Released this week in comic shops everywhere, writer Ron Marz’s first sold out storyline of Image/Top Cow’s Magdalena collects the first six issues of the series, featuring writing from Marz, art by Nelson Blake II, David Marquez, Sal Regla, and covers by Ryan Sook.

We talked a bit about the first couple of issues of Magdalena in our regular Funnybooks show, but didn’t really discuss the last half of the storyline, primarily because we didn’t want to repeat ourselves.  That being said…in case you didn’t listen to the episodes….just f*cking buy this book.  Ron Marz has very publicly stated that, despite having an immensely popular Witchblade run (about to come to an end), he came to Top Cown primarily because he wanted to write Magdalena, and it shows.

Magdalena tells the story of Patience, who’s only the most current Magdalena.  See, the Magdalena have actually been the official protector and warrior of the Catholic Church for over two thousand years, sworn to defend the Faith with the Spear of Destiny against all manner of supernatural threats.  They’re the descendants of Christ Himself, but Patience…well, she’s actually lost her patience with the church.  She’s abandoned the church and struck out on her own, to fight creatures outside the sanctity of the church.  However, her old employers have come across evidence that the Antichrist has been born.  Not only that, he’s about to unleash the devil upon Earth.

Magdalena Volume I is probably the best place to get the first storyline, as many of the issues are sold out.  And with good reason.  Not only is the story extremely well written (as would be expected from Marz), the book is freakin’ gorgeous.  The art team knocks it out of the park with this book, with subtle references to religious iconography, and art that works well in both quiet scenes and action sequences.

While I enjoyed reading this story in floppies, I really think it’s stronger to read as a whole, as you may feel that not enough happens in some single issues (some reviewers noted that towards the middle of the storyline).  Still, each issue does have an important key piece to the storyline that will be stronger when reading them all together.  At only about $15, you’re actually getting it for cheaper than if you had bought the floppies.

HUGE RECOMMENDATION for The Magdalena Volume I.  Be careful not to pick up The Magdalena Origins Volume 1 which, while good and featuring art by Lady Mechanika’s Joe Benitez, is not this book!

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