War Torn continues the story begun in the previous volume, with Glory and her friends leaving to find Glory's little sister to aid in their fight against Glory's father. Before we crack on with the plot, I need to fill you in on the "Extreme" Universe. I wrote about the set-up at Image comics under my review of the Dave Sim penned issue of Spawn. To briefly recap, each of the founders had their own studio which came under the overall Image banner. Rob Leifeld's studio was called "Extreme" (oh dear, and when he left Image and formed a new studio he called it "Awesome". How old was he again?). Each studio had their characters as part of a shared universe, so for example events in Youngblood would be referred to in Supreme and so on, with frequent guest appearences and crossovers. Less frequently their might be a reference to an event taking place in the Extremeverse in a comic under the Wildstorm banner. But generally most characters kept to their own universes and in this volume of Glory we'll be meeting pretty much every character from the Extremeverse, including Supreme, Youngblood and Bloodstrike as well as assorted other characters from those comics. Rob Liefeld rarely does much in the way of art stuff now, but he did draw a variant cover for the first issue of Glory (the fantastic one that had her standing on a pile of defeated monsters). Sadly it's just rather dull and generic, and not as mockable the picture of her and Avengelyne I put in my review of book 1. Certainly wouldn't entice me to buy the comic at any rate.
|Why Liefeld!Glory I find your blandness.. ennervating|
The book begins with a flashback of Glory leaving Thule - so her Mum and Dad decide to have another half Demon/Amazon child to act as a peace symbol between their people and Nanaja is born. Back in the present Glory, Gloria, Riley and Henry are packing up to leave and go find Nanaja. Another flashback shows Glory visiting Nanaja as a young child and Glory says she'll always be there for her even when she is away. The flashback jumps forward and now Nanaja is a hot-headed teenager and angry at the responsibilities being laid upon her. A demon tells her she is Glory's "bloodshadow".
This makes Nanaja angrier and wanting to attack and crush humanity to spite Glory.
Glory and her gang fly to another French town called Buc (Gloria, Riley and Henry on the back of Belesava). There they meet another old friend of Glory's called Jim. They make plans to head into Paris where Nanaja is to be found. While the final flashback to the past shows Nanaja leaving for Earth via a teleportation portal.
In the present, Jim and Glory chat as they drive to Paris. Jim is concerned that Glory will get Riley killed and Glory can't assure him otherwise. They arrive at the house and Glory tells Gloria that her and Jim will be sharing a bed. The action then cuts to them both naked and post-coitally sharing a bottle of wine.
Jim: "We have had some times haven't we? The places we've been, the things we've seen. The lovers we've shared. Some things never change do they?"
|Nanaja and her bedtime companions|
Nanaja: Come on big sister. Find me. Challenge me. Bring whatever you got. Try to take me down. After all, it's long past time for some ultra-violence."
The second issue starts with a styalised flashback detailing how Glory and Ernest Hemmingway teamed up to take down a bad guy. Back in the present, Riley is impressed.
Riley: "Oh my God! Did they date?"
Jim: "No, no. She was with another at the time. For a long time. I never knew of a more committed couple."
Gloria: "Really? I didn't know that Glory was with anyone back then."
Riley: " I didn't know Glory was with anyone ever! Dish!"
Jim: "Everyone has their secrets. I suppose this is one of Glory's"
(We will find out who this mystery person is in the last issue, never fear)
The action then moves to Riley and Gloria in a strip club, running up a large bill. They start a verbal fight with the bouncer over it and Nanaja comes out to see what the fuss is about. And Glory bursts through the wall and punches her. They have a spectacular fight, both getting more demonic as they go, until finally the knock each other out.
|Just your normal sibling rivalry|
Nanaja: "****, if I knew this was about Dad we could have skipped the usual fight. You should have told me. I'm always down to **** up that *******."
Glory: "That's it?"
Nanaja: "Count me in."
Back with Glory and Nanaja's parents they worry about their daughters teaming up, that they don't have Riley and have no contingency plans and finally what will Glory and Nanaja do when they find out they have another sister?
Silverfall: "Gloriana. Nanaja. I figured that explosion was you. However I must apologise. I don't believe I have enough eggs for everyone. Would you settle for some waffles?"
Nanaja: "**** yeah. I'll have some waffles."
Glory: "You have to be kidding me"
Silverfall: "I assure you I am quite serious. We have an abundance of waffle mix."
During the war between the Amazons and Demons, just after Glory attacked her father for supposedly killing her mother, a huge monster appeared with a mass horde of followers. Glory attacked it headlong and was blasted out of the sky. Somehow she managed to escape back to Earth but with no memory of the beast in question.
|The Knight Of Thule|
Later Glory goes to speak with her mother who's jaw has been reattached. Glory is pissed at her.
Glory: "I killed so many people for you. I was ready to kill so many more. Now I find out it's all based on a lie."
|Soz about the jaw Mum|
Riley speaks with her best friend John and can't bring herself to say farewell. On the beach nearby Henry gives one of his precious cameras to a little girl playing there. Gloria is approached by a faceless man who gives her a horn called the "summoner" which is specficially designed to kill Glory. Nanaja bonds with her baby sister. Demeter and Silverfall make love. Finally Glory is back outside drinking wine by the bottle. When Gloria criticises her for wasting her last hour like this Glory responds:
Glory: "I didn't just sit around and drink. I made a few calls."
Gloria: "Oh really? To who?"
And out of a rift in the sky comes pretty much every superpowered character from the shared Extreme/Awesome Universe, with the notable exception of Prophet.
|The cavalry arrives|
Glory: "I should be clear. Today we fight for existence. We fight for civilisations we'll never know. We fight for the stars snuffed out in previous battles' wake. Our enemies purpose full purpose is unknown save apocalypse. This gives us but one objective. Today we slaughter a God!"
Silverfall tells her the Knight has emerged from a rift in Tokyo and the use a rift of their own to travel there quickly, finding a scene of devastation. It's minions are conquered Thulians, the Knight generates parasites that attach themseleves to those it conquers and forces them to fight for it. Before Glory goes to take it on Riley says goodbye to her in case they don't make it.
|Riley and Glory about to go into battle|
Supreme breaks Glory's arm to make her yield control to him, but she rips his arm off in return, just as Riley dreamt about in Book 1. Glory then mutates into a monsterious, bestial, one-eyed being, and attacks the Knight, ripping it apart. Riley realises this is all happening as her dreams predicted and she says the following over images of Glory raging out of control:
And Glory rips her in half.
The final issue starts with a flashabck to 1913 with Glory meeting a girl called Emilie who turns out to be the secret lover of Glory who was her constant companion during the early and mid twentieth century. Back in the present we see a miserable and literally diminished Glory, minus an arm and with a shaved head. Her father says he has arranged it with the freed Knights of Thule that she can make one trip to the afterlife, but this is a one time thing and when she dies for real, she'll be confined to the black void instead. Glory doesn't care - "When do I leave?"
|This heaven looks pretty cool|
Riley: "Your actions - all our actions - have consequences. In this case they're permanent. We're dead. Like dead, dead... There is nothing to fix anymore. There's no reset button for anybody. Even you."
Riley comforts Glory as she cries in her lap and says one day she'll find out that being dead is wonderful. Glory tells her that after the buried her, Gloria left and she doesn't know where she is. Nanaja and Glory are getting along, and staying with their parents. The new baby has been named "Riley" much to Riley's delight. Then Jim says that "she" is here. Glory isn't sure if she should see her. Glory tells them that Emilie killed herself after she couldn't bear growing any older while Glory stayed the same. And that was one of the reasons Glory became more unhinged, without Emilie to keep her in line.
Glory: "Who know's what she'll think of me now. What she'll think when she sees.."
|Glory and Emile kiss as Henry, Riley, Jim, Fabrice and Beleszava look on|
After their reunion, Glory realises she has to leave and she doesn't tell them she won't be able to return to the afterlife. The story ends with Glory looking more like her old self, with a new arm, and the whole family, Glory, Nanaja, baby Riley and their parents pile into a flying, rocket powered van to adventures new. How sweet.
It's not quite the end. Tacked on are two final pages where two faceless men discuss the destruction of the Summoner and how the battle of Tokyo would have been an ideal debut for what they are planning. They have a long time to plan and one day someone will "pull the trigger" for the "coming of Prophet". And we see lots of cryogenic storage tubes as this is said. These pages have literally nothing to do with Glory's storyline, but do have a lot to do with the series that was running concurrently called Prophet, and which is still running to this day. I've only read the first three trades of Prophet and how events in them link back to these two pages hasn't been covered yet in them.
As for Glory, it seems these twelve issues are all there has been of this new look reboot. I've checked out my local comic shop and haven't found any more issues on the shelves, and searching online hasn't yielded any useful information. It's a great pity because Glory is a fantastic character and it was refreshing to have an unconventional looking main character in a storyline that prioritised female relationships in a way few comic books ever do even now in space year 2014. I have to wonder what Rob Liefeld thought of the decision to make Glory bisexual. When the X-man he created called Shatterstar was made bisexual and given a male lover he got pissed and very outspokenly said he'd undo it if he ever got the chance (not that him writing for one of Marvel's biggest cash cow franchises is ever going to happen in this day and age). But female homosexuality is generally less contentious to homophobes, so he probably didn't care.
|Glory and Emilie while still alive.|