Reaver #1 Review

by Olivier Roth on July 10, 2019

Writer/Creator: Justin Jordan

Artist/Creator: Rebekah Isaacs

Colorist: Alex Guimaraes

Letterer: Clayton Cowles

Published by: Image 


The solicit for this issue stated that it would be a story that would fit well in a post Game of Thrones world? Does Reaver measure up to this claim? After the first issue, I would say, it’s possible.


Reaver tells the tale of warring nations in a fantasy setting not unlike what you would find in Game of Thrones or Conan the Barbarian. It’s a fantasy setting more akin to the Swords and Sandals type then High Fantasy - more bloody battles, less magic (though magic is present). What sells this issue in my opinion is actually the back-matter explanation of Jordan’s of how he came about creating this new world, some of its “rules” and his passion for the subject matter. 


So, what is Reaver? Well, the best-way I could describe it, prior to reading Jordan’s explanation, was a Conan-esque style story that borrows from the Suicide Squad concept (or, as is mentioned by Jordan, the Dirty Dozen). It sees one of the warring nations recruit 4 prisoners that will be sent on a suicide mission to stop the other nation’s use of a magic that allows them to view the former’s plans. 


The group is comprised of: the Coward, the Charmer, the “Savage” and the Berserker, led by the Magician and his mute servant. These descriptors aren’t given in the actual issue itself, however, through a mix of showing the reader (the Coward and the Berserker) and telling (the “Savage, the Charmer and the Magician and servant), you get an idea of who the main case of the comic is. 


The issue is very exposition heavy as most of it is dedicated to the recruitment process, but Jordan does sprinkle some action at the beginning to showcase the Coward and the berserker (and how I came to nickname them that way) as well as the end for the planned “escape”. 


 Rebekah Isaacs and Alex Guimaraes comprise the issues art team and for two names that I am not that familiar with, I must say they do a marvelous job of engaging the reader in the action (when there is action) and do a pretty good job in the non-action scenes. I believe if I had to have one tiny criticism for Isaacs, it’s that sometimes the perspective chosen gives the wrong sense of size to some characters. The most egregious example of this is the Berserker. He is first introduced as this hulking man towering over other characters (namely the Coward), yet in some panels looks to be the same size as the coward. 


All in all, this was a fun debut issue that had enough going for it for me to return for a second issue. Now that the set-up seems to be done, I can’t wait to see what Jordan and Isaacs come up with next.

Our Score:


A Look Inside