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2000 AD Prog Slog

Monday, March 29, 2010

Prog 1114 07/10/98

I can’t express enough how pleasing it is to say here how improved Slaine has been since the thrill started to focus on his time as the High King. His adventures set later with him and Ukko travelling through time became plodding and formulaic. Now they seem fresh and promising.

In The Swan Children, we learn that Slaine has many wives and adopted children. One of those wives, Aeife, is jealous of one of the children and so turns her and three of her siblings into swans. Slaine is pretty pissed off with her and a fight with a giant snake ensues (obviously) but it’s the reaction of other cast members which is a revelation. Ukko seems particularly saddened by the change in the children and concerned for their fate.

Siku paints all three parts of the story. His interpretation of the character seems to sit half way between the modern and original lean versions which I like. I haven’t always enjoyed his previous artwork but for The Swan Children everything about it is pitched perfectly from the story telling to the page composition to the colour.

It’s great to see Pat Mills softening his pagan militancy and focusing more on story, ideas and characterisation. I understand from The Slog comments section that, at this time, nothing other than Slaine commissions were being accepted from the writer which, at first, seems amazing considering his history with 2000 AD, but if this sort of story is the result then maybe it’s not such a bad thing.

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2 Comments:

  • I've not read this story but from the description it sounds like Mills has done his adaption of an old Irish fairytale "The Children of Lir"

    A lot of Mills best Slaine stories are ones where he takes elements of actual Irish/Celtic legends and incorporates them rather than trying to retrofit them with his anarcho-pagan stuff that he seems obsessed with for the first half of the nineties.

    By Blogger Derek, at 6:50 pm  

  • Thanks Derek. I don't know how close the fairy story is to this Slaine version, ut I enjoyed it.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:49 pm  

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