DIE has been a roller coaster of a story since its first issue. Follow the Godbinder and the Fool as they deal with internal and external conflicts in Die #7 from Image Comics.
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Stephanie Hans
Colorist: Stephanie Hans
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Editor: Chrissy Williams
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 4th, 2019
Previously in Die: The story follows a group of Tabletop Game Players who are magically sucked back into a world after barely escaping as teenagers. After committing an atrocity by destroying Glass Town to draw out and kill their old friend Sol, the party is split. Ash, Matt, and Angela are trying to get the undead Sol out of occupied Glass Town while Isabelle and Chuck focus on getting refugees of Glass Town to somewhere safe. The heroes will need to come together to return back to earth. Will they be able to reconcile after the events of Glass Town or will the party be split forever?
FIND THE INNER CONFIDENCE
The story starts with Isabelle, the Godbinder, writing in her diary. She laments the crime she committed in Glass Town and is running out of favors to give the Gods. However Chuck, the Fool, comes in and throws her diary in a puddle of piss. Isabelle makes a deal out of anger with Mistress Woe to mess with Chuck. Chuck then goes out to have a drink with some of the refugees and wakes up with a hangover thus setting a tone of annoyance with everyone.
The refugees are able to see an oasis that isn’t on the map nor created by Mother Nature. Many people fear it is a trap but still partake in the sorely needed water. Isabelle and Chuck have a meeting with a Chamberlain of Glass Town but is interrupted by the Elf Queen. Chuck and the Elf Queen instantly butt heads but the Elf Queen reveals that she is trying to get water from the Oasis since her people were driven from the elven lands. Chuck cuts out of the meeting to go drink and finds himself surprised that his drinking buddies have backstories despite them not being important characters set up by the Game Master.
The camp is then ambushed by a Titan, a giant monstrous creature with a rhino-esque horn on his head. Isabelle reveals this is the punishment that Mistress Woe has sent for Chuck and Chuck goes and battles the titan alone. And he wins. There is a celebration and Chuck ends up sleeping with the Elf Queen. After the act, he laments how he began to take everything superficially and sees everyone here as just a character in a story instead of actual people. The Elf Queen responds that even if Chuck sees her as a character with a high Charisma score, she still has thoughts and feelings and is therefore real.
Isabella grabs Chuck and they meet with a new character called Lord Zamora, an exiled man who seems to realize that he is in a tabletop game. Lord Zamora hasn’t aged at all despite it being twenty years since our heroes last seen him. The last panel reveals that he has vampire teeth.
THERE IS A LOT TO UNPACK
I have fallen in love with this series because there is a depth of story that constantly surprises me. These two characters are my least favorite but their stories still entice me. Chuck is out of touch with reality and this trait is only exemplified by the fact that this world was created by Sol and not a definitive reality. Though there are a lot of questions about the exact rules of the world it is clear that Chuck doesn’t take it very seriously. In fact, he doesn’t take anything seriously. During the story, he laments about how he went from wife to wife because he was doing it for an act and not for any emotional connection. He is the hero we love to hate and the writer does an excellent job helping you become empathetic to the character.
Isabelle has a theme of a guilt built into her character. While we haven’t seen a lot of backstory yet for her, we do know that she is divorced. With her relationships with the gods it is always about pleading for help and in return she owes a debt. She is a character that is being torn in a bunch of different directions. She has guilt for making deals with the gods and then has guilt that her actions are not enough to help the people she cares about. I’m looking forward to seeing what the writers do with this plot point in future issues.
Lastly, the art is beautiful. Every issue of this series has knocked it out of the park and I am captivated with the visuals from page one. Art that can easily bring you into the story is exactly what you need to elevate your book to the next level.
BOTTOM LINE: ANOTHER GREAT ISSUE
This series challenges me to think about how to create stories. I work as a storyteller through TTRP Games full time and seeing the masterful storytelling is inspiring. I’m going to continue to pick this up because I am the target audience. Full five stars from me.