Jan 23, 2009

Dragonlance Comics (Issue 15) - High Sorcery

The Test

High Sorcery part 3This issue starts off with Myrella wandering around the ruins of Neraka, specifically the Temple of Takhisis. She's not sure how she got there, but she soon hears the cry of someone trapped under some rubble. Poking around she uncovers the dark elf Kalthanan. As Myrella questions Kal, they are suddenly attacked by a pair of magic wielding draconians and then confronted by another draconian who reveals himself to be the red mage Az-araz-ar. Az then attacks Myrella and Kal destroys the red robe mage.

Meanwhile in another dimension, Par-Salian and Ladonna discusses with Riverwind and Goldmoon what's going on. It's revealed that they were searching for "the lost tower of high sorcery" to retrieve it's ancient magics for all wizards. In finding the tower, they also found that the spirit of the renegade black robe wizard named Spyranus was within the tower. Also, it's revealed that they have unwittingly shown Spyranus the way back to Krynn. It's also surmised that Spryanus was responsible for the draconians attacking the Tower of High Sorcery (in issue 13). Just then the party is confronted by Spyranus, in the form of a stone golem, and several other stone golem minions.

Elsewhere, Kal explains to Myrella that within his soul is also the soul of his murderous father Thanakan (as detailed at the end of issue 8). With the torment in his soul, Kal is looking for a magic item (once owned by Raistlin) called the Mindbender. Kal hopes to use it to destroy one of competing souls, thou he doesn't care if it's his or his father's soul that wins in the end. Myrella tries to restrain Kal to prevent the possibility if Thanakan taking over Kal's body.

Meanwhile, the fight against Spyranus continues, and appears to be going badly for Goldmoon and the others.

Back on Krynn, Myrella feels some force pulling at her (like she had previously seen happen to Goldmoon and Riverwind). She grabs Kal at just the right moment to cause both of them to be pulled away from the ruins of Neraka and separate Kal from the Mindbender. The two wind up in the middle of the fight with Spyranus.

At the Tower of High Sorcery in Wayreth, Justarius, Dalamar, and Dunbar follow Myrella's progress with great interest.

The last page features the first Dragonlance Comic letter's page.

Commentary

This was a really great issue... I felt the story with Myrella and Kal moved along nicely, unlike the other plotline (the fight with Spyranus), and the interludes with the wizards at Wayreth are a bit confusing... they don't seem surprised when she appears in the middle of the fight with Spyranus... did they know where Ladonna and Par-Salian were? Is this part of her Test? Isn't dealing with someone like Spyranus (who is challenging for a party including two arch mages and two Heroes of the Lance) a bit beyond what such a low level mage should deal with?

Art wise, the issue was again penciled by Jim Janes, but this time around, he completely made up for the issues I pointed out in my last review. This issues version of Myrella is much better than before, and more in line with her first appearance. Also the other realm is once again a bit more weird that he drew it before. Great improvement this time around.

I'm really interested in the next issue, since the final part of an arc seems to be the hardest for Dan Mishkin to properly write.