Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Fantasy/Graphic Novel
Length: 300 pages
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: April 19, 2012
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in the Skullkickers Treasure Trove series
Rating: 4/5 stars
This was a load of good ole’ swords and sorcery fantasy that was fun to read. I really enjoyed it. This Treasure Trove collects issues 1-11 from the Skullkickers comic and includes two additional stories.
Our two heroes (or more like anti-heroes) are mercenaries trying to make a living and a name for themselves. They end up facing off with a necromancer (who’s gotten a bit too big for his britches) and a ginormous evil plant. This novel is action packed, a bit crude at times, and occasionally hilarious.
I thought the book started out a bit rough, but the story got more interesting and the dialogue was better as the story continued. Our two main characters, Rolf and Rex, are your typical head-bashing type of warriors. However, there are hints that there are more to these two than first meets the eye.
The style is very cartoonish with a lot of “BAM!” “WHAM” types of dialogue/sounds scrawled across the frames. The drawing is also fairly cartoonish (not my favorite), but there is enough background detail to keep things interesting. I did really love the fact that everything is done in full and vibrant color. Also the illustrations are easy to follow and portray the characters actions and emotions well.
This is a very violent graphic novel, although I didn’t think it was as adult as Rat Queens is. There really isn’t any sexual stuff or drugs; just lots and lots of violence and drinking.
I picked this up because I read somewhere that this was similar in theme to Rat Queens. It kind of is, but Rat Queens is a million times better…Rat Queens is more hilarious, has more interesting illustration, and just more depth and wit to it. Skullkickers does have a similar fantasy mercenary theme to it and is very violent but that is where the similarities end.
Overall this was a fun swords and sorcery type of classic fantasy graphic novel. It’s very tongue and cheek and parts of the story are very funny. The story and dialogue are a bit rough at the beginning but improve as the story continues. The illustration is also very cartoon-like which is not my favorite. I did enjoy the fantasy setting and all the uber violent action scenes. I would recommend to those who enjoy humorous fantasy graphic novels with a lot of violence and action. I really liked Rat Queens a lot more, but this was also an entertaining fantasy graphic novel.