Age of Bronze #s 27 & 28
Writer/Artist/Cover artist: Eric Shanower
Publisher: Image Comics
Price: $3.50 US
Age of Bronze is one of those rare titles that deserves to be mentioned in the company of such indy success stories as Bone, Strangers in Paradise and Cerebus, but it isn’t, probably because it’s been published under the Image Comics banner. It’s a remarkably ambitious project for the medium, let alone in the episodic, “floppy” comic-book format. Shanower’s research into the subject matter, history, culture, personalities and warfare is meticulous, and he holds back no detail so as to recreate the events of ancient times for his readers. His artwork is as detail-oriented as his writing. So dense is it, in fact, that it leads one to conduct multiple readings, not just of the entire comic but of individual panels as well. Mind you, many of these strengths also act as hindrances in Shanower’s work. Age of Bronze certainly isn’t an easy comic, and I can’t help but wonder if the sheer volume of information the creator tries to impart isn’t something of an albatross around the book’s neck.