By Eric M. Esquivel, Jerry Gaylord & Gabriel Cassata
There is no denying that the Marvel character of Loki is incredibly popular in comics right now. So when you see an independent book called Loki: Ragnarok and Roll, just the name Loki can carry a lot of baggage with it. Fortunately this iteration of Loki stays true to his original silver-tongued god origin that has been around forever but also finds a fun way to put a fresh twist on him.
Loki has been banned, by his father Odin, to our modern human world after a disastrous diplomatic mission he went on with his warrior brother, Thor. With Loki having a bumpy relationship with both his father and his half-brother, he seems to embrace the modern world more than even he thought. The basic concept of a god coming to our world and embracing the rock and roll lifestyle can seem corny but the way Esquivel writes it actually makes this a really fun read. He balances both goofy and serious tones well, that make the whole issue thoroughly enjoyable. Going into Loki: Ragnarok and Roll without any preface was quite surprising and any doubts or worries were quickly squashed with a well written story and entertaining characters.
When you look at the first issue of Loki: Ragnarok and Roll you immediately notice the incredibly stunning cover (by Alexis Ziritt) but once you get into the book the art by Jerry Gaylord is very different. Even though I personally was hoping for the entire book to look like the cover, Gaylord’s art was a pleasant surprise and was actually better suited for this story. Gaylord does an incredible job of matching the playful tone of this book with a style of fun and charming art. Combine that with some bright colors from Gabriel Cassata, and together they make every page amusing to read and just gaze at. One particular scene is when Loki and Thor return from their mission to find Odin hosting a dinner for a variety of other gods like Hercules, Nanook, Fujin, Ganesha and Tu Er Shen (my new favorite). That whole scenario really signified the lighthearted nature of this series.
This first issue was a good start to a series that most people might glance over and not think twice about. However, if you give it a chance, you may find yourself surprised by how much Loki: Ragnarok and Roll will make you smile while reading it. Loki: Ragnarok and Roll is a well written series that doesn’t take itself too seriously and is just here to entertain you, so you should just sit back and enjoy it for what it is and join me into looking forward to the next issue.