Written by Anthony Del Col, Conor McCreery | Art by Neil Edwards | Published by Titan Comics | Format: Paperback, 32pp
The first arc of this title, Trial By Fire, turned out to be great fun. Sure, it had a few ups and downs along the way but ultimately was a solid addition to the Assassin’s Creed universe, and not only established a status quo but established one and then promptly ripped it up. Our heroine was/is Charlotte de la Cruz, recruited by the ‘good’ Assassins Brotherhood to fight the ‘bad’ Templars. Along the way though, she soon discovered ‘good’ and ‘bad’ are far too simplistic terms for the Assassins/ Templar conflict, as both sides have very dirty hands, something she discovers at great cost at the end of the last issue. So like the second act in a solid action film, where can she go from here?
The new arc, Setting Sun, is by the same creative team as the previous 5 issues, which is nice both to maintain continuity and because they are all actually very good indeed. We start where the last issue ended, Charlotte and the remains of her Assassins cell, Kody and Galina, on the run from the Templars and in hiding. After a failed assassination attempt on them, Charlotte and Kody re-use the Animus, and Charlotte finds herself transported back to an ancestor in 1536 Peru, during the time of the Incan Empire. This is a nice development, both in location and ancestor. Sixteenth century Peru is obviously a world away from the Salem location of Tom Stoddard from the last adventure, and having a new female ancestor, Quila, opens up all sorts of situations, especially as this era is even more condescending to women, no matter their ability or skill.
The story unfolding in her ancestors time starts as a pretty straightforward one of a woman trying to prove herself in a man’s world, which contrasts with Charlotte’s situation in the present where female assassins are regarded every bit as highly as their male counterparts. However, a moment of rashness on Quila’s part leads to her discovering a planned assassination of the Incan Emperor Manco, in cahoots with the empire-building Spanish. She plans to warn him, but soon discovers the conspiracy runs very deep. We then cut back to the modern day, and the issue ends on a shocking note for one of the team. The use of the two present and past narratives, and the way they are used together, is skillfully done, and if the previous arc is anything to go by Charlotte will gain a lot from her time with her ancestor.
This was a nice, strong start to the next stage in Charlotte’s story, and one of the rare occasions when more of the same is not a complaint, but an endorsement. The same sense of adventure, action, and suspense permeates through, with the added dash of exotic adventuring ancestors. The end was quite a shock too, considering how lucky these three (Charlotte, Kody, and Galina) were to escape the Templars last issue. Neil Edwards art is as superb as ever, giving a strong visual flow to the story with plenty of large panel splashes giving it a feeling of scale, of size and importance. He does an equally good job depicting both 2016 Mexico City and 1536 Peru, bringing some nice visual styling and flair.
This issue maintained the high standards of the previous five, and there was no let-up for Charlotte, as the story picks right up from the events of the last issue. It read like a strong episode of a television series, and is exactly the kind of episodic entertainment that gets you excited to come back for the next installment.
Assassin’s Creed #6 is out now from Titan Comics