The Darkness: Vicious Traditions #1

Writer: Ales Kot Artist: Dean Ormston Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: March 5, 2014 Cover Price: $3.99 Critic Reviews: 9 User Reviews: 2
7.9Critic Rating
7.8User Rating

ALES KOT (ZERO, WILD CHILDREN) joins DEAN ORMSTON (Judge Dredd, Predator, Books of Magick) to deliver this special Tales of Darkness one-shot! The Roman Empire is on the edge of collapse. A part of its army is stranded deep within the Visigoth territory. The barbarian leader wakes up in a mass grave. He should be dead; yet he is not.

  • 10
    AIPT - Sam Roche Mar 5, 2014

    This is a brilliant artistic achievement and should be read and enjoyed by all. Definitely not a gorefest or horror comic like the cover advertises, but rather a study of humans and their nature, set against the backdrop of something horrific. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Comics Bulletin - Ra'Chaun Rogers Mar 4, 2014

    I first encountered Dean Ormston's art in Sy Spencer's Books of Magick: Life During Wartime. His art was never the greatest in comics, but it works well in settings where people are being disemboweled or decapitated on a large scale. The most striking thing about the art is the eyes of the main character, which look like those of a diseased insect and matches the feral nature of the Visigothic warrior. This book is getting off to a great start and until Jackie returns I look forward to more stories of the Estacado clan. Read Full Review

  • 9.5
    Rhymes With Geek - Dante Cianni Mar 6, 2014

    Overall: The Darkness #1: Vicious Traditions is an entertaining book and welcome addition to The Darkness story. New readers picking this up this #1 as their intro into The Darkness series might need to do a little research to catch up, but longtime fans will appreciate Kot and Ormston's one-shot hot shot. Read Full Review

  • 8.3
    Florida Geek Scene - Jesse Scheckner Mar 5, 2014

    Vicious Traditions is not for the faint of heart, as there is gore galore within its tight 19 pages. One specific image involving a cauldron, a bunch of severed heads and some hot oil will stick with me for a while, I think. That being said, none of it feels gratuitous or unnecessary, and the story benefits from this grim, crimson conveyance. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Comic Bastards - Dustin Cabeal Mar 5, 2014

    The brilliant thing about this issue is that you don't need to know anything about The Darkness. It doesn't rely upon you having an extensive background with the character and while it's clear this isn't going to be an ongoing or a reboot of the franchise, it is a solid miniseries that may just introduce the character to people who have never read an issue before. Top Cow's one-off mini's are always some of my favorite because their character's unique pasts have a rich and extensive history to play with. This issue does just that and in doing so is entertaining and well worth the purchase. Read Full Review

  • 7.5
    Unleash The Fanboy - Harrison Rawdin Mar 5, 2014

    The Darkness: Viscous Traditions (One-Shot) is without a doubt an acceptable extension for this property but one that isn't necessary except for die-hard fanboys and fangirls. Recommended. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    Front Towards Gamer - Lido Mar 4, 2014

    As is, though, this is still a very fun action issue, and is only that disappointing for how good the writing around the action is. The artwork does a lot to complement the story with heavy usage of shadows and shading that blend nicely with the coloring and the excesses of gore and violence. As I've stressed throughout this review, The Darkness: Vicious Traditions is a very fun and action-packed comic, and the gore induced by all this ancient savagery is easy enough to get into and I do recommend it. I just wish the creators had been willing to flex their narrative muscles a bit as they clearly have the talent for it. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    All-Comic - Dan Pennacchia Mar 7, 2014

    The story is not one that shakes the ground. It is simplistic, in some ways, and ends almost as melancholic as it began. For something with such violence, the quiet of the book stands out the most. Kot's narration through Estacado is incredibly poignant in The Darkness: Vicious Traditions. He brings a different lens to the world of fighting wars and national pride. He puts a face to the enemy and the almost unavoidable trajectory of mankind being at odds with each other and in that sense the story feels almost tragic. War is bloody and grim and violent. It is full of events and actions that, to create hero stories, almost feels perverse. Kot's stance on such violence may be a different angle and subject matter than is typically found in the pages of The Darkness, but with Vicious Traditions, he is not shying away from such a viewpoint and it makes for a strong read even for readers who have never previously given The Darkness a try. Read Full Review

  • 5.0
    Horror DNA - James Ferguson Mar 6, 2014

    The Darkness: Vicious Traditions delivers on the blood and gore that can be expected from the other bearers of the artifact, but it's pretty light on the story.  Even if this was expanded to a longer series, there's not enough presented here to make me interested about this particular version of the Darkness.  I guess that's also a testament to the latest writers to take on the character, which was so friggin' good. Read Full Review

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