Warning: Spoilers ahead for Savage Dragon #225, in stores today!
With 100 pages, dozens of contributors, and a big "25th anniversary" tag on the cover, Savage Dragon #225 was always going to be one of the series' biggest issues -- but a pair of major deaths have likely forever changed the face of the long-running Image Comics series.
In "The Merging of Multiple Earths," Mister Glum has destroyed the multiverse in order to try and win the affections of Angel Murphy, an alternate version of whom was Glum's one true love before she was killed while Angel, along with Malcolm Dragon and their ally Rex Dexter, attempted to take Glum into custody.
The destruction of the multiverse comes as a shock to Darklord, who has been cultivating it for years, attempting to engineer a perfect universe. Once all the players are on the stage, it becomes Dragon, along with his kids Malcolm and Angel as well as the reconstituted Freak Force, against Darklord and Glum.
That's when things get ugly: Both Darklord, who first appeared in 1997's Savage Dragon #42, and Dragon himself, are killed in the battle.
Darklord is insanely powerful, and Dragon -- who was stripped of his powers during a sting in prison recently -- realizes in the issue that the only way to defeat him is to have all hands on deck. He "doses" himself with his son's blood in order to get his old powers back -- but there's a risk to that.
Around Savage Dragon #150, when Dragon previously appeared to die, supervillains started to crop up using Dragon's blood to enhance their own powers. It would work -- briefly -- and then their bodies would be rejected by the Dragon blood and they would explode.
Recently, the same thing happened to Barry Dragon, a minor supervillain who was himself the son of a Dragon from an alternate Earth. This seemingly confirmed that even those in Dragon's own bloodline could not withstand the effects of a Dragon blood transfusion (except in the case of one's own blood).
That was confirmed in today's issue, as Dragon defeated Darklord and prepared to go get a "cure" for the blood coursing through his veins, only to suddenly explode, shocking and horrifying his family and girlfriend, who were all present.
While Jennifer Murphy, Dragon's recently-returned ex-fiancee, vowed to bring Dragon back, it seems unlikely: way back in the early years of the comic, Dragon had a much-publicized "talk with God," in which the deity told Dragon that each person decides their own afterlife. Dragon decided that he wanted to spend eternity with "a bevy of leggy supermodels," and God told him that he could do that if he so chose.
After his death in today's issue, Dragon appears before a giant door in the clouds, and opens it to see a large bedroom full of numerous beautiful and scantily-clad women.
Dragon has died before -- but if he is to come back this time, he will have to be literally recovered from Heaven. That is the kind of search and rescue mission that feels like an event series unto itself, and which may not make whoever undertakes it Dragon's favorite person.
You can get a copy of Savage Dragon #225 at most comic book retailers today. If you can't, or prefer digital, you can pre-order it here.
In “The Merging of Multiple Earths,” Savage Dragon boasts a giant-sized 25th anniversary special that fans won’t want to miss out on. The Dragon is restored to his former glory as he bulks up to take on Darklord in a final battle! Mr. Glum’s devious plot to merge the multiverse comes to its cataclysmic conclusion! Savage Dragon and Malcolm Dragon join forces to save Angel Murphy and the very Earth itself!
Savage Dragon #225 will be available on Wednesday, July 26th. The final order cut-off from comics retailers will be Monday, July 3rd.
SAVAGE DRAGON #225 Cover A by Larsen, Diamond Code APR170688
SAVAGE DRAGON #225 Cover B by Frank Fosco, Diamond Code APR170689
SAVAGE DRAGON #225 Cover C by Larsen, Diamond Code APR170690
SAVAGE DRAGON #225 Cover C (XXX, $11.99) by Rafael Krás, Diamond Code MAY178162
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