Kill the Minotaur

  • Writers: Chris Pasetto & Christian Cantamessa
  • Artist: Lukas Ketner
  • Colorist: Jean-Francois Beaulieu
  • Publisher: Image

 

Most of us are familiar with the myths of antiquity or at least have some idea of what they entail. Icarus, Hercules and the ancient gods of mount Olympos are all part of our shared heritage, be we Greek or not, but what if there is more to them than just what we are told. Kill the Minotaur tries to unravel Ariadne’s yarn for us.

One of the first collections of stories that I was ever invested in as a child, was Greek Mythology. My parents had a book of Greek myths and it came to shape my world early on. That was why I initially took an interest in Kill the Minotaur when I saw it on the stands a while back. The story, written by Chris Pasetto and Christian Cantamess, is the actual myth of the Minotaur. The humanoid being with the body of a man and head of a bull living in a labyrinth in the island kingdom of Crete. In the myth, Athens,  conquered by Crete, are forced to pay a tribure of eight young men and women to the monster. One year the young prince Theseus is chosen and is forced to travel to the enemy land to face the Minotaur. I will not spoil the actual tale here for anyone who has not come across it before, so I will leave it here.

So far issue one of Kill the Minotaur sets the story just as the myth describes it, but we are treated to a hint at something else. As the writers say in the afterword to it, there are so many questions to be answered. Myths is at most only one dimension to a story. Why is Snow White’s stepmother so obsessed with her apperance, what is Goldilocks deal or why does Bluebeard kill his young brides and keep them in a closet? These are things that any sane person listening to these tales would ask, but we don’t. Pasetto and Cantamessa do with the Minotaur. The tale has a rich tapestry of characters that hrdly interact in the original myth. What are king Minos motives? Why is it so important that his hideous son remains alive? What are Theseus motives for venturing into the labyrinth to face his fate? There are so many questions and so few answers.

When I first opened the comic I thought I was going to read a retelling of the myth, like Legends: The Enchanted by Nick Percival, where he places them in a post-apocalyptic future or Kill Shakespeare that completely turns that world on its ear. Instead I got three dimensions to a story that had but one. The artwork and coloring is great. It has that Europeand feel to it. Not hyper realistic and not too cartoony either, a healthy mix between Kirby and Uderzo. If you thought that the classic myths needed more, without the cure Disney influence, than this is for you.

C.M. Marry Hultman

 

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