Saturday, August 5, 2023

Comics Review: FIRE AND ICE VOLUME 1#1 Burns Hot with Cold Fire


STORY: Bill Willingham
ART: Leonardo Manco
COLORS: Leonardo Manco
LETTERS: Taylor Esposito
EDITOR: Matt Idelson
COVER: Bill Seinkiewicz
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (August 2023)

Rated Teen+

Fire and Ice created by Ralph Bakshi and Frank Frazetta

“Good in Life”

Fire and Ice is an animated epic, dark fantasy, adventure film directed by Ralph Bakshi.  The film is the result of a collaboration between Bakshi and the legendary fantasy painter, Frank Frazetta, with the film's screenplay being written by veteran comic book writers, Roy Thomas and Gerry Conway.

In 2022, Dynamite Entertainment announced that it had gained the license to produce a comic book series set in the world of Fire and Ice.  The series would act as a prequel to the film.  Fire and Ice the comic book is written by Bill Willingham; drawn and colored by Leonardo Manco; and lettered by Taylor Esposito.

Fire and Ice Volume 1 #1 opens in the Riverlands, situated between the Ice Lands and the Fire KingdomLarn is part of a group of young warriors led through the forests of the Riverlands by its “Hunt Father.”  Tragedy strikes, however, and Larn soon finds himself captive.  Eventually, he ends up being a prize for an ambitious witch.

Meanwhile, the Queen of the Fire Kingdom and her young daughter, Princess Teegra, are also on the hunt when they come upon the D'Kora Kai, the tribal lackeys of Juliana, Queen of the Ice Lands.  Can evil be blunted in this time before the Fire Kingdom waned and the Ice Lands surged?

THE LOWDOWN:  Since July 2021, Dynamite Entertainment's marketing department has been providing me with PDF review copies of some of their titles.  One of them is Fire and Ice Volume 1 #1,  which is the first Frank Frazetta-related comic book I have read in a long time.

I have never seen Fire and Ice, except for a few minutes so long ago that I can't remember that time or what I saw.  I am a fan of the films of Ralph Bakshi, especially of Wizards (1977).  I enjoy looking at Frank Frazetta's paintings.  I enjoy the comic book work of writers, Roy Thomas and Gerry Conway, and I am a big fan of the Conan movie they wrote, Conan the Destroyer (1984).  So let's say that I should and will eventually watch Fire and Ice.

In the meantime, there is this prequel comic book series.  I think readers can enjoy Fire and Ice Volume 1 #1 without having seen the movie.  As I said, I have not, but I did read the film's Wikipedia page before reading this lovely first issue.  The Wikipedia info combined with Bill Willingham's engaging script is enough to have made this issue a joy.

Willingham's script works so well because it is in the hands of artist Leonardo Manco, who easily captures the prehistoric and savage splendor of the sword and sorcery genre to which Fire and Ice belongs, in both pencil and color.  Also, Taylor Esposito's lettering creates a pounding graphical soundtrack to this first issue.

Hey, dear readers, this is really good stuff. I'm an definitely coming back for more, and you should definitely come around at least for this first issue.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Ralph Bakshi and Frank Frazetta will want to try the comic book, Fire and Ice Volume 1.


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

The text is copyright © 2023 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


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