Review – Red Sonja: The Art of Blood and Fire

Cover of Red Sonja volume 2 by Gail SimoneRed Sonja: The Art of Blood and Fire, Gail Simone, Walter Geovani

Gail Simone’s run on Red Sonja continues to make the She-Devil about a lot more than tits and ass and the male gaze. Her relationships with other women are important, but here we also see how she relates to the rather male-oriented world around her. I love that it makes no excuses for what Sonja is like — low on hygiene, high on hedonism, low on distinction, high in violence… And she’s a character you can love anyway, because there are things she cares about, regrets that she has, and she clearly inspires people around her in many ways. Despite her faults, she has friends, and she knows exactly who she is.

The art is mostly lovely, though some of the variant covers do veer back to the tits and ass version of Sonja, I think. And the… ‘chibi-fied’ ones just made me wince. C’mon, don’t infantilise this powerful woman who would hate to be portrayed that way…

Sonja’s adventures continue to be more episodic and disconnected than cohesive. It’s not a superhero story with a massive arc and a need to obsessively buy loads of tie-in comics. Which is good, I think.

Rating: 4/5

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