Review: Gunnerkrigg Court – Volume 1

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Gunnerkrigg Court –  Volume 1: Orientation

Writer/Artist: Tom Sidell
Archaia Studios Press
Street: 04.28

Its kind of funny to go back through the early events of this now-epic webcomic and see just how much it has changed and grown over the last decade. Volume 1 collects the first 14 chapters of the series, and even over the course of the book, Sidell’s art style and storytelling matures considerably. The series starts off small, focusing on Antimony Carver and Kat Donlan’s weird adventures as students at Gunnerkrigg Court. The school focuses on science and technology, but it’s quickly revealed that low magic and high tech abound in equal measure in Antimony’s world. Sidell’s effortless blurring of the line between fantasy and sci-fi lends Gunnerkrigg Court a whimsical vibe, even when its themes are dark, and an optimistic spirit of humanism keeps the comic from dwelling overlong in the shadows. These early chapters establish some of the founding myths and stories that underpin the entire series, and even longtime readers will discover hidden foreshadowings of events that are still unfolding online. If you’re in for a comic that’s equal parts Harry Potter and Terry Pratchett, pick this up and head to to stay up-to-date with this fascinating story. –Henry Glasheen