Sometimes, you get lucky and there’s a story that not just ticks boxes on things you like, it ticks boxes on things you didn’t know you needed. Welcome to Cyn’s boxes that needed ticking. Thanks to Joe Corallo & Liana Kangas, I got my boxes ticked, coloured in and outlined perfectly. I’m serious- I’m a mythologist in the making, I have certain colours I default to- ask my closest friends, and when it comes to storylines- there are certain things that just make me happy. So, when She Said Destroy came out, I got excited for a mythology in space setting. I saw the colours and drawings…then something happened—I read it and little things about the story checked off boxes deep inside me. The lettering made me happy and the colours were just perfect, the shading and lines of certain characters were just amazing, and the mythos was impeccable. So at least you know, I found this story beyond worthy- it’s a step above the rest. Now that I’ve rambled, we get to the story itself.
Gods want to be worshipped, loved, and remembered. This is the way, and yet, even then, some want more. Brigid, the god of the sun, is one of those who has wanted more and sacrificed many things to make sure she wouldn’t be forgotten. One other god has remained, hidden in the stars, remembered among the fairies, and the queen of death. Brigid wants her gone and will send her children to wipe out all remembrance of her sibling and her worshippers. (I feel like we’re talking about a major motion picture here!) Brigid’s followers, specifically Vrixton, are willing to send the Light Knights to fight against Morrigan’s people.
Winona is chosen of Morrigan, even the fairies follow her. She is sent to the great forest to the fairy conclave to get word from the great Morrigan herself on what she wants the Fey witches to do in dealing with Brigid and her followers. Winona grabs her friend, Raul, and off they run to the deepest part of the forest as the others prepare for the coming battle. When they reach it and find the great Raven, I am both hopeful and amazed at the beauty of it. Then Morrigan appears, speaks, and I want to bow to my patron deity. She is divine perfection. Liana and Rebecca just blew me away on that first page when we see her. “Destroy.”
Now at this point, I must tell you, the differences in not just the colours, but even in the presentation of the people is just dissimilar enough you sense them as vastly unique. I love Liana’s unique drawing style that is both bold, clean, and elegant. What amazes me is how the colours and the drawing blend together seamlessly with the lettering, so the story just moves in harmony. So much beauty, such harmony. Have I mentioned the colours are some of my all-time favourite?
Each side preps for war, knowing they risk everything. Winona and Raul prepare hard and test each other, forcing each other to fight, not holding back. Raul gets hurt, Winona runs, and they both end up with their own errands to serve the god of death and their people.
Two of Morrigan’s forces go to The Inspiration, Brigid’s ship, to give one warning to the Light Knights. Words escalate, but in the end, one of Morrigan’s Fey witches falls to the knights. The final Fey fights to survive, knowing what it means to live and die in faithful service to Morrigan. Both sides are willing to die for their gods, both sides are willing to fight. Whether on Earth, on Titan, or in space, the fight has been never-ending as it now approaches Fey.
The fight is a stalemate at first, but then Vrixton channels his mother, Brigid and the tide turns as Morrigan leads Winona away from her people. The Fey witches are captured, some slaughtered by an overzealous member of the Light Knights. In the end, they’re brought to the center of the city, so they can face the end—face that Brigid wants them to serve her and turn from her sister. By doing so, Brigid becomes the all-powerful and one might think, Morrigan fades to nothing. When Winona runs off, she finds out what Morrigan needed from her- the belief, the trust, the death, the destruction and more. Winona becomes Morrigan’s avatar though there is something more.
Together, they make their way to the captured Fey and face off against Brigid and her forces. In the end, Brigid and Morrigan agree to fight- without interference and without their avatars. Brigid believes she will win because she hedges her bets by using the Inspiration to use its special firing power to fire upon the fairy forest as she strikes down Morrigan. Morrigan, in turn, reminds Winona on what to do. Both gods strike out at each other, but Morrigan knows truly who and what she is- death, fate, and a god of power. Brigid is bold, bright, and forever seeking to take any and all power, even that which is not hers.
As Winona and the other Fey run to the great Raven tower, they encounter those who once would’ve destroyed them, those who have now been abandoned by their beloved god, Brigid. They realise that they will be destroyed by the Inspiration. They ask for protection, though one does fight, and as he does, Raul steps up and gives the rest time to get inside the stone—which proves to be more than anyone has ever known. For in the end, the Fey witches had once traveled to this world with their beloved god and now they would travel once more.
As for Brigid, she declares herself sole god, the one and only. Yet, her son, her beloved Vrixton hears something, a voice…and it’s the voice of someone reminding him that there is always something other than the light, and her children are strong and they yet live.
The story and art go hand in hand in this book. You cannot speak one without the other. I could try, but I’d be doing a disservice to both creatives here. Even with the colouring and lettering- it’s a disservice to the entirety of this book to not explain just how important it is to showcase how incredible this entire book is- in fact, the series was from issue 1 to the end. I hated to see the series end. This was a marvel of prose, art, colour, and sounds. The story lives and so, therefore, do the gods. The storyline is not just that of two gods battling for supremacy, it’s about surviving as beliefs and lives shift in so many ways. What we believe today may not be what we believe thirty years from now.
This book is like a breath of fresh air and a blessing to all Morrigan is and was and could ever be. This isn’t to say Brigid isn’t to be praised- but it showcased how Brigid adapted and survived in ways Morrigan wasn’t able to. I think for mythologists, it’s what makes this story so powerful- how those who believe, those who know the tales, even those who don’t- can fully understand wanting to survive, wanting to be strong, and in some ways, wanting to succeed where others have fallen. What got to me is that at any time, Brigid could’ve said, “There’s room enough for us both, sister. We need both the light and the dark. Life and death. Let us have peace between us.” The fact she couldn’t, that the power to be the only god, is telling in its own way. The way the colours, the artwork was drawn, showed so much of that story if you just looked closely. It’s why I love this story. It’s a treasure to me, it holds a place in my heart.
So if you’ve not read this story- you need to put this review down and go get your copy before it goes out of stock everywhere. Then you need to get on Twitter and tell @afwassel that you want MORE stories from Joe Corallo and Liana Kangas. (I am such a pita. I swear he’s gonna ban me from Vault stuff just to make me stop!)
She Said Destroy Trade Paperback
Writer: Joe Corallo Colourist: Rebecca Nalty
Artist: Liana Kangas Letterer: Melanie Ujimori
Publisher: Vault Comics Editor: Adrian Wassel
Available: Everywhere comics are sold, Comixology.