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Demon Knights #20 - The Stone Door Review

5

This unlikely team of travelers embarks on a quest to find the Holy Grail.

The Good

One of the things I've really enjoyed about this series has been the art, and it's nice to see that the book's new artist Chad Hardin does a fantastic job as its new penciller. He does a solid job organizing his panels in this issue, giving readers an absolutely phenomenal first page. The rest of the issue is just as good: his panels are really easy to read and makes the reading experience as a whole a really enjoyable one. Overall, the art in this comic is a perfect compliment to Venditti's story. The first page will definitely grab you -- the art here is beautiful, the structure is a bit obscure but still easy to read, and it also does a phenomenal job recapping the previous story arc's events for readers who may have missed what happened. It's a great way to start the issue and captures Ystin's nightmare brilliantly. Although the romantic relationship between Ystin and Exoristos seems to be behind them, the creative team does a fantastic job depicting the loyalty that exists between these two characters. The first few panels of this issue really serve to establish that fact and do a good job introducing their commitment to readers.

Once again, Venditti knocks the interactions between these characters out of the park. He does a perfect job balancing humor, adventure and serious moments in this issue, using characters like Vandal Savage as a means of entertaining readers in a humorous way. Hardin's pencils perfectly compliment these panels, capturing the essence of these characters, their interactions, and their expressions brilliantly. You can really sense the emotion through their expressions.

One of the cool things we see here in this issue is a call back to something that we saw in Brian Azzarello's WONDER WOMAN series. This issue gives us a bit more insight into the way that the Amazon warriors work and explains how they obtain their information. It's a great scene and it's a cool little nod to something that was previously explained about the Amazons and their tactics in a different series. Having that moment appear here gives the series a sense of continuity and cohesiveness, something that is important to making this series feel relevant as a whole.

The Bad

It is honestly difficult to pinpoint anything that was actually bad about this issue. If I had to make one complaint, however, it would probably be that the issue moves a bit too quickly. The reconciliation between Jason and Vandal Savage, for example, happens a bit too quickly and therefore breezes right through.

The Verdict

Overall, this issue was nearly perfect. I loved the pencils and the vibrant colors we get in this issue and I felt the art really complimented the story as a whole. The issue itself is a perfect jumping on point for new readers because it launches a new story arc while maintaining the repercussions of the previous issue and previous arc in a way that is interesting and does not feel overbearing. The result is a really fantastic story that feels as if it comes alive through gorgeous pencils and vibrant colors. It is a comic that is bound to leave you laughing and entertained from beginning to end, and one I highly doubt would leave you disappointed.

17 Comments
Posted by FlashDamn

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

Posted by Billy Batson

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

Yeah, it's in the danger zone because of its sales.

BB

Posted by Mercy_

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

It's sales numbers are very worrisome.

Moderator
Posted by millennium

@flashdamn: yes its in the button 5 of sales for dc so it may be getting cancelled when they do the next wave later this year or early next year its sad really this is are really good book

Posted by bladewolf

Definitely a good issue, though honestly Hardin's art is only so-so in my book. The opening and ending pages were drawn very well, but the ones in the middle weren't as good.

That said, it's definitely a solid issue, and the best comic I bought this week. I hope more people get into this series, because if it gets cancelled I'll be very, very sad.

Edited by FlashDamn

@flashdamn said:

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

Yeah, it's in the danger zone because of its sales.

BB

@flashdamn: yes its in the button 5 of sales for dc so it may be getting cancelled when they do the next wave later this year or early next year its sad really this is are really good book

If it is this good why are its sales not good

Posted by Billy Batson

@flashdamn:

Lack of marketing, it not having big name characters and readers being sheep.

BB

Posted by broo1232

@billy_batson said:

@flashdamn said:

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

Yeah, it's in the danger zone because of its sales.

BB

@millennium said:

@flashdamn: yes its in the button 5 of sales for dc so it may be getting cancelled when they do the next wave later this year or early next year its sad really this is are really good book

If it is this good why are its sales not good

It's a niche title it's not got that many headlining characters there all fairly obscure if you stuck a well known character in this it would sell better but you've got a load of minor characters in this book. Also it doesn't get that much press coverage and it's not really covered in news compared to books like Batman.

Edited by ptigrusmagus

Have been thinking of getting into this series. At 20 I'm wondering if I should go with trades or is #20 a decent jumping on point?

Posted by Outside_85

@ptigrusmagus: It is the start of a new story line so yes, it does however build on the last 3 issues, further back you don't really need to go.

Posted by I_Stay_Puft

@flashdamn said:

is this series in the danger of getting cancelled cause I hear a lot of good reviews on it but people talk about it getting cancelled?

Yeah, it's in the danger zone because of its sales.

BB

We talking like Top Gun danger zone or don't go in there cause there's nuclear waste type of danger zone?

Posted by Cassidy_ORourke

@i_stay_puft: Nuclear waste type. The sales figures for April put it at 12,941. DC's cancellation threshold is somewhere around the 20K mark.

Edited by dreamfall31

Just borrowed the first trade from the library and will read it! If I like it I'll consider picking it up, though it looks like it's the lowest selling DC series right now.

Posted by Akindoodle

@dreamfall31: lowest selling? All the more reason to try it out. We may be able to save it for a while yet. Especially because as far as I know, none of the characters bar Xanadu (and Savage. Kinda?) are in the C.21st DC Universe and they're pretty sound characters. I'd love to see them around more often

Posted by soumya

Chad Hardin's art is great,though I enjoyed Bernard Chang's work more.It's great to see someone worthy of his capability has taken the job.I hope this book will stay.I am really fond of the fantasy stories of medieval times.This book got potential too.such great characters,.....such good writer and artist.People,..keep reading this book.Don't let it get cancelled.

Edited by bloggerboy

Vandal Savage reading Kama Sutra. Hilarious!

Will be getting the trade for Vol. 2 at the end of the month for sure.

Edited by The Mighty Monarch

This issue felt kind of hollow to me, especially the battle with the kraken-thing, it just played out like an obligatory battle that paled in comparison to some of the random encounter from before.

And I wouldn't agree about Chad Hardin's art. It's not bad, but something feels really off about it for most of the issue.