Preview: Bringing The Martian Chronicles To A Conclusion (Of Sorts) In ‘Scarlet Traces’ Vol.3 By Edginton And D’Israeli

by Richard Bruton

Released 15th March, Scarlet Traces Volume Three, by Ian Edginton and D’Israeli, sees one of the great sci-fi sagas of recent years reach an ending – or at least the end of the first phase…

Don’t get the wrong idea though, the final page of Scarlet Traces Volume Three ends on a cliffhanger, meaning we’ve not seen the end of the fabulous adventures quite yet. But this is definitely an ending of sorts, bringing the Martian/Human conflict to an end and wrapping up many of the storylines we’ve enjoyed since the first Scarlet Traces appeared in the early 2000s.

Ever since then, Ian Edginton and D’Israeli’s Scarlet Traces has explored the world of HG WellsWar of the Worlds in epic fashion. Over the course of the series, Edginton and D’Israeli have turned their initial murder mystery into a saga of epic sci-fi, political intrigue, and cutting social commentary. We’ve seen the Martian technology from the first repelled invasion integrated into all aspects of modern life, seen a new, Martian-tech driven British Empire launch a counter-offensive to Mars whilst dominating the globe, and then seen it all come crashing down in the devastating Martian bombardment in the 1940s, something Britain’s still recovering from. It’s this world-building that made Scarlet Traces work so well, seeing all the little touches of Martian-tech in throwaway little moments, alongside a thriller of an adventure chronicling the ongoing conflict between the Martians and humanity.

So, as the first storyline in this collection opens, Cold Front, we’re back down on Earth, watching the final invasion of the Martians begin…

From here, Home Front takes us deep into the resistance movement of Venusians who’ve spent too many years under the Martians and refuse to do it again, we see Humans and Venusians fighting together facing seemingly impossible odds.

And then comes Storm Front, where we find out just what Ahron Shakespeare has been up to and set off on a breakneck thriller building and building towards a completely unexpected conclusion, one that not only wraps up everything that’s gone on thus far but gives us the possibility of Edginton and D’Israeli taking us into new directions with future Scarlet Traces.

So no, not the end, not yet, but definitely an ending, and a bloody good one at that, with both Edginton and D’Israeli on top form. If you’ve been following Scarlet Traces, this is one you’ll be impatiently waiting for. And if you’ve never read any Scarlet Traces, trust us, you’re missing out on something wonderful.

Scarlet Traces Volume 3 – Written by Ian Edginton, art by D’Israeli, letters by Ellie De Ville and Simon Bowland

Published by 2000 AD/Rebellion on 15 March 2022

Contains the storylines Home Front ( originally serialised in 2000 AD Progs 2126-2129, 2131-2138) and 
Storm Front (Progs 2250-2255, 2257-2261)

Now, a little preview for you – the first episode of Home Front:


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