Writer: Soo Lee
Art: Soo Lee
Publisher: Dynamite Comics
Release date: August 16th, 2023
Disney Villains: Maleficent #4 continues the story that we’ve seen thus far. Each story is essentially a self-contained tale, but also builds off of what came previously at the same time. In this issue, Maleficent faces knights who attempt to bring her to justice after what she did to the young Prince Reynaud. The knights soon find out that for all their battle strategies, Maleficent is a force to be reckoned with. While the story demonstrates Maleficent’s power well and establishes her as an intimidating threat, it seems to stick with the same tired themes we’ve seen thus far in this book: an opponent challenges her and she uses her magic on them to attack them. It would be more interesting if there were some other Sleeping Beauty characters involved in the story. It seems to be getting predictable and unfortunately somewhat boring.
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The art in Disney Villains: Maleficent #4 remains consistent with what we have seen previously. The interior panels of the Forbidden Mountain showcase the eerie abode of the Mistress of all evil. There are some great panels of the knights on horseback riding into the thorny and snowy forest, also showing the raven flying overhead. Lee does an excellent job depicting nature scenes. The scene in which Maleficent first appears to the knights surrounded by a puff of green smoke really shows how threatening she can be, as well as when she zaps them with green fire from her magical staff. The thorns at the end show why it is foolish to challenge Maleficent, and they are depicted in a very ominous way to remind readers of the danger that Maleficent presents to anyone who crosses her. Maleficent’s dialogue is also consistent with how the original voice actress, Eleanor Audley, or her more modern voice actress, Susanne Blakeslee would deliver the lines.
While Disney Villains: Maleficent #4 isn’t as interesting as it could be and is somewhat repetitive, it still does a good job presenting Maleficent as a character to be feared. It shows that she is not easily intimidated and even views people trying to threaten her as amusing jokes. She is in control of her magic power and wants everyone to know it. Hopefully the final issue next month will tie into the events of the movie somehow.