Rat Queens, Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe & Roc Upchurch | REVIEW

Rat Queens Vol.1Rat Queens, Volume 1: Sass & Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe & Roc Upchurch
Published by Image Comics on April 8th, 2014
Genres: Graphic Novel, Fantasy, Magic, Adult
Pages: 128
Format: Paperback


Who are the Rat Queens?

A pack of booze-guzzling, death-dealing battle maidens-for-hire, and they’re in the business of killing all god’s creatures for profit.

It’s also a darkly comedic sass-and-sorcery series starring Hannah the Rockabilly Elven Mage, Violet the Hipster Dwarven Fighter, Dee the Atheist Human Cleric and Betty the Hippy Smidgen Thief. This modern spin on an old school genre is a violent monster-killing epic that is like Buffy meets Tank Girl in a Lord of the Rings world on crack!

Collecting Rat Queens #1-5!

Rat-Queens-Vol-1-ReviewRat Queens, Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe and Roc Upchurch is a collection of the first six issues of the Rat Queens comic book. It follows Hannah, Violet, Dee and Betty, the Rat Queens on their boozy adventures of love, sex, drugs and killing monsters. A lot can happen in only five issues, so let’s see how theses ladies fared.

Rat-Queens-Vol-1-Plot-+-WritingThe Rat Queens are a mercenary band of kick-ass women who are based in a little medieval-ish town named Palisade. Along with a number of other mercenary bands that they constantly compete with, they’ve been hiring themselves out as monster killers. Unfortunately their wild ways have been getting under the skin of the entire town. So after a bar brawl that causes serious damage, they (and all the other mercenary bands) are tasked with a quest to make up for all their troublemaking.

Kurtis J. Wiebe’s writing was truly witty and fantastic to read as I was literally laughing at all the sarcastic dialogue between the characters, especially between the Rat Queens and it really gave this volume a comical edge to the intense battle sequences. I also loved the fact that Kurtis J. Wiebe made this series reminiscent to the “Dungeons and Dragons” series with the main characters using all kinds of sorcery and sword fighting to defeat their foes in battle, while also combing the sarcastic wit and female empowerment of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” into the story. Roc Upchurch also delivered with some great artwork. A story can only go so far in a graphic novel without fantastic artwork and that is what he provided.

Rat-Queens-Vol-1-CharactersBetty was my favorite, just because she likes to drink as much as I do. She’s a silly little lady who has an eye for detail She’s also incredibly feisty. Her heart is made of pure gold, and she loves to do mushrooms. Also, she’s as good with a bow and arrow as Legolas and Hawkeye put together. She also has the cutest sayings on the face of the planet.

Violet was an awesome redhead with a curvy body and a furious nature. She can also, apparently, grow a beard (which might match her twin brother, who is pretty attractive in pencil, if I do say so myself). She lives for fighting, and just might be the toughest of the Rat Queens in this volume. Plus, she gets in some sexy time with Orc Dave.

Hannah is a crass, bitchy woman who grows on you in about a second and a half. She has sass for days and isn’t afraid to start a conflict in whatever location she’s in. She causes a lot of trouble, but it’s made clear in these pages where her heart truly lies. She’s loyal to her ladies, while also picking the cutest man in town to set her eye on.

Dee is the one that I want more information on, and it seems like that will be available in the next volume. Her past with the squid cult is really interesting, and also her flashback to her parents who are still a part of said cult. She’s an insane introvert and can barely talk to anyone who isn’t involved in the Rat Queen’s quest to kick ass.

Let’s add in Sawyer who is way too attractive for his own good, and only wants the best for Palisade (also to get into Hannah’s pants). He’s a sweetheart and I can definitely see the allure.

Rat-Queens-Vol-1-SettingThe little town of Palisade is in ruins after each and every debacle the Rat Queens get themselves into. It added great atmosphere to the story and only added to the overall effect the plot was trying to give off. The people of the town want them gone, but they have never felt more at home in Palisade.

I can’t wait to see what other disasters they can create for the poor town folk to endure. If I lived there I can tell you one thing. I would embrace them and probably attend every crazy party they throw and squeeze my way into their small circle of friends.

Rat-Queens-Vol-1-In-ConclusionRat Queens, Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe & Roc Upchruch was an action packed roller coaster with tons of humor, touching moments, alcohol and drugs, and major badassery. I loved all the characters and the story was so fun. Not to mention I loved the artwork as well. I can’t wait for volume 2 of this epic graphic novel!

If you’ve read it, let me know what you thought. Was it as awesome as I think it was?

Until next time,

Sig New

Rat-Queens-vol-1-About-the-AuthorKurtis J. WiebeKurtis Wiebe is a Vancouver, Canada based author who’s been established in the world of comic writing since 2009. For his contribution to the critically acclaimed Green Wake, Kurtis was presented with the Outstanding Comic Book Writer Shuster Award.

Never satisfied with a specific style of writing, Kurtis has branched out to novels, videogames and screenplays. He spends his days at home, writing about the mad things that float around his brain, and occasionally escapes to various cities around North America to promote his projects.

Author 26Roc Upchurch is a guy who draws according to his twitter. That is all I could find about him.

Published by


Jesse Nicholas lives in Toronto, Canada. He is an aspiring writer and one day wishes to have a novel published. Along with writing, Jesse enjoys music, travel, trashy TV, and is an avid reader of anything in the Young Adult and Fantasy/Sci-Fi genres. He is currently posts reviews on the novels he reads on his blog, and spends hours upon hours coming up with ideas for a future stories.

5 thoughts on “Rat Queens, Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe & Roc Upchurch | REVIEW”

  1. I have attempted to read only one comic and that was Archey (*cringe*). I didn’t like it so I have never been interested in picking up another comic.

    However, Rat Queens sounds like a blast. I will definitely have to give it a try! I love female empowerment, and lots of sass!
    Thanks for sharing the review!

    Liked by 1 person

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