AFTER ATTACKING AND STEALING THE POWERS OF SUPER-POWERED INDIVIDUALS, CARNAGE TRAVELED TO NIFFLEHEIM TO HUNT DOWN HIS NEXT VICTIM, MALEKITH, AND EXTRACT HIS SYMBIOTE CODEX.
BUT DETECTIVE JONATHAN SHAYDE, WHO HAS BEEN AIDED BY THE VOICE OF CLETUS KASADY IN HIS HEAD, FOLLOWED CARNAGE TO HEL TO TRY TO STOP THE MADNESS ONCE AND FOR ALL.
The molten metal and soot-stained stone of Nidavellir’s dwarven forges offer a welcome contrast to the snowy hills of Hel that Carnage has made us so well-acquainted with. Issue #9 does a bang-up job of establishing its new setting, efficiently compacting what appears to be an incredibly complex history.
Nidavellir is the birthplace of every weapon in the gods’ legendary arsenal, yet the craftsmen that reside there live not as revered artists but condemned prisoners. As if their situation wasn’t sad enough, at some point the living embodiment of Thor’s hammer Mjolnir arrived to massacre its creators. All this information is divulged in the span of a double page spread. It provides the perfect amount of context to tickle the fancy of knowledgeable Thor fans and spark curiosity in the minds of unfamiliar readers.
Carnage earns his own chapter in the tragic history of the dwarves, slaughtering his way through them with a level of ease that is beginning to show signs of repetition. The symbiote killer is traversing a strange, new world, one that few characters from the Spider-man franchise have ever stepped foot in, yet he bullies his way through every realm as if he’s lived there for years. I can help but feel as if opportunities to pit Carnage against challenging mystical foes of equal or greater power have been missed.
Rather than combat, issue #9 is entirely focused on the introduction of Drorin Runehewer, a dwarven blacksmith who becomes Carnage’s latest uneasy ally. The symbiote desires that a great weapon be forged, a weapon unlike any other, and Drorin has the skills to do so. Writer Ram V quickly establishes Drorin as possibly the most heroic figure in this morally grey story. Drorin is tired and pessimistic, left scarred by a lifetime of betrayal, yet even he has enough sense to know that the world must be spared from Carnage’s madness. He agrees to give the symbiote what he wants but gets to work on his own secret agenda. His actions make him incredibly interesting, and I’m excited to see if his boldness will pay off in the end.
Carnage #9 establishes the next stage of the titular symbiote's mythical journey, and introduces a mysterious new character who could prove vital to bringing this quest for god-like power to an end.
Carnage #9: One Weapon To Rule Them All
- Writing - 8/108/10
- Storyline - 7/107/10
- Art - 8/108/10
- Color - 9/109/10
- Cover Art - 10/1010/10
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