Swords of Sorrow: Red Sonja/Jungle Girl #1 is one of the Swords of Sorrow books you should definitely pick up. It is funny without losing the edge and urgency of the combat, and it allows both women to show their strengths.
Red Sonja, having just finished battling White Apes and the minions of the Prince alongside Dejah Thoris, is looking for a way back home. Instead, she finds herself on Jana’s island where she is mistaken for an intruder. The swordplay exchange of quips lasts just long enough to be amusing; both characters are smart enough to take a good look at the swords and realize that something is up.
Marguerite Bennett gives both characters quick wits, but in different ways: Red Sonja is faster with the quips; Jana the Jungle Girl, by contrast, is almost naïve, yet she is at home in the location, is the first to figure out that the two of them may not be enemies, and is ready enough to pick up puns. The writing is fast, funny, and keeps the adventure on that edge between silly and dramatic that makes for the best pulp.
Mirka Andolfo’s art is flowing, and his page balance strong. Look at that first page in the gallery, where Red Sonja and the big cat face one another. Both are clearly predators, and while the cat looms, the colors and Sonja’s pose keep it from overwhelming the page. Giving Red Sonja a rounder face does make her seem younger than the woman most artists portray, but no less capable. There is a monster later that is quite magnificent. Not mentioned by either woman, but quite evident in the artwork and amusing is the fact that they have identical taste in clothing. The material is different, but the style is the same. Possibly the She Devil should take some fashion tips from the Jungle Girl. Jana’s clothing will never give her rust rash.
Swords of Sorrow: Red Sonja/Jungle Girl #1 is out today from Dynamite Comics.
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Mirka Andolfo
Colorist: Vincenzo Salvo
Letters: Erica Schultz
Cover art: Jay Anacleto with colors by Ivan Nunes