The Recap Page: What You Need to Know Heading into ‘Rat Queens #15’
With so many great comics series to read, it can be difficult keeping track of everything that happened from issue to issue. The Recap Page is a new feature to help readers get caught up ahead of milestone issues and jumping-on points.
This week sees the publication of Rat Queens #15, by Kurtis J. Wiebe and Tess Fowler, published by Image Comics, in which a sort of homecoming has revealed some hidden truths, and created rifts in the group that may be beyond repair. If you've ever been curious aboutt Rat Queens, this issue promises to be a standout.
The Story So Far: Rat Queens takes place on Planet D&D, the consensus adventurer fantasy universe of a million thrown d20s and late nights with friends pretending to kick dragon butt.
The characters have slowly been revealed to be more than their surface-level archetypes as the series progressed. Over the past few issues, the team’s resident practitioner of magic, Hannah, has gone looking for her father. In so doing, the adventurers have been pulled into the middle of wizardly intrigues at the same college that Hannah learned sorcery at --- which is a bit more drug- and sex-crazed than the average outing at Hogwarts, unless you’re reading the good fanfics.
Along the way, we discover that Hannah has not been 100% honest with her sisters-in-arms. Her magical powers involve demons, plural, several of which nearly killed the troupe.
What Happened Last Time? Betty and Violet got into a fight with a dragon, until they realized that most dragons find mortals too cute to light on fire, and are less interested in the wholesale slaughter of villages and more interested in their stash of candy. Violet picked up a magical sword that seeped black energy and gave her a vision, which is adventurer-ese for “well, frick.”
Hannah pierced the veil between life and death, and learned that her father was politically apathetic by choice --- not interested in holding power, but still interested in who holds it. The current council ruling the magical university is cracking down just as hard as the previous council that Hannah’s father sought to replace, and Hannah is in for the fight of her life if she wants to save him.
Dee, the priestess of an unfathomable god-squid, reunited with her brother, and they discussed Dee’s discovery that the family cult’s god is real and needs to be destroyed. Their entire faith is not meant to be empowerment, but a prison. Dee also learned from her brother that Hannah hasn’t been on the up-and-up with the group, and the issue ends with her being called to task by Dee.
What’s Next? Everything from the cover to the solicitation text points to a rift between the protagonists, which is most likely due to Hannah, but could involve the mystic sword Violet owns, Betty’s troubled past, or any one of a half-dozen factors.
What makes Rat Queens fun to read is that the characters don’t just act like player characters at the table, but like the players of those characters, who have formed their own friendships. Seeing this friendship threatened goes to the very core of the book, and makes this feel like the most dangerous challenge the group has ever faced.
Rat Queens #15 goes on sale Wednesday 16 March.