Title: God Of War
Writer: Marv Wolfman
Artist: Andrea Sorrentino
Colors: Andrea Sorrentino
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Release Date: March, 2011
Originally a six-issue mini-series published through Wildstorm, DC recently released the trade-paperback collection of God Of War. The story focuses on Kratos’ earlier days when he served as both a Spartan warrior, and champion of Ares. During this era, Kratos searched for the Ambrosia of Asclepius, a magical potion with healing qualities. This is the story of that journey.
Here come some spoilers and story specifics.
The potion in question- the Ambrosia of Asclepius- serves as the Maguffin for the story. It’s needed to heal Kratos’ daughter Calliope, who’s born suffering from a plague, and faces death. Only the strong are allowed to grow up and live in Spartan society. Kratos manages to bide his time, and is given until the next full moon to retrieve the potion.
Behind the scenes, Ares and the rest of the Gods have entered into a wager with each other regarding Kratos’ quest. The Gods have chosen champions to represent them, and those champions also seek the Ambrosia of Asclepius. From here, it becomes a race to see who reaches the fabled elixir first. The champions begin to cross paths, and the results are bloody and decisive.
Taken on it’s own, the story serves as a good prequel to the game series. It sets up a lot of who Kratos is, and where he comes from. However, the story is bogged down by horrible art. I’m sure given a more fitting genre (crime or something supernatural comes to mind), Sorrentino’s work could sing. Here, though, it’s muddy, confusing, and consistently pulls you out of the story as you try to figure out just what is going on from panel to panel. I can’t give this one a pass, even to the hardcore God of War fans out there. Skip it, and instead give something like Conan: Road of Kings or Skullkickers a shot.
Rating: 5 out of 10