'The Old Guard' covers some familiar ground but there's nothing wrong with that. Greg Rucka introduces his latest thrilling comic series with a group of immortal mercenaries lead by a no-nonsense kick-ass woman (sound familiar?) and it's everything you love about Rucka.
Rucka's other unstoppable warrior in Lazarus, Forever, is still kicking ass in that future dystopian world while Andromache of Scythia or "Andy" for short is just getting started in a world that's less dour - our present (depending on who you ask, of course).
Andy and her other immortal military unit members - Nicky, Joe, Booker - make up the squad but she's clearly in charge. Her disenchanted attitude is explained in the opening. Living, dying, and living again has gotten old. She wonders if she'll finally find some peace. After a brief romantic interlude, she meets the team for their next assignment. And 'The Old Guard' is off and running.
This is a globe-trotting adventure that encompasses locales like Paris, Barcelona, Sudan, and others. Leandro Fernández’s layouts give each city enough space to fill the panels with detailed touches that represent their location. The pace of the story quickens with the help of Fernandez's fluid and varied panels that draw the eye to several places and when the action and violence start (and there's plenty of it) it's a complete bloodbath. This is where Daniela Miwa's muted colors help flesh out the scenes. Rucka's is no stranger to heavy firepower and casualties from his work on Lazarus but this is on a higher level.
'The Old Guard' is Rucka at his most primal and unabandoned. A tour de force of violence and mythmaking. If you like your action grimy with characters who have nothing to lose then this title is for you. It's beautifully illustrated chaos and worth every penny.