Grendel-Prime returns to Dark Horse in a new adventure from his creator Matt Wagner this month, and it’s in spectacular fashion. Drawn out from his seclusion from humanity Grendel-Prime is tasked by the last in the line of the Grendel-Khan’s to leave Earth and re-establish humanity amongst the stars with just a Drone (Sigma-Seven, although she prefers Siggy and female pronouns) for company.
As the story begins Prime is already some way into his search for a new Earth, and ready to try a new planet that looks hopeful. As he and Siggy (I’ll call her by her name, even if Grendel won’t!) explore, the reader is filled in on the backstory, ensuring easy access for the new fans, and dusting things down for the older fan, bringing us all up to speed. But this just speaks to Wagner’s vast experience, being able to make an established and long running character instantly accessible to new fans yet never having to belabour their history to the frustration of long-term fans.
Packed with some truly glorious art and colours, this first part sets the tone for the coming series perfectly. Bizarre creatures and technology, beautiful spaceships and alien worlds are all bought to life here, with just a splash of the retro about it, so that it feels all at once both familiar yet new.
There is humour and action in a perfect balance as Grendel-Prime steps out of his comfort zone, onto the dusty surface of an alien world and returns once again as a protector of humanity, in his own unique style. I look forward to seeing where his odyssey takes him, and us, next. Jeff Goddard