What’s up everyone! Welcome to Beyond The Panel. Coming at you today with talk about Die #13! After last month’s issue of Die, more than ever was getting home going to be easier said than done. One half wants to stay and fix their mistakes, while the other half wants to just get out of dodge. Can they all really get what they want?
Let’s start off with the situation which Ash has found herself in. This has been one of the more unique situations any of these characters have found themselves in because another character is now introduced who has been around longer than any of them, even Sol. What interaction came from this was a much different experience for Ash than the last. Mainly because this person had a lot to say about the way the game has been played. Now compared to the issues of the past, this was also probably the first time where I felt just a bit lost when it came to the explanation of things. Not because it didn’t make sense or anything, but because there was just so much to digest about the explanation of things from the perspective of this Wells. The stories which influence the way this world works, the way war is approached, brought to an end, and much more in-between. Aside from that, there was just as much which might require a second read through if you aren’t a history buff. Again, this isn’t me saying that this series of reveals from Wells was bad, but for some readers out there it may take more time for clarity to wash over.
The best takeaway from her interaction with Wells was knowing exactly what she needed to do next. If there was ever a problem which Ash and Izzy faced, it was knowing what they needed to do specifically to begin putting things back together. Thanks to Wells, they have a good idea of where to start, and hopefully that being endgame.
Now speaking of clarity, there was much more of it to take from the other half of the party’s encounter with the Fair. We knew that they were looking for the Fair for answers, yet somehow they walked away with much more than what they bargained to understand. I think this was a very important revelation for this half of the group to run into. For them this could be as straightforward as trying to go home and caring about nothing in-between. However, now they know that escaping is not going to save them from a game which has already been set into play, and threatening everything they hold dear. By the end of this issue, it seems that everyone walked away with a better idea as to what they needed to do next.
That said, there were some others things to take into account as well from their encounter with the Fair. Much of it heartbreaking knowing that this game really does go the distance to work against this party.
With Die #13, there was a stronger focus on the characters and interactions. Not a problem either, when this is definitely where the artist for this book does their best work. Let’s start by talking about the way Ash was portrayed in her scene with Wells. Normally you would be used to the Ash who stands tall, regal, commanding of control over the conversation. Yet here she was drawn in one of her most vulnerable states. Collected, withdrawn, and showing consideration for her words with every glance, reaction, and response. It was as if seeing someone body-swapped with her too, because Wells in turn was drawn to be the essence of what we are more used to seeing from Ash. What really put us in this moment, and others throughout this issue was also the excellent use of perspective to zero in on the important expressions from these characters. This issue is all about truths and discoveries, and all of these were the kind which shook you.
In the end, whether you got everything in one go, or two, Die #13 was monumental towards shaking up this story with a new sense of direction.