As 2021 gets in full swing so to do the new comics, launching their Kickstarters to find the money and readership necessary to make their dreams reality. One such comic, Ruination #1 by Ryan Bis and Giulia Lalli, becomes our focus this week as its own campaign gets underway.
Publisher: Curious Perspective Comics
Writer: Ryan Bis, Nicole D’Andria (Editor)
Artist: Giulia Lalli (Lines), Kaytee Brown (Colors), Matías Zanetti (Letters/Graphic Design), Rio Burton (Covers), Emma Southey-Ray (Concept Art)
Price: Currently on Kickstarter
Ruination tells the story of Dante, Jalen and Keila, three young people from two very different sides of a war long ended. Now, all three continue their respective lives through peacetime, unaware of the others. However, these three have their journeys thrust together when the Fallen, a revolutionary faction, attacks the fishing village of Caldonnia in search of a mysterious emerald. Now Dante, Jalen and Keila must join forces to complete their respective missions while attempting to stop the Fallen’s murderous leader, Silas, from finding that which he seeks in order to further his own mysterious goals.
Ryan Bis has written an intriguing story with Ruination as he begins a tale that feels like it may lead to something of epic proportions. Admittedly, the issue has something of a bumpy start as the information and exposition needed to explain the world, culture, politics and characters seems immense. This leads to a feeling of confusion as the story opens as I found difficulty in keeping track of the vast array of characters as well as the plot. In fact, although the opening page text does impart some knowledge, an issue 0 prologue may have been helpful.
However, conflict is often chaotic and if this opening was designed this way to give a real sense of the opening battle then Bis has pulled off something quite impressive. Either way, as the story (and the world) open up, The plot seems to find the space to breathe as Bis finds a nice balanced pace and allows us to properly get to know the characters and understand everyone’s motivations. This leaves us with a whole bunch of questions about all of these characters which can only build up the intrigue and rue Bis for not making the issue giant size.
Meanwhile, the artwork on offer in Ruination is truly gorgeous in every sense of the word. Giulia Lalli art coupled with Kaytee Brown’s colours are so vibrant, smooth and clean, they can’t help but remind me of other wonderful fantasy/period comics like Curia Regis, Delver, Eternal and Song for the Dead. In fact, the art feels like the perfect style for this fantasy-esque world. This is best exemplified in the various characters’ use of magic and how stand out it is, as well as the hauntingly sombre depiction of some ghostly figures which linger after the battle has ended.
Ruination is a great comic made up of beautifully rendered visuals and a deep, intriguing story. While it does have a bumpy start, it’s charm and enticement with tidbits about the overall story will turn you around, convincing you back with the promise of its overall potential.