Previously in Birthright #19
Now to say this is a game changer is not saying enough! Surprises all around! This week has been all kinds of crazy. From The Walking Dead premiere, to me actually liking Gotham, to this issue of Birthright – it’s all been exciting. This issue of Birthright was one of my favorites; not for the action, which this comic is known for, but more the surprises Williamson seems to give us when we least expect them. He lulls us into comfort with good writing and makes us feel content to just ride along the story’s tracks, watching the narrative methodically move before us then… he hits us upside the head with something big. And this is big, colossal even. The revelations here will change the way we approach this story, and I think we all know there is something else lurking in the shadows of Williamson’s mind just waiting to hit us again like, “You know nothing, Jon Snow.”
The story begins with everyone pulling themselves out of Sameal’s house that had been leveled by the dragon Brennon and Aaron released. The art done by Bressan and Lucas just foreshadows what is to come as far as the direction and framework of the story itself. There are some panels in this book that are eye-popping, and as always, Bressan and Lucas deserve all the praise and accolades they can get.
As a dragon covers their escape, Brennon, Sameal, Aaron, and Mikey make their way from the area, but Enoch is having none of that. He knows his friend will stop at nothing to capture Mikey so Sameal has to make a choice. And he does by killing his friend. As Enoch dies on the ground with Sameal comforting him, Enoch whispers, “I hope your family was worth… the world…” and he dies in Sameal’s arms.
As Enoch leaves this world, Kylen sees it all and traps Mickey in the “Chains of Chernobog.” You have to love the names of some of the weapons and places in this story. Anyway, the “Chains” cause pain to the person using them and Mikey asks Kylen if he can take it. Kylen says he has to if he is to save this world. And using what was left of the Angry Engines army, Kylen makes his escape with Mikey as Sameal and the others look on helplessly.
Meanwhile, Mastema, Wendy and Rya are still at her place looking for a way to get Rya back to Terrenos before the baby is born. As Rya continues to plead her case ,saying that she is alright and that she is not going anywhere with Mikey, Mastema reveals that Mikey is not the “real” chosen one. Rya is shocked, as I think we all are. And here is the twist to that twist, the real hero of this story is actually the villain. The God King Lore was the “original” chosen one. I give you permission to breathe again. What the F#$%! And guess what else? He looks just like Mikey! Oh, and one last thing… Mastema is his daughter!
Mikey’s on his way to Mastema, all tied up. His plan all along was to get taken by Kylen. He knew it would be almost impossible to get into Mastema’s lair without help, and now Kylen is going to walk him into the front door.
Back on Terrenos, we find out that Rook is still alive and Lore has been keeping him for some reason. Rook tells Lore that “Mikey will overcome what you did to him. He’ll remember why he was chosen to be the hero.”
“Oh if you only knew,” Lore replies as he stands before his grand army, which I can only imagine has a one-way ticket to Earth.
To say this issue was a game changer is an understatement. The reader will now have to change the lens we use to read this story. We now know that Lore was the “original” chosen one and I want to put an emphasis on “original” because I think Williamson is trying to tell us something using that word. That would lead one to believe that there may be another. Williamson even bolds the word for us in the text. I am still waiting for Mickey to overcome his demons, literally, and become the second coming of Terrenos’ hero. Or maybe he is the chosen one not of Terrenos, but of Earth? Also, we find out that Mastema is Lore’s daughter. I wonder what that was like growing up – having a “god king” as a father. I guess it cannot be any different than Xerxes I having to live in the shadow of Darius I, the Great or Alexander having to walk in Philip II of Macedon’s shoes. In each of these examples, the son overshadowed the father in his accomplishments. I also wonder what Mastema will do. Or maybe we are going to find out that Mickey is actually Lore’s son,; he does look just like him after all. More and more secrets! Either way I am expecting great things going forward. The issue was great and I hope Williamson just keeps the surprises coming.