In 1220 AD, the Albigensian Crusade gets a special task—investigate heresy in the nearby village of Montaillou. However, an alien space ship has crashed in the wilderness of the French Pyrenees, paving way for some bloodthirsty aliens to take over the town. Once the Crusade gets to Montaillou, the entire population is living together, scared of the “demons” that attacked. They catch a Cathar heretic who seems to be at the center of it all, and take on the beasts until they have no choice but to retreat. With these “demon” aliens wreaking havoc, it’s up to the Crusade to stop them…but how?
With 44 pages of content, this debut issue begins a medieval sci-fi story about the adventure in saving a town and growing up. Writer Nathan Fairbairn orchestrates a fluid script with a lot of character interaction. A lot of personalities in this issue clash but, oddly enough, they end up working pretty well together when need be.
We have two kids, one of whom has recently been deemed a knight, a religious zealot, an insubordinate drunk, and some supporting characters that don’t get much time on the page. The knight’s traveling companion, though, seems like he has some spunk in him. Initially, these characters were sent on a heresy-detecting mission to waste time because one Lord Montfort didn’t want them in his camp. Little did he know, they would come across an even bigger problem than heresy.
Artist Matt Smith illustrates this issue with great attention to characters’ facial expressions. Each character’s personality shows through their body language. Using light sources to highlight warmer and colder panels, like when the Crusade stops for the night and sits around a fire, dramatizes the script even more. The art style isn’t realistic and there are a few awkward illustrations, like every character’s bulbous nose, but the artwork does a fine job of doing the storytelling in unison with the script.
This is a great story for anyone who likes a good adventure. The language used reflects the time period, so it won’t be for everyone, but definitely for fans of the medieval times. The fact that there is a sci-fi aspect to this series blows my mind. I’ve never really seen the two genres mixed together as much as this, but it works really well. I fully recommend you head over to your local comic shop and give it a read.
Written by: Nathan Fairbairn
Illustrated by: Matt Smith