Aug 1, 2015

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 158: Adventurers v.2 #6, November 1988

As we come to the end of Adventurers, at least from the perspective of my own collection, I'll admit that the characters that I was vastly unsure of when I began the series have grown on my in ways I did not expect. I see from the listings at the Grand Comics Database that the series actually continued for quite some time after the second volume, and I think I'll be keeping my eyes open for further issues. But I'll leave the intrepid heroes here for a while, stuck in the immanence of a holy war, stranded in a jungle full of Chaos beasts, but still hopeful. There is a wonderful moment in this issue where Shadolock, who I'm really beginning to see as the focal character of the series, expresses his gratitude for the friendship of a tracker who came along on the expedition into the jungle, hoping for "everyone to know friendship like this." We see moments in comics that are declarations of love, or of fidelity to an idea or institution, but it's rare to see declarations of friendship, words that verge on describing how important some friends can be to us. We use the word "love" when speaking of family or of significant others and acknowledge that it is a word that binds up within itself so many things that we find we cannot speak. "Love" is the closest we can come to describing the indescribable. And there are those who think that the word is used too often, that it should, because it means so much, be used sparingly. I am of the same opinion of the word "friend." To have a friend, a true friend, is arguably as important a relationship as having a lover. Friends are people that you fundamentally count upon, the family that we choose instead of that into which we are born. It is a word that is used very liberally, and I often wonder if its importance is diluted in its overuse. But here, in this issue of Adventurers, Shadolock utters his declaration of friendship with all the solemnity and celebration of the vows of a wedding. He acknowledges the deep importance of friendships, of the bonds we have with our friends that we don't often speak aloud.

For that, despite my qualms with the series, Adventurers secures itself a place in my heart. What will tomorrow bring? No idea, but I'll see you there.

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