Dynamite! Comics: A Clash of Kings Volume 2 #5 - Reviewed

I don’t really get the appeal of comic adaptations of live action media. Comics are broadly serialized, whereas a movie already exits in a completed form ready for consumption. It doubly confounds me if the comic is adapting a television show based of a widely known, widely popular book series. Like say, Clash of Kings, the third book series in the Song of Ice and Fire series. And yet here we are, with A Clash of Kings#5.

The issue follows the novels style of individual chapters, this time centering around Tyrion and Jon. Tyrion’s story sees him  as he balances his secret affair with the scandalous Shae and growing tension on the War of the Five Kings, while Jon’s centers on him out ranging with Lord Commander Mormount hunting wildlings. 

The comic tells its story’s well enough, but it lacks the vivid description of Martin’s prose, or the rich cinematography and actor performances of the show(you know, back when it was still good.) These are essential components. The books are beloved for the layered characters and the show is(or rather, was) loved because it brought those characters to life with the performances. Tyrion was made iconic by Peter Dinklage’s performance. Without either of these elements you’re left with a pretty bare bones narrative lacking either writing with any amount of flair or depth or interesting visuals to catch the eye. 

Text from the novel is peppered in as narration but all this serves to do is crowd panels where the art should take center stage. In some cases the panels actually hinder reading, as they make it hard to follow the flow of the narrative. Characters are fairly plain looking, and unless you told me who they were I couldn’t identify them at first, second or third glance. 

Clash of Kings #5 is fine in a vacuum, but in a world where both the novel and the TV series exist I have a hard time recommending it. You would be better served simply reading the books and constructing the scenes in your mind.

This issue hits on July 22nd!

-Parker Enix-Ross