Lazarus: Risen No. 1 review: Almost fifty pages of amazing intrigue!


Lazarus: Risen was totally worth the wait and the price!

It took almost ten months, but it finally hit the shelves, and it’s understandable why it took so long for Lazarus: Risen to hit the market. Greg Rucka is a writer gifted with perhaps too much insight into how things can go wrong, and creating a world where ultra-rich families control literally everything and have enhanced champions who fight their battles for them, requires patience and deliberation. Thankfully, he’s operating at peak performance, and his dedication to crafting readers an immersive and engrossing universe shines through as bright as a nuclear explosion in the forty-four pages of the latest installment in the world of Lazarus. Michael Lark is like freaking Leonardo da Vinci, or perhaps Michelangelo is a more apt comparison; the art is absolutely stunning, intricate and involved, full of power and emotion, so it comes as no surprise to learn that he isn’t pumping out pages left and right. Perfection takes time, and Lazarus: Risen is as near to perfection as anything that has come out in the last five years. With colors from Santi Arcas, lettering from the incomparable Simon Bowland, a short fiction story from Lilah Sturges, and supplemental graphics from Eric Trautmann, this double-size issue is well worth the $7.99 purchase price.

Image Comics

Lazarus is, at its heart, a story about family, told through innocent eyes

The last issue of Lazarus to come out was about Jonah Carlyle, forsaken son of the Carlyle empire, building and losing a family due to wars between rival dynasties. This issue jumps ahead a couple of years, starting out with Carlyle forces, led by Forever Carlyle, the genetically-enhanced Lazarus of the Carlyle family, reclaiming territory about to be given over to the Russian Vassalovka family in an operation that finally goes right after years of flawed plans. Forever and her sister, Johanna, the acting head of the Carlyle family, discuss Forever meeting with Eight, the next Lazarus clone, who has no idea Forever exists, or that she is the eighth clone (Forever being the seventh). Back in the Sierra Nevadas, at the Carlyle compound that grows and trains the Lazarus clones, Eight lashes out at her creators after some strenuous exercise, prompting Dr. Beth Carlyle, Johanna’s sister and director of the Lazarus program.

Image Comics

The coping mechanisms of the insanely rich, and, of course, betrayal

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Bethany Carlyle is under enormous amounts of stress; not only must she keep the Lazarus program running smoothly but, every time a clone fails to meet standards, she personally is the one to euthanize them, and caring about the humans she augments and being responsible for killing them when necessary takes its toll. Understandably, she distracts herself with not only high-grade narcotics, but an illicit affair with her co-worker. Meanwhile, Forever heads off on her next mission, which looks to be a secret rendezvous with the D’Souza family Lazarus, Zeferino, on a derelict oil platform in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Once there, Forever is blindsided by Joacquim Morray, a Lazarus she once had an intimate relationship with, whose cybernetic implants and ruined flesh give him a big-time Terminator appearance. The issue ends on that suspenseful note.

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The new quarterly format may cause adoring readers a longer wait than most imprints but, with each issue basically being two issues worth of material, including back-matter, an always entertaining letters column and science facts, it appears to be well worth the wait. Lazarus: Risen looks to have the potential of being something truly great, which we all already knew, since the comic is currently in development, somewhere in Hollywood. 9.99/10, painfully recommended. Let us know what you thought in the comments section below.