Welcome to your new lockdown binge read!
Aleksy Dryagin returns from off-world wars to find that putting down his guns and picking up where he left off with his wife and young son is not an option. Instead, he’s marked for death, the pawn in a power struggle between the omnipotent Tri-Corp and subversive organization White Noise. But Dryagin is no one’s pawn. You pick a fight with Dryagin… It’s To The Death. Populated with colourful characters – such as evolved fish-man Killatoa, The Triumvirate, and Dryagin’s crack Scourge platoon of ‘Pacifiers’, To The Death is widescreen kinetic action all the way, building to a truly Earth-shattering conclusion.
Created by Transformers legends Simon Furman and Geoff Senior, before we tell you about the issues, let them explain how it came to be…
SIMON FURMAN: It came out of two ‘needs’. The first was to create something original and exciting that came wholly from us – without anyone telling us what we could or couldn’t do, or what they thought would or wouldn’t work. That meant going the creator-owned/self- published route. The second was to re-channel some of our early creative drive on series like Dragon’s Claws and Death’s Head (both Marvel UK) into something new and fit for purpose in today’s comic book market. Dragon’s Claws particularly came out of that anarchic, more sci-fi than spandex UK comics legacy, a very hard-edged and visceral but darkly humorous vein of storytelling that we Brits tend to excel in.
GEOFF SENIOR: Career-wise, I’d moved out of comics art and more into storyboarding for advertising, and was keen to flex those muscles again. I’ve never been that into standard superheroes, always preferring the grittier, darker style of those classic UK war/sci-fi comics or something like John Buscema’s Conan work. So when Simon suggested we channel that Dragon’s Claws vibe into something new, I was completely up for it.
To The Death #1: Another World, Another War
Earth, 2674: career soldier Aleksy Dryagin comes home to a hero’s welcome… and a death sentence. Thrust into a maelstrom of power plays, betrayal and entrenched last stands, Dryagin finds enemies at every turn, even within his own Pacifier squadron, and a malignant conspiracy that threatens the lives of his wife and son… and countless billions of others.
“Furman and Senior are really onto something here and both are smashing it!” – ComicBookNews
To The Death #2: Severance
Earth, 2674: diverted to the moon by the Triumvirate, Aleksy Dryagin and Scourge Squadron find themselves embroiled in an entrenched siege and under fire, their loyalties tested and divided. Unaware that his wife and son have been marked for death, Dryagin finds enemies and new threats at every turn. But the Triumvirate have reckoned without Dryagin’s uncanny knack for survival – and bucking even the most insurmountable odds.
“[To The Death] is off the chart!” – Bleeding Cool
To The Death #3: The Art Of White Noise
Earth, 2674: thrown into the middle of an entrenched lunar standoff between the Tri-Corp and desperate Helium miners with asteroid-smashing gun, Dryagin and Scourge Squadron take matters into their own hands – which effectively means pissing off the three most powerful ‘people’ on Earth. Caught between a rock and some seriously big Mechs, Dryagin finds that he real enemy… is within… and the heat’s well and truly ON!
“Wicked… Beautifully drawn… The story is really clever and engaging… you get a lot of book for your money. It’s a winner!” – Gobsmack Comics
To The Death #4: The Kill-Zone
Earth, 2674: Quite suddenly – and possibly fatally – Aleksy Dryagin discovers he’s no longer calling the shots when it comes to Scourge Squadron, and his hair-trigger, hot-blooded pyro-warfare expert Kraken has orders from on high not only to assume command, but also to make sure Dryagin dies a dusty death on the lunar surface. But others – most notably the subversive White Noise group – want Dryagin alive and kicking for their own reasons. But are they already too late?
“It could be the way forward for British comics.” – Paul Cornell (writer, Doctor Who)
To The Death #5: Asphodel
Earth, 2674: With all hands against him, can Dryagin possibly buck the odds and live to fight another day? As if his own pyro-warfare expert Kraken weren’t enough of an obstacle, waiting in the wings – all looking for a piece of him – are a White Noise Tac-team and the looming threat of alien ‘soldier of fortune’ Killatoa. Dryagin’s past is about to come back to haunt him – big-time – as Scourge Squadron’s first mission to Asphodel is revisited… and the terrifying fallout revealed!
“Thrilling!” – In the Orbit Of (podcast)
To The Death #6: Killatoa
Earth, 2674: Once again, Dryagin finds he’s a marked man, and where Kraken failed, the evolved aquatic ‘soldier of fortune’ (don’t call him assassin) Killatoa may well succeed! For a start, he’s very, very hard to kill, and once he sets his sights on his prey – akin to a guided missile. The kid gloves are off, as Dryagin strikes back – vowing to take the fight all the way to the very heart of the Tri-Corp empire. But with the looming threat of Asphodel overshadowing all – is he already too late?
“Behind a cover that could have been a page from Action Force lies 40+ pages of pure gorgeousness!” – Exciting Stuff
To The Death #7: Hope For The Best… Plan For The Worst
Earth, 2674: Finally back on Terra Firma – Scourge Squadron prepare to take the fight right to the Triumvirate’s doorstep. But first Dryagin wants answers – stubbornly refusing to believe his wife and son are dead, desperate to say his last goodbyes before he embarks on a mission he knows there’s no coming back from. Unfortunately, both the Tri-Corp and White Noise guard their secrets fiercely, and the collateral damage just keeps stacking up.
“A white hot new book! It’s hardboiled British sci-fi of the highest order.” – James Roberts (writer, Transformers)
To The Death #8: The End Of The World As We Know It
Earth, 2674: It begins… the all-out assault on the Hub Tri-Corp Cloudscraper. His wife and son may have been found – alive – but the number of lives now at stake is in the billions, the fate of planet Earth in the balance, and Dryagin has no choice but to forge on, into the very belly of the beast. From the air and deep underground, Dryagin and Scourge Squadron converge – with their enemies, who are legion, lying in wait.
“A hugely enjoyable slice of futuristic sci-fi!” – Nerdly
To The Death #9: The Leash
Earth, 2674: Finally… Dryagin confronts The Triumvirate – head on! But what can one all-too-mortal man do against beings that have, in effect, already transcended death? With the rest – or should that be remainder? – of Scourge Squadron in entrenched battle with the nigh-on un-killable Killatoa and White Noise under siege from Asphodel’s stone aliens, the chances of forestalling the Tri-Corp’s extinction agenda have gone from low… to no.
“A fantastic slice of all-action, high-energy sci-fi, with a satirical edge running through its battle-scarred heart.” – Pipedream Comics
To The Death #10: Tooth And Claw
Earth, 2674: it’s the quite possibly world-shattering end! We didn’t call this comic To The Death for nothing… as the bodycount goes stratospheric and the lives of the 12 billion inhabitants of Earth hang by the slenderest of threads. Who lives (maybe no one)? Who dies (possibly everyone)? No happy endings are guaranteed as the most visceral, searing and in-your-face action epic reaches its fiery finale. At no extra cost, we offer intensive counselling once you’ve put this comic down.
“Fecking Awesome!” – Nick Roche (writer, Transformers)