Athena IX #1
Written by Ryan Cady
Art by Phillip Sevy
Colors by Jeremy Colwell
Letters by Troy Peteri
Covers by Phillip Sevy & Jeremy Colwell, Atilio Rojo
Top Cow | Image Comics
Release Date: July 1, 2015
Cover Price: $3.99
The days of Aphrodite IX are a distant memory. Seven centuries have come and gone since the success of the Aphrodite Protocol, the primary goal of which was to save mankind. But that world is gone, replaced by a seemingly more violent and harsh reality. From their deep slumber arose Nine who would rule this planet, each in its own way. This is a story of but one of those fated to be a god amongst men. This tale is known as Athena IX #1.
The time of the Ascension is here; few would recognize that term, however. For the most part, it seems that people living are unaware of anything other than oppression. Of course, Athena herself calls it order. Located in the far north of the Old World, the less than hospitable region has been transformed into an industrial city-state where every citizen is given a task, a purpose. Every single person is a cog in the proverbial wheel that keeps their world contained and self sufficient.
Dissension in the ranks, as always, can be a ruler’s biggest problem. One would think that after sparing the ruling class from death, they would be more team oriented. But no, such is not to be. So when a small uprising occurs, the armed forces in place, the XVs, are prepared to deal with the unruly and misguided citizens. They XVs have even been given emotional dampeners so as to create a fair and unbiased police force. Because, freedom is overrated, right?
From the point of view of the citizens of New Athens, life is akin to indentured servitude. And while they may feel they are within their rights to revolt, Athena has a different view. And if you remember back at the beginning of this review, I did mention that she was destined to be a god amongst men. Remember? Well, as with most of the ancient gods, she’s not what people would call forgiving.
Scribe Ryan Cady does a phenomenal job of creating a believable world and group of characters in just slightly more than two dozen pages. The dialogue is spartan but evocative and poignant all at once. Phillip Sevy does a better than average job with the art in this issue. He offers up a couple of different styles that intermingle to give this book a definitive futuristic tone. Highly detailed panels are used intermittently with a simpler, more angular technique that delivers the consummate science-fiction-influenced setting.
While this was a lot different than the Aphrodite IX series, it is meant to be. There are some characteristics that are similar, but the differences far outweigh them. Again, it is meant to be the next step, the next evolution if you will. I know this is but one of several one-shot comics, but I found myself wanting more. Personally, I have no idea what the endgame for this series might be but so far, it’s been a hell of a ride. Top Cow has done a bang up job with this franchise and I hope to see much, much more. Do yourself a favor, check it out. Athena IX #1 is violent, full of intrigue, and not a little badass. How can you possibly say no?