Excavating Artifacts #1 To 13

Excavating Artifacts #1 To 13One comic that today's Bleeding Cool moments man didn't mention is Artifacts #13, the final issue in Top Cow's universe defining series. We ran an art preview on Monday, but today, we've got our best Topcowologists working on the series, and the moments that may have meant more.

There is a minor spoiler of Artifacts #13 at the end of the list below, and definite spoilers for previous issues. We'll run another piece on Artifacts #13 in its totality tomorrow, after it has all sunk in, but for now, this is what you have been reading… did you spot the relevance of everything listed?

  1. "Do I have your attention now, asshole?" – it's the opening line of Artifacts #1 (page 1) with Sara Pezzini pointing a gun at the viewer. Metacommentary?
  2. The Curator told Tom Judge that bringing the thirteen Artifacts together would mean that "this world… this universe" would come to an end (Artifacts #1). Only the end of Artifacts revealed that another universe existed prior to this one and one could exist after it. Oh, and the Curator was actually a man from the previous universe, known only as the "Survivor," who had been manipulating the Artifact bearers into position for years.
  3. Tom Judge told by the Curator that either Sara Pezzini or Jackie Estacado would "screw everything up" in the final battle for the universe (Artifacts #2, page 24). Of course, now knowing the Curator was the Survivor all along… which one screwed up and which did the right thing? Only time will tell…
  4. The Survivor used Aphrodite IV to recruit Ian Nottingham, Sabine, Glorianna Silver, Alina Enstrom, and Mali (Artifacts #3, pages 18-22) to his side; but why did each of them want to see the universe reborn? And are they better off in the new one?
  5. Jackie Estacado repeatedly said, "It's family. Nothing else matters." (Artifacts #2 and #5, page 21). Based on issue #13, he clearly meant it, but now that he has a new one… how far will he go to protect it?
  6. Hunter-Killer's tech genius, Interface, noted that she wasn't sure what purpose the Coin of Solomon served inside Aphrodite IV, but "definitely not a power supply." The question was never answered and with Aphrodite and the Coin reunited, what purpose does it serve?
  7. Glorianna told Michael Finnegan that the Curator only ever gave him the Glacier Stone as a "place holder." Did he always intend for Finn to die at the hands of Ian Nottingham?
  8. The matrix that the Survivor placed the captured Artifacts in (Artifacts #9) resembles a certain statue of a death goddess the Curator had Sara recover for him in a Witchblade 2-part story entitled, "Artifacts." Is it the same item?
  9. The 13th Artifact bearer ultimately came down on the side of Sara Pezzini and her allies, but as the "only survivor" of his monastic order, he might share more in common with the Survivor than the anyone else.
  10. Hope Pezzini was revealed to be the Codex for the Top Cow Universe and her life determined which universe would come to pass next. What role will she play in the new universe?
  11. The Survivor used some sort of inherent energy ability (Artifacts #11), which appears to be the same signature that as the power an infant Hope displayed back in First Born. What that means and the nature of those powers hasn't been revealed…
  12. Abby van Alstine and Mali finally had their rematch during the final battle, but their fates were left unresolved before the universe came to an end (Artfiacts #12). Will they have a role in the new universe?
  13. The biggest question remains… what is different about this new universe? Some things have been made apparent in Artifacts #13, but how far reaching are the changes? And what does it mean for the Top Cow Universe in 2012?


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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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