ONCE & FUTURE #8, out this Wednesday from Boom! Studios, is about to take an even darker turn than ever. The perfect Knight Duncan is not, but he may be setting up to face one. Not to mention all of the other creatures going bump in the night.
All things considered, Duncan has taken well to the transition in his life. Once he was a man with a boring life and an estranged family. Now he’s hunting monsters with his grandmother, and acting like that’s totally normal.
Perhaps because, for this family, that actually is normal. A good day is a day you get to walk back home on your own two legs. A lesson that Duncan has already learned, despite his short period of time spent out on the field.
That being said, Once & Future #8 is about to test Duncan in ways he never could have prepared for. His grandmother too, for that matter. This is not a typical tale of monsters versus men. No, this is what happens when stories come to life.
You’d think that coming up against the legend of King Arthur would be the biggest event in Duncan’s career. You’d be wrong. The events in Once & Future #8 have set out to make that abundantly clear. Something has woken up the stories in this world, and they’re not here to play nice.
Written by Kieron Gillen, this is an intense issue from start to finish. Even during the calmer moments, there’s this lingering sense of something horrible about to happen. It’s chilling, especially when one considers everything that is at stake.
While the issue is without a doubt extremely dark at points, there are moments of humor. Especially those with a darker sense of humor. Look to a quote regarding stories and bullets, and you’ll know exactly what we’re talking about here.
The buildup within this issue is on-point. It’s steadily increasing, rising up until it finally explodes outwork. The timing is so perfect, no matter how you look at it. Even if you’re not keen on the story that has been woken, there’s something to be appreciated in the way it is told.
The artwork found inside Once & Future #8 is something to behold. It’s vibrant and alive – something coming in stark contrast to the stories walking around on the pages. Each panel has something demanding your attention, from the detailing in the background to the horrors occurring at the front.
Dan Mora was the lead artist for this issue. He’s the one that brought these stories back to life, at least as far as the comics are concerned. They’re daunting and larger than life, though some more than others. It’s a unique style, but one that works beautifully with the subjects at hand.
The colors were done by Tamra Bonvillain, which explains why they’re so exquisite. We’re talking bold swaths of colors in combinations like you would never expect – especially for a horror series. Yet it is absolute perfection, and we wouldn’t change a thing.
Ed Dukeshire provided the letters, and they are the final touch this issue needed. Ranging from discreet to bold, the lettering flawlessly does it’s job over the course of this issue.
Once & Future #8 brings with it lots of twists and surprises, as well as a comedic sense of timing. It has been a twisted sort of fun, watching Duncan grow into his new role as protector, but it’ll be even more interesting to see how he handles the latest hurdle.