Comic: Godzilla Rage Across Time #3 Title
 Godzilla Rage Across Time #3
 Ryan Ferrier
Pencils: Hugo Petrus Inks: Hugo Petrus
Language: English Release: 2016
Publisher: IDW Publishing Pages: 32
Colors: Jay Fotos Cover: Bob Eggleton
Monster Appearances: Aliens, SDF, & Misc Appearances:
Mothra, Megaguirus, Meganulon -
Anthony Romero

Issue three of Godzilla Rage Across Time passes the writing torch to Ryan Ferrier, best known for his work on comic titles like Robocop and The Fuse. He is joined by Hugo Petrus on art duties, best known for his Marvel Illustrated work, as the pair move the story to 14th century England. This chapter in the series is the darkest yet, placed as the Black Death is gripping Europe. It also happens to be the best issue in the Godzilla Rage Across Time run so far, bolstered by solid art and a unique story for the franchise.

As for that unique story, the comic begins in 1348 England as the bubonic plague is claiming mounting causalities. As a result, King Edward the 3rd calls for the knight Gilder. The King believes that the plague is the result of a dragon, belittling Gilder's claim that rats are responsible. Banking on this, King Edward sends the knights to kill the beast and seek out a temple to search for a "divine response". Not long on their quest, the warriors are attacked by a Meganulon, belonging to the dragon the King spoke of: Megaguirus...

The story is dark, as a plot involving the Black Death should be, yet well structured for a one issue story. There is a lot of dialogue, a lot of meat to pick at to help flesh out the issue. One of the best elements of the comic, though, is taking the kaiju and sticking them in an alien situation while adapting them to it. The previous issue, Godzilla Rage Across Time #2, examined this with Godzilla in Ancient Greece. However, Godzilla felt out of place... in a way that worked for the narrative. This issue, however, makes the creatures fit into the story, with Megaguirus working well for the mysterious dragon role. Mothra sticks out much more, but in an exotic sense that works for her Devine character.

Ultimately, though, I think I have to put a lot of praise on this being a join effort. Hugo Petrus' art is simply stunning. The level of detail, from rats to the cast of characters, is fantastic. This combined with the heavy dialogue leads to a slow, enjoyable read with a lot to look at in each panel. While the kaiju vs kaiju action is relatively minor, the art does make it pop, giving each of the monsters an impressive blow to land amongst their fight. The story does give action in other places as well. This includes a great stint from the Meganulon, who are, pleasantly, modeled after the ones from Rodan (1956). It's a shock when they appear, and they do well to mark a change in the story for the more fantastic.

In terms of the covers, this issue has three excellent choices to choose from. The first is done by Bob Eggleton and depicts Mothra and Megaguirus squaring off. The art here is stellar, although it does use the Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003) version of Mothra instead of the Heisei version in the comic. The castle is also a bit too subtle in the background, resulting in this being a great cover of the two monsters facing off, but one that doesn't feel as tied to the subject matter as it could. Next up is the subscription version, done by interior artist Hugo Petrus, which shows the knights of the 14th century while Mothra and Megaguirus fight in the background. Megaguirus is a bit nondescript, appearing a little too dragon-like, but the art on the knights is solid and does convey the time element of the story. The final cover is by Cory Smith and shows Godzilla looming over a castle. It's a great image, with a lot of rich detail placed into it, while staying true to the time element... although Godzilla does not appear in the issue. When choosing between the three, all of them are solid choices, although I would give the slight edge to the subscription version for being a bit unique and the most relevant to the comic.

Overall, I was impressed by this issue. I'm enjoying the unique slant that this mini-series offers, while this mash up of two kaiju amongst a strong narrative set in 14th century England just works. Hopefully the lack of Godzilla doesn't turn readers away, as I do feel this is one of the stronger entries from IDW in awhile. It will likely leave some not so thrilled with the concept due to the light monster vs monster action. However, the kaiju are far from absent in the story and the comic does a good job of delivering a satisfying, single issue experience... a lost art in a world that tends to create comics with a trade paperback in mind.

Variant Covers
Comic: Godzilla Rage Across Time #2 Comic: Godzilla Rage Across Time #2