REVIEW: Sera the Royal Stars #7 — "Sumptuous … Sword and Sorcery"

With sweeping, sumptuous imagery and sword and sorcery set in a well-developed interplanetary milieu, Sera the Royal Stars #7 matches the fantasy work being churned out by bigger companies' sword for sword and spell for spell. Honestly, this visually surpasses a lot of that effort from licensed properties and the like. Unfortunately, with this huge cast in no fewer than four wildly disparate locations, getting to know individual characters is a guessing game. Is the ivory-skinned Antares a Brienne of Tarth type, all martial prowess and lack of social grace? Is the spellcaster Aldeberan cut from the Gandalf mold, with secrets and wisdom from previous eras? It's hard to tell, but the visuals from Mok, Angulo, and Campbell are so doggoned good looking, you want to know. Each landscape is specific and brilliantly depicted with crisp linework and vibrant coloring, all courtesy of Mok, Angulo, and Campbell. The visuals elevate this issue over the effect of its scant and somewhat scattered plot.

Sera the Royal Stars #7: Vault Comics, creative team: Jon Tsuei, Audrey Mok, Raul Angulo, Jim Campbell
Sera the Royal Stars #7: Vault Comics, creative team: Jon Tsuei, Audrey Mok, Raul Angulo, Jim Campbell

Overall, this work feels like it could easily expand into the hundred-plus page original graphic novel range and not break a sweat. As a periodical installment, alas, this moved some set pieces around and even managed a mildly effective reunion, but it's more a series of details in sequence than a story. With the per-issue price, that's a bit of a reach. A list of dramatis personae with a brief tagline or even in-issue captioning about who we're dealing with and how they relate to the world would help. This work feels more like trade bait, but it is in fact good looking trade bait, so if you're looking for a pretty good time, it might be worth your coin. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.

SERA & ROYAL STARS #7
(W) Jon Tsuei (A/CA) Audrey Mok
After a devastating tragedy, Sera and Antares flee the besieged Setareh, while Aldebaran and Fomalhaut are ambushed in the Forgotten Sea. Separated and growing ever weaker, the Royal Stars must seek forbidden help — from Algol, the Demon Star.

After a devastating tragedy, Sera and Antares flee the besieged Setareh, while Aldebaran and Fomalhaut are ambushed in the Forgotten Sea. Separated and growing ever weaker, the Royal Stars must seek forbidden help–from Algol, the Demon Star.

About Hannibal Tabu

Hannibal Tabu is a writer, journalist, DJ, poet and designer living in south Los Angeles with his wife and children. He's a winner of the 2012 Top Cow Talent Hunt, winner of the 2018-2019 Cultural Trailblazer award from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, his weekly comic book review column THE BUY PILE can be found on iHeartRadio's Nerd-O-Rama podcast, his reviews can be found on BleedingCool.com, and more information can be found at his website, www.hannibaltabu.com.
Plus, get free weekly web comics on the Operative Network at http://bit.ly/combatshaman.

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