16th Oct2017

‘Assassin’s Creed: Uprising #8′ Review

by Dean Fuller

Written by Alex Paknadel, Dan Watters | Art by Jose Holder | Published by Titan Comics

Assassins_Creed_Uprising_8_A

With all the great stuff out there on the shelves at the moment, even the great stuff being put out by Titan Comics alone, this title has fallen a little under the radar. Although I wouldn’t put it at the very top of my reading pile, it is consistently a solid, entertaining read. Paknadel and Watters take the best elements of the games and mythology, fuse them with their own ideas, and create a book that while being wholly true to the Assassin’s Creed brand is definitely its own creature.

So to date we now know that the followers of Juno, known as The Instruments of the First Will, are trying to bring about a New World Order by destroying everything. That means destroying both the Templars and the Assassins, and both groups have had double agents working within them. So, an uneasy alliance is needed for the Templars and Assassins to defeat the First Will. To that end, Master Templar and secret Black Cross Otso Berg has been using the memories of former Black Cross Albert Bolden to track down the Koh-i-Noor, a powerful artifact that could help them win.

Charlotte, one of the top Assassins, has previously used the Animus to jump into ancestor Ignacio Cardona, who fought with Bolden during the Spanish Civil War, despite them being Templar and Assassin. And the arrival of ‘Nobby Clarke’, secretly Rufus Grosvenor, has upset the apple cart, an Assassin who is definitely not what, or whom, he seems, and one who has turned Cardonas’s own cell against him. That same cell ambush Cardona and Bolden, and they narrowly escape, though at the cost now that the Assassins think Bolden’s Templar ways have corrupted Cardona. Time to confront Grosvenor face to face.

Grosvenor, of course, is no Assassin. He serves Juno, and needs Cardona to activate something in the Koh-i-Noor. Cardona plays along, but actually destroys the stone, so nobody can have it. Or so he pretends. He gives the illusion of destroying it, but actually leaves it buried in a mass grave. Grosvenor decides to take off, which he does with Glaucia, formerly an Assassin but now with Grosvenor. In the present Berg leaves the Animus, having learnt all he can. He now knows where the Koh-i-Noor is. He knows they need to get to it before The Instruments do, or they will be able to resurrect Juno then and there. Time to call the Assassins and Templar alliance to work, utilising a top secret base that has never been compromised. Up to now, as they will discover next issue.

As I said at the top of the review, another solid read. Plenty of action, some plot developments, a little bit of mythology tweaking, and fun was had by all. Paknadel and Watters can really write this book in their sleep by now, so well versed are they in the characters. My only slight criticism / observation is that they have story dictate the characters, rather than characters drive the story. When characters, like Charlotte this issue, aren’t driving the main plot they seemingly disappear, only to return when they are needed. We need to see important characters around all the time, regardless of their part in individual issues.

Jose Holder’s art was its normal scratchy, free styling self, although he cut loose a little more this time round with several pages with minimal dialogue and text, and completely reliant on the art to dictate the pace and storytelling. Although the art has plenty of detail, sometimes a page could do with losing a panel to not be so congested. Squeezed in panels don’t do the story, or art, justice.

So who knew Albert Bolden would be so important to the Assassins and Templars, both past and present, when he first appeared? Not me for one. Will he last past the end of next issue? Only Paknadel and Watters know, and they ain’t telling (yet).

***½  3.5/5

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