Review - Mortifera #2 & #3

Demons are a fickle bunch. If they're not seeking to enslave mankind, they're seeking to wreak as much as havoc as possible. Or they're destined to serving some master for whatever purpose. Generally, they find common causes to rally around; however, there are times when not all demons think alike, as is the case in Mortifera #2 & #3 from Mortifera Comics.

The issues are written by Stephen Frost and illustrated by Sarah Partington.

Catherine and Ethan are sibling demon hunters, joining with a demon summoned named Durin. Durin has teamed up with the duo to go after Kanisus, another demon who recently ran roughshod through the Demon's Keep, a stronghold protecting a myriad of demon blood and weapons. The premise behind Mortifera is that demons can be summoned to do the bidding of the summoner and then they're free to walk the Earth.

That brings Durin into the equation. He's summoned to aid in tracking down Kanisus, who's determined to destroy the world. Throw in some castle crashing, undead warriors and other demons doing the bidding of Kanisus and you've got a medieval tale with higher stakes. With Catherine and Ethan as the last in the Mortifera bloodline, it's up to them to stop Kanisus, but it won't be easy.

The tale is actually quite intriguing. The Mortifera as demon hunters is quite effective and is similar to the Belmont lineage in Castlevania. To say that it's a copy isn't fair to Frost as it isn't. There's a lot of history though by positioning the story around Catherine and Ethan, as the Mortifera and Exturminata have spent centuries battling demons. Durin and Kanisus are both demons on the opposite sides of the spectrum, while both maintain sound reasoning in their motivations.

The second and third issues pitch a lot of the medieval travel than battle. That's ok though, because it seems to be building up to an inevitable face-off between Kanisus and the Mortifera crew. Durin is a quiet demon, but he shows why he's worth being summoned, showcasing a talent in fighting. He's also well-traveled, demonstrating a knowledge of history that can only come with being an almost ageless demon.

Partington's art is equally matched. It's very stylish in a way, relying on an animated feel to set the tone for the medieval setting. Durin is illustrated with a calm ferocity, while Kanisus showcases more of a bloodthirst. Her demons are all shown with their actions reflecting their personalities. One of the demons looks a lot like Wrex in Mass Effect, right down the wide, toothy grin.

There's a fairly big turn of events in the third issue that shows Frost isn't afraid to take risks with the series. The stakes are stacked up even more against the Mortifera, with Durin likely playing an even bigger role than he has to this point. Kanisus has been fairly quiet in terms of actual presence in the, ahem, present, but he's a big demon with bigger ambitions. Should be interesting to see them all clash.

Mortifera #3 is available now at the Mortifera website and check out the launch trailer below.