Rather than doing a standard review about Mortifera since it’s been out for quite some time, I’m just going to gush about how much I liked the pretty shiny now that I finally excavated it from the black hole that is my dining room table. I received my copy of the print Mortifera last summer as a backer reward from the creator’s Kickstarter campaign. I also got two great T-shirts and a hoard of button pins that are buried in the pile of books and crap on my table. I think the pins are now breeding with the dust bunnies and insect corpses to create tiny Mortifera style demons.
I spent most of the last several months petting the pretty shiny cover. I love glossy hardcovers, but I prefer to buy eBooks or paperbacks for budgetary reasons. Besides if all my books were glossy hardcovers I probably wouldn’t get much else done with my time; I’d sit around alternately petting dogs/cats and the books all day.
The other joy I got from the physical copy of Mortifera is that it, like many other graphic novels, utilizes the slick paper that feels nice when you rub it between your fingers. I love fancy paper, and since childhood books with the slick paper always seemed special to me (probably because when you’re 2 or 3 no one wants your sticky fingers on their coffee table books with the glossy pages).
So what is this actually about?
What if the Dark Ages weren’t just a time period where knowledge became suppressed? What if the term referred to demons being released into our world and trying to destroy life as we know it? Two demon hunting factions, the religious Exturminata and the secular Mortifera, arose to battle the evil. They succeeded for a time, but the demons are trying to rise again.
Catherine and Ethan are the last living Mortifera in Ireland, and, with the help of a demon sidekick, Durin, they are going to face down the potential storm! However, there are plenty of tests ahead of them, and sometimes being willing isn’t enough to get by. However, Stephan Frost and Sarah Partington avoid toeing the cliche plotlines present in a lot of these type of stories, and a few of the twists genuinely surprised me.