The Thirty Years War – Knife, and Cross – Historica Vol. 74 | Review


Published on Dec 07, 2018


The quality is the fundamental characteristic of the necklace Turn-of-Mondadori Comics and his loyal readers now know well. This volume is no exception as it presents a beautiful work of Stefano Casini, many known for many episodes of Nathan Never and also for Hasta La Victoria!, presented in this same series.

This time Casini chooses to set a story in the dramatic context of Thirty Years – The Blade and The Cross. This is a complex operation, since the period in question is not easy to describe and to represent, because of the many events that have characterised. The author therefore focuses only on certain locations and specific geographic contexts, and narrative. The conflict was, in fact, caused by contrasts of religious nature, but also by famine and by reasons related to political interests and power.

Casini introduces, then, an austrian prince, Von Kreuz, ruler of the principality of Kazerfurth; the duke of Velletri, involved in the intrigues and machinations of various types; an inquisitor, Villarojas, compulsion perverse and deviant, and a variety of other characters, all born of his imagination. There are, however, personality really existed, the likes of Richelieu, pope Urban VIII, of the commander-Mansfeld, and so on.

In practice, it remains faithful to the style of the historical novel. The plot is complex and rather difficult to summarize. Casini, in fact, it places the characters on several fronts: the bleak austrian regions tormented by the winter, the Spanish regions and major cities such as Paris, with his court, and Rome, dominated by the papacy. Consequently, there are different plots, often intertwined, that make up a fascinating tapestry of the narrative.

Casini manages to balance the historical accuracy and the imagination, narrating events really happened and many of his own invention. Fun, also, to propose that many of the elements of fiction, starting from the figures of persons belonging to noble families, considered to be the death, and instead lives, or from the adventurers who prove to be skilled warriors and offer him the opportunity to present typical situations of the stories of cloak-and-dagger to the Dumas.

The texts and the dialogues are cared for and often the protagonists are granted a profound reflections on the war and on the power. In this way, Casini, makes us understand the difference between the reasons of faith and politics, do not always coincide, and shows also the lack of scruples and hypocrisy of the powerful, and compelled often to act in a controversial manner for issues that are sometimes older than they are.

Thirty Years – The Blade and The Cross is a work valuable also for the indisputable quality of the drawings. Casini has a style that is a twisted, harsh, aggressive, and extremely expressive, perfect for the representation of the passions wild that animate the characters and the violent world in which they live. The pages focus on the fighting have a dynamism and impeccable, from this point of view, Which is confirmed as a master of storytelling.

Pages are more static are enhanced by play of light and shadow of great expressive value. They are also to be commended colors of the same casinos that have the merit to make further suggestive in his pencils. In principle, opt for shades of dark and dark, in line with the grimness of the plot; at the same time, however, are hot and make you think of certain results of expression of the art of Goya.

The plates ambientante in Andalusia, however, have more vivid colors and intense, that are appropriate for the different geographical context. In short, well on this occasion, Mondadori Comics offers us a comic of high level text and graphics, a must for all admirers of adventures with historical background. For you to try.

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