Empress #6 Review (Icon/Marvel Comics)

Publisher: Icon/Marvel Comics
Author: Mark Millar
Artist: Stuart Immonen
Release Date: 21st September 2016

Better late than never. Right?

We all know that feeling. You know, the feeling you get when you’re so engrossed into your favourite TV show that it almost physically hurts when an episode ends and you have to wait an entire week before your next fix. This was especially worse growing up in the 90’s and early 2000’s, but I suppose Netflix has eased that pain a little. Unfortunately, no such media morphine exists when it comes to comics, and reading Empress gives me that physical pain in my heart when I finish a comic and have to wait an entire month, sometimes longer, for the next issue.

It’s safe to say that Empress #6 left me with the biggest pain in my heart this entire run. It was amazing.

One thing that has been consistent in this run is the level of action and suspense we are subject to each week, and this issue only upped the stakes even more. The issue opens with our kids in danger, following from the last issue when they tried to blow up the very ship that they were on. In comics, movies or games, you always expect the heroes to be safe and sound, no matter what the situation, but this opening act gave you a feeling of “What if?”, with the possibility that Millar might do the unspeakable and kill off some of the main characters.

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With that though, the main body of this issue gives out heroes a well deserved break, they’re actually making some progress and they can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel. There’s a sense of hope, a sense of delight and happiness, but knowing that there’s another issues left this can’t go on for too long. Our heroes finally make it to the sanctuary of Emporia’s sister, where they are warmly greeted and welcomed with open arms and unrelenting support. This is the well deserved break I was talking about a few seconds ago, but this break doesn’t last long, at least the viewer is made aware however our heroes are still in their own blissful world. I won’t spoil what happens here because the twist that comes from this issue is one I genuinely did not see coming in any capacity, but not only that it is follow by another twist even bigger than the first, that I urge you to read and discover on your own.

Empress has became one of my favourite comic books this year. The phenomenal writing that not only ups the suspense factor with every  panel but keep your emotionally hooked is some of the best I have seen since Scott Snyder’s run on Batman (which continues to be awesome). Couple that with Immonen’s incredible art style, and we have a comic book that will be considered a classic in years to come. As always, Millar leaves us with another killer cliffhanger that had me bubbling with excitement for the last issue, which has been confirmed by the man himself to be a spectacular double length issue. The wait for the last issue won’t be as long as the wait between #5 and #6, and if you have not been reading this wonderful Millar and Immonen Space Opera love child, then please do yourself a favour and fix that.

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