Posted September 10, 2012 by Jon Burrows in Books & Comics

Review: Savage Dragon Issue #181

Review: Savage Dragon Issue #181


I’ve been with the Finn since issue #1 and his journey has never been an easy one. Issue #181 has him resolutely laying down the law. For those of you who’ve never read an issue of Savage Dragon, he was a hero abandoned on Earth with no memory at the advent of a rise in super crime in the city of Chicago. Over the years he’s joined the police force, gone freelance, been stripped of flesh to the bone, bounced between dimensions, witnessed dying universes, been mind-wiped, and cloned. Several issues back he was reunited with the ship containing all  of his remaining race. With only his memories of his time on Earth, he has set out to try to help his race as their leader. His people have been trapped on this ship without a home for too long.

This issue ties up some long-standing plot threads. We finally learn Dragon’s true age. Dragon is able to exact vengeance for his friend and ally, Vanguard, destroying all the invading alien race that wiped out his species on their home planet. Dragon’s people live by a stodgy code of manufactured principles and nearly unflappable pacifism.  By clearing the life from that planet, they now view Dragon as a monster capable of Genocide. Dragon, ever the pragmatist, says they deserved it; he knows how violent they are and that these invaders will continuity doing the same to every planet they come across. This adds to the irony that Earth has just recently survived and invasion by the same evil invading aliens. Dragon’s own biological son has broken their tenants to challenge his own biological father to a fight to the death for the right to rule. Dragon is quick to point out the hypocrisy of a peaceful race who settle difference by blood match. He quickly ends the match with his son, having had storied years of more fighting experience against actual opponents, not just training robots.

With the planet cleared, Dragon’s people now no longer have to be a wandering nomadic race, constantly looking for a new home on their Battlestar. Dragon advocates for change in their society. After doing things the same way for so long with no change, he suggests democracy and accountability. In the first open election in their race’s history, Dragon wins by a landslide. He abdicates to his second, Lorella, who doubts Dragon, but recognizes the need their people have to rally around a strong leader. Dragon is anxious to return to the only home he really remembers, Earth. Things have gotten quite messy there. Everyone believes Dragon to be dead, and the alien invaders have killed millions in the short span of six hours. It seems like every time Chicago starts to rebuild, someone steps in to tear it all down. By the end of this issue there is a lot of good setup for what comes next, like Vanguard returning to his home planet and finding it full of Dragon’s people, Overlord and Darklord itching to exert their influence over Earth once more, and Dragon’s triumphant return home to a city who’s last memory of him is as the bloodthirsty conqueror, Kurr.

Geek Smash comic rating: 78/100

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Jon Burrows

An exclusive writer for Geek Smash, Jon hails from Mississippi and has a passion for music, comic-books, and writing. He collects antique cars and enjoys shooting handguns. Jon sings in his church choir, volunteers his time helping the Salvation Army at local events and doubles as Santa during Christmas season.