Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Comics Review: RED SONJA Valentine's Day Special 2022


STORY: Chuck Brown
ART: Jordi Perez; Alessandro Miracolo; Moy R.; Emiliana Pinna; Lorenzo Tammetta
COLORS: Ellie Wright
LETTERS: Jeff Eckleberry
EDITOR: Nate Cosby
COVER: Sozomaika
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Lesley Leirix; John Royle; Sozomaika; Rachel Hollon cosplay
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (February 2022)

Rated Teen+

“Heart Ache”

Red Sonja is female high fantasy and sword and sorcery hero.  She first appeared in Conan the Barbarian #23 (cover dated February 1973) and was created by writer Roy Thomas and artist Barry Windsor-Smith.  Red Sonja was loosely based on “Red Sonya of Rogatino,” a female character that appeared in the 1934 short story, “The Shadow of the Vulture,” written by Conan the Cimmerian's creator, Robert E. Howard.

In 2005, Dynamite Entertainment began publishing comic books featuring the character.  One of those is Red Sonja Valentine's Special.  It is written by Chuck Brown; drawn by Jordi Perez, Alessandro Miracolo, Moy R., Emiliana Pinna, and Lorenzo Tammetta; colored by Ellie Wright; and lettered by Jeff Eckleberry.  In this special holiday edition, the She-Devil with a Sword is bedeviled.

Red Sonja Valentine's Special opens in Keen ValleyAmbrose and her husband, Eric, are newlyweds, working hard together.  Suddenly, cupid-like Cherubs attack the couple and spirit Eric away.  Descending from “Shadow Mountain,” the Cherubs are kidnapping humans to take back to their king, an ogre, who hungers for human flesh.  Soon, all of Keen Valley is hiding from the Cherubs.

Luckily, Red Sonja is passing through the valley, and, for some gold, she is willing to take on the Cherubs and rescue captured denizens before they become meat for the ogre beast.  Surprisingly, Sonja ends up with a partner, as Ambrose proves to be quite the fighter.  Can even two she-devils, however, put an end to the rampaging Cherubs and their heart-eating king?

THE LOWDOWN:  In July 2021, Dynamite Entertainment's marketing department began providing me with PDF review copies of some of their titles.  One of them is Red Sonja Valentine's Special, which is one of several Dynamite Red Sonja comic books that I have read.

Red Sonja Valentine's Special is a breezy read.  Writer Chuck Brown offers a delightfully madcap comic tale that is both true to the spirit of Red Sonja and is also a demented twist on the comic book holiday issue.  This story's artist, of which many are credited, and colorist Ellie Wright fill the pages with humorous gore and hacking and slashing.  If red is the color of Valentine's Day, then, this comic book is filled many shades and splashes of it.

Red Sonja Valentine's Special is not great, but it is quite good … which is more than I can say for some Valentine's Day comic book specials.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Red Sonja comic books will want to read Red Sonja Valentine's Special.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"


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