These Savage Shores #3
These Savage Shores #3 by Ram V, Sumit Kumar, Vittorio Astone, & Aditya Bidikar
The Khan is dead. War is right around the corner. But something doesn't seem right. Ram V continues to unweave his tale masterfully, giving us more about who the characters are. Sumit Kumar and Vittorio Astone do a phenomenal job with using the art to keep us on our toes. All this is topped off with lettering by Aditya Bidikar, who brings perfectly placed and lined letters.
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A prince has lost his father, a kingdom has lost a leader, and a country is vulnerable to invasion. THESE SAVAGE SHORES #3 opens with the untimely death of the Khan. Ram V, Sumit Kumar, Vittorio Astone, and Aditya Bidikar continue the story of Kori, Bishan, and Prince Vikram as they try to protect their countrymen. If you’re not caught up on this series, there’s still time.

Needless to say, every issue is more engaging and beautiful than the last. Ram V weaves a story that is unmatchable and unique. Complemented with art by Sumit Kumar and colorist Vittorio Astone, and perfectly placed lettering by Aditya Bidikar, you’re truly missing out if you haven’t picked up THESE SAVAGE SHORES.

These Savage Shores #3
Image Courtesy of Vault Comics

They Fight for Profit, and That Kind of Hunger is Unending

The story opens with Prince Vikram reading a letter from the Sultan of Mysore. It details the burning of the palace of Vikrampur and his father’s death. The Sultan offers condolences but, at the same time, tells Prince Vikram that his father had already given the Sultan his allegiance. The Sultan requests to use the prince’s forces against the East India Company, which the prince initially denies him.

However, the Sultan moves his plea to Bishan, whom he unmasks as being a Raakshas and being the real King of Vikrampur. The Sultan asks how many princes Bishan has seen die in his lifetime, which softens Bishan. On behalf of the prince, Bishan agrees to help the Sultan, but with a limited army. But not all is as it seems.

In England, the Portmaster of the East India Company has been kidnapped. It seems there is a man who is looking for whoever is responsible for Alain Pierrefont’s death. And maybe Bishan will have met his match.

THESE SAVAGE SHORES #3: A Place of Savage Motives

We get to learn so much about each character in this issue. It was an absolute delight to see who Bishan, Kori, and Prince Vikram were outside of their royal positions. The creative team is absolutely amazing at showing us who each character is underneath it all.

One of the key moments to me was when Bishan was headed off to fight the Sultan’s war. Prince Vikram comes to Bishan’s side and orders Bishan to come home when he’s done. The Prince’s eyes are large, doughy, and stare out of the panel out of desperation and love for Bishan. When reading this, it’s easy to forget how young Prince Vikram really is because he has so much on his plate and he handles everything to the best of his ability. Ram V, Kumar, and Astone do an amazing job at subtly reminding us that this child lost his father, gained a lot of responsibility, and may lose the last person he considers family. It’s heart-wrenching but perfectly depicted.

We also get a moment where Bishan and Kori reflect on one another. Kori refuses to say goodbye to Bishan because she hates his mask. She knows this indicates not only his leaving, but his possible dying. By contrast, Bishan remembers when Kori was young. This gives us a clear idea of how old Bishan just may be, but also of how deep his emotions run for Kori. It’s a sad yet happy moment that creates a whole picture on who these characters are.

These Savage Shores #3
Image Courtesy of Vault Comics

A Rare Thing in This Age of Wolves

Honestly, I have a hard time finding any flaws with Sumit Kumar and Vittorio Astone’s art. The pair work together like a dream team, capturing love, loss, sadness, and hate all at once. Every page made my heart feel so full, yet feel so lost all at once.

One of the best aspects of this comic has been the panel layouts. The highlight in THESE SAVAGE SHORES #3 is when Bishan is writing a letter to Kori. We see the tree the pair love to sit under split into two, with three panels laid out where the trunk of the tree would be. On one side, we have Kori and Bishan embracing one another and enjoying life. On the other, Kori stands alone reading Bishan’s letter. This depiction of their relationship is phenomenal. We get to see both sides of their relationship and how war affects them both. The color choice per side is absolutely beautiful as well.

Also, we need to give mad props to Aditya Bidikar, whose lettering is always outstanding. In this issue, we get something that is rarely seen: an Ancient Arabic script. Although I don’t want to assume what language it is, its lettering does resembles the Syriac alphabet. I’m, by far, no language expert, so anything I say should be taken with a grain of salt. But the lettering is absolutely beautiful. Arabic is already a beautiful language; to see some origins is amazing.

Final Thoughts: THESE SAVAGE SHORES #3

THESE SAVAGE SHORES is one of my favorite series to date. There are so many layers to the story and the imagery is absolutely beautiful. I have troubles finding issue with anything this story does. Ram V, Sumit Kumar, Vittorio Astone, and Aditya Bidikar have an amazing piece of literature on their hands. I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Be sure to keep an eye open for THESE SAVAGE SHORES #3! The release date is set for February 6th!

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