Female-Led Viking Comic 'Heathen' Set for Return With 'Tomb Raider' Artist (Exclusive)

Heathen_Art - Publicity - P 2019
Courtesy of Vault Comics
Ashley Woods, the artist behind comics such as 'Ladycastle' and 'Tomb Raider,' will handle artistic duties after the Viking saga returns in June.

Heathen, Vault Comics' female-centric Viking saga created and drawn by Natasha Alterici, is returning for a second arc, this time with a new artist.

Ashley Woods, the artist behind comics such as Ladycastle and Tomb Raider, will handle artistic duties when the series, which has been on a hiatus since January 2018, returns in June with issue seven.

Alterici is writing the new story arc, which will be six issues long. Woods takes over as artist with issue nine, letting Alterici, who was stricken with hand pain — one of the causes of the hiatus — to focus on writing and keeping the acclaimed title on a scheduled track.

Heathen centers on a Viking woman who comes out as queer in an age and culture of merciless patriarchy. Her ostracism leads her on a quest to right those cultural wrongs with Odin, the leader of the Viking gods.

The book has been praised for its handling of deep themes and its art stylings. It was selected as an American Library Association YALSA 2018 great graphic novel for teens and sold in 36 countries. When the book returns this year, it will be translated into Spanish and Italian. Vault will also reprint issues five and six.

The comic has also caught Hollywood’s eye, with Constantin Film and Prime Universe working on a feature adaptation with Kerry Williamson (Alex Cross) writing the script.

“Ashley is superbly talented, her characters are alive and expressive, her worlds vivid and wondrous,” Alterici said in a statement. "I am confident in her skills and her vision, and I am so pleased to have her as a part of Team Heathen.”

Check out a page of Alterici's new art, below.