Read This Book- “The Forged” From Image Comics

I seem to be on a bit of a barbarian comics kick as of late, but man does not live by bread alone, so today I’m returning to my roots with a little dose of some hard sci-fi…

about barbarian women.

I’m only partially kidding. This week I am looking at The Forged, a new comic from Image written by Eric Trautmann, known for a variety of fantasy and sci-fi comic works, and Wonder Woman scribe Greg Rucka, with art by Mike Henderson of Nailbiter fame. It’s a pretty hard hitting cast of creatives working on this book, and the results so far a pretty impressive.

So let’s give this title a go and see what you get when you mix barbarians, sci-fi, and intergalactic political intrigue into the old comic mixer and hit blend!

Here’s the blurb: In the 11th Millennium of the rule of the Eternal Empress, a squad of planet-smashing super soldiers find their routine mission to be anything but. These are the Forged. They take no prisoners. Written by GREG RUCKA & ERIC TRAUTMANN and brought to the page by MIKE HENDERSON, embark upon an over-the-top pulp adventure of sex, violence, and sci-fi inspired by Conan, Heavy Metal, and other comics you tried to hide from your parents.

Right off the bat you can tell that Trautmann has a history with video games, because a lot of this first issue of The Forged feels like cut scenes. I don’t mean that in a bad way, just that there is a lot of info and not a ton of action. It’s fairly obvious that we have a lot of world building to get out of the way early on so that the action can dominate the second issue, but still, it would have been nice to have seen a bit more show and not tell about how tough our protagonists actually were.

And let’s talk about them. The core of The Forged revolves around a group of bio engineered warrior women that are, in essence, this stories version of space marines. Big, strong, brutal, and crude, these Amazonian powerhouses are simultaneously the elite warriors of the galaxy, and also feared by many in this society because of their perceived brutishness and danger.

And these women are tough. Thick cores and rippling muscles, it’s a nice change of pace from a lot of what we normally see in comics about warrior women, where they have incredible strength but no actual discernable muscle tone or signs of physicality. Don’t get me wrong, I love works like Red Sonja and Wonder Woman, but at the end of the day, it gets a little tiring having woman that are supposed to be figures of power and respect reduced to little more than eye candy for the male gaze.

Make Warrior Women Thick shall be my new slogan for 2023.

In addition to their physical prowess, The Forged are also intellectual forces to be reckoned with, so when they are assigned a mission outside the norm they immediately begin to wonder what is actually going on. Unfortunately for them, before they can figure that out everything goes to hell in a handbasket, and that lack of violent content I was lamenting moves directly to the forefront.

We need more sci-fi comics like this in the world.

Issue 1 of The Forged drops this Wednesday and has the potential to be the start of something really great, so call your LCS and ask them to pull you a copy!

Until next time, Stay Safe!

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