What a beautifully crafted surprise from Paul Cornell!
It's hard not to appreciate DC's willingness to go outside the traditional superhero box and include titles like "Demon Knights" in their New 52 relaunch. It's even better when these unique titles are actually high quality books. Such is the case with Paul Cornell's "Demon Knights" #1. And to think this was a book I almost passed on. From the first page, Cornell creates a mythical, magical world and fills it with wonderful and intriguing characters such as Etrigan and Vandal Savage. The story moves at a crisp and fluid pace, introducing each character without getting bogged down with long exposition or pointless dialogue. It's a story that's cleverly crafted and features just the right amount of action blended with some really cool fantasy elements. Things get wild at the end and the final splash page ensures a fiery action-packed next issue.
Perfectly complimenting Cornell's story is the gorgeous art of Diogenes Neves. The issue opens with a beautiful splash page that encapsulates everything great about the look of the book. Whether it's the wonderful character design, the sharp period detail, or Neves' ability to capture the feeling and emotions of the characters, everything jumps off the page with a real energy and vibrancy. I also loved his cool page layouts and overlapping panels. Even Tony Daniel's fantastic cover adds to awesome feel of the issue.
I was interested in "Demon Knights" but I had no idea I would enjoy it this much. I love the direction of the story and it's magical period setting. Cornell introduces us to some really great characters and he handles each of them well. This book is loads of fun and unlike anything else in DC's line of books. This was such a wonderful surprise and definitely one of the best books to come out of the New 52 so far.