Comics, Reviews

The Sacrificers #4 Review: A Cost Too Great

Uncover the horrifying truth behind the ceremony that keeps the world of Harlos in balance in the latest issue of Remender and Fiumara's "The Sacrificers."

The Sacrificers #4 Review Cover
Image: Image Comics
By: Javier ReyesFeb 23, 2024, 2:14 AM

The Sacrificers #4

Review
Rating
9
Good
The Sacrificers #4 Full Cover

Writer: Rick Remender

Artist: Max Fiumara

Publisher: Image Comics

Release Date: October 31, 2023

Format: Single-issue

Remender and Fiumara deliver an intriguing new issue that masterfully builds up the horrors and tensions happening within the world of the gods.

Being a big fan of Rick Remender, The Sacrificers was a comic that I first picked up based on name value alone. Now that it's on its fourth issue, the comic has exceeded far beyond my initial expectations. The series has been a masterclass in world-building, with each installment methodically painting the picture of how beautiful, tragic, and horrific the world of Harlos is.

This latest issue unravels more of the story’s mysteries and horrible truths, revealing the cracks within Harlos’ “perfect” utopia. As methodical as the world-building has been throughout the series, the story developments in this issue reminded me that this fantastic journey is just beginning.

Rokus speaks to the GalaImage: Image Comics

Overview

Soluna watches from her bedroom as her father, the sun king Rokus, toasts his fellow lords of Harlos to a hearty feast of the sacrifice. While most of the lords celebrate their “well-deserved” reward, Luna, the ruler of the moon and mother of Soluna, voices her displeasure at the ceremony. She believes the lords who fill the room are more parasites than gods. It doesn’t take long for Luna to leave the others to their cruel and horrific business.

It’s when the lords partake in the glowing blue drink created from the Sacrificers that their true faces are revealed. It seems there’s truth behind Luna’s words, and she is not the only one in the room who disagrees with the ceremony’s twisted and selfish nature.

Luna speaks her mindImage: Image Comics

Review

Something that continues to amaze me about The Sacrificers is its meticulous approach to storytelling and world-building. Instead of moving at a mile-a-minute, like many of Remender’s other titles, the slower pace gives a more intimate look into the dark intricacies within the comic’s strange world. While the last issue revealed the truth behind the sacrifice in horrific detail, this latest installment delves into the twisted desires that fuel the grisly event. Knowing how gruesome the sacrifice ceremony is makes the happiness and cheer of the gods as they toast their “elixir of life” all the more unsettling. If there’s one message to take away from these last two issues, it’s that these gods need to get hit by some divine retribution ASAP.

As much as I wanted to see what happens next with Pigeon and the other Sacrificers, this latest issue adds so many intriguing layers to the story that I can’t be mad at the drastic shift in perspective. Not only does the chapter give a first-hand look into the true heartless and selfish nature of the gods, but it also teases the cracks forming within their seemingly “perfect” society. Apart from Luna, who is a standout in this issue, there is one other character who is surprisingly showing signs of shifting allegiances. It’s a fascinating development that I did not expect to see, and it ties directly into Soluna’s most significant moment in the series so far.

Speaking of Soluna, her finally getting time to shine is something I’ve wanted to see since the series began. It’s a brilliant storytelling move for this issue to explore the atrocities of the gods through Soluna’s conflicted perspective. It makes her role in the story more defined as the classic character trope that is “destined to break the cycle.” Her act of rebellion at the end of the issue gives Soluna’s character the solid footing she needs within the story, effectively setting her journey on the course to intertwine with Pigeon’s.

The art team of Max Fiumara and Dave McCaig once again deserve a special mention. That’s something I expect myself to say a lot throughout this comic series. But for this issue, in particular, there’s a moment told through a two-page spread that reveals the motivations of Rokus and his fellow selfish gods. It’s through the combined works of Fiumara and McCaig that a scene so horrifying and poignant comes off so beautifully. That balance of beauty and horror is emblematic of the series at this point, and the art does wonders in expressing that.

Rokus gives a toastImage: Image Comics

Final Thoughts

The Sacrificers continues to be incredible in its detailed approach to world-building. Everything from the land’s scenic diversity to the clashing cultures of people and gods is expressed through such detail that it brings every corner of Harlos to life. I can’t wait to see what fascinating discoveries there are to make about the story and its world as the comic gears up for its first story arc finale.

Why You Should Read The Sacrificers

  • The Sacrificers has some of the best world-building you can find in comics today. 
  • Max Fiumara’s art is jaw-dropping across every panel. 
  • The methodical storytelling keeps you hooked on every facet of the story.
TAGGED: Image Comics
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