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Head Lopper, Vol. 1: The Island or A Plague of Beasts

(Head Lopper #1-4)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  1,772 ratings  ·  227 reviews
The Head Lopper, Norgal, and the nagging severed head of Agatha Blue Witch arrive on the Isle of Barra to find it overrun with beasts; minions of the Sorcerer of the Black Bog. When Queen Abigail hires Norgal and Agatha to slay the Sorcerer, our heroes trek across the island relieving the horrors of their heads - and playing right into the hands of a master manipulator.

Paperback, 280 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Image Comics
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Andrew Apocalyptigirl is a great title by Andrew MacLean

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Average rating 4.07  · 
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 ·  1,772 ratings  ·  227 reviews

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Sep 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this. Take Mike Mignola, some David Rubin, and a little Jeff Smith put them in a blender, hit puree and you have Head Lopper. Head Lopper is the story of Norgal, a guy who goes around lopping the heads off giant monsters. With him is Agatha Blue Witch, or at least her head. Norgal chopped her head off but she is too stubborn to die. She provides the comic relief in the book as she perplexes the bejesus out of Norgal, but is too dangerous to leave behind. The star here is the act ...more
Sam Quixote
The Isle of Barra is menaced with hideous monsters and a dark sorcerer who wants to kill the Queen – enter the white-haired barbarian Norgal the Head Lopper and his severed talking head, Agatha Blue Witch, who’s hired to save the kingdom! Hello, Generic Fantasy Plot? We need to recycle you for this book!

Andrew MacLean’s swords and sorcery comic Head Lopper is a bit crap. MacLean’s art is interesting – think a cross between Mike Mignola and Michael Avon Oeming’s styles – but like a lot of artist
Jun 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
A fun little book, that one. Head Lopper is about a huge guy with a beard, who swings his sword and cuts off his enemies' heads. Hence the title. But you should call him Norgal. He travels with Agatha, the severed head of a witch, and they fight evil and stuff.
Head Lopper isn't overly deep, to be sure, but it's fun. there are some great jokes and some priceless dialogue (mostly between Agatha and any other character), and the artwork is beautiful. The action is the heart of the book, though, an
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sooooo much fun! I loved this and didn't want to put it down.

I would compare this mostly to Samurai Jack, but executed better. It also has influences of Mignola's work which I adore.

It's about Norgal the executioner son of the Minotaur also known as HEAD LOPPER! "Norgal will be fine!"

It has such a great simple but intelligent tone and fantastic artwork. For the first volume there are nearly 300 pages and I pray they make this an ongoing series.

Apr 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
There was a lot to like in this book. The art reminds me of Mike Mignola's style. Given the fantastic setting and some of the weird stuff that happens, that is really fitting. The story ventures into some very ridiculous moments. But that just made it more fun for me to read. I particularly enjoyed the moments with the head of the blue witch egging Norgal on and generally making his life hell.

I wasn't completely sold on the bad guy though. The servant to the royal family that tries to seize cont
Jan 02, 2017 rated it liked it
It's pretty and bright with an art style that falls somewhere between Adventure Time and Hellboy, but there wasn't much else to sink your teeth into. Granted, I don't think it wanted to be more than head chopping action, but it felt long and fairly one-note with barely any character or plot to invest in, and I generally need more than this offers. Apocalyptigirl did stylish adventure better and with much more heart, and I hate Fairyland does wanton violence with a lot more goofy fun, but I imagi ...more
David Turko
May 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a lot of fun. Imagine Mike Mignola's art style in a Conan or Samurai Jack story. The art is the main show in this book and it really shows. A minor flaw is that the story is a bit generic. But the characters and dialogue are wonderful and definitely worth reading. ...more
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
That was fun. Yes, many heads were lopped. No false advertising.
Oct 11, 2019 rated it liked it
It has a very cool visual style ( very mignolaesque) especially the fun fight scenes however the story telling is a little too simple for my liking
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was ok
Fans of the fantasy genre and manly man violence will love this book! I sure didn’t!

Andrew MacLean’s first Head Lopper volume is a whopping 280 pages, following the titular Head Lopper, a white haired Thor type with a giant sword, is hired by Queen Abigail to stop the evil monsters plaguing the Island of Barra. He’s reluctantly accompanied by a severed talking head, Agatha Blue Witch, who is exactly as “nagging” as the back cover summary attests she is.

Barra is a Nordic type fantasy world (or is
Mar 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Honestly, I don't really know what to say about this one...
It definitely was quirky, full of action and a funny witch head :)
The artwork feels really basic, but it definitely works here..

From me, it gets a firm 3 stars
Jan 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
Head Lopper Vol. 1: The Island or A Plague of Beasts, is the first volume of a graphic novel by Andrew MacLean. We follow Norgal, the Head Lopper, a legendary warrior who travels the land lopping the heads off of demons, evil sorcerers, bandits and beasts alike. He travels with the decapitated head of the Grey Witch Agatha - a constant source of annoyance, but sometime a bit of help as well. The pair are faced with a kingdom under threat from an evil sorcerer who is trapped within a bog, looking ...more
Tony McMillen
Jun 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Review orignally published at my blog:

Head Lopper was every damn thing I wanted it to be and more. Equal parts, Conan, Adventure Time, Walt Simonson's Thor and Mike Mignola's monster melees.

But MacLean's work here is more than just a convincing alchemy of influences, he uses what inspires him as a springboard but then forges his own distinct, startlingly original angular style. Art-wise the closest style I can think of is Gabriel Bá but that's only beca
Des Fox
Nov 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Head Lopper is just brilliant. I was hesitant on this one. I sort of thought Apocalyptigirl was a beautiful disaster (and yeah, that book was a mess, sorry) but on this project, Maclean steps back and writes dutifully, with great pacing, a cohesive and winding plot, great moments of dialogue, and a reverence to fantasy trope-work which serves him well. It's a familiar narrative which sticks closely to the hero's journey, but while comfortable, Head Lopper is brimming with personality and powerfu ...more
Brian Dickerson
Dec 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It has a map!!!

I came into "Head Lopper" already in love with MacLean's style having previously read "Apocalyptigirl". This is An awesome example of humorous adventure. Agatha the Blue Witch was made me literally laugh out loud.

Needless to say, the landing for this arc was stuck! The epilogue, bonus material, and post epilogue outake sealed the 5 stars for me.

It's a must read.
Mar 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
I can't stress how much I've missed something like this. Giant wolves? Check. Swords? Check. Magic? Check. Creatures? Battles? Blood? Gods? Mythology? Interesting art? Everything check. The only thing that is missing is an explicit sex scene which if it were here would actually hurt the story.

Andrew MacLean created an interesting world with a great design because of his art style. Four issues and almost three hundred pages are glowing with love and hard work. I really enjoyed this change of pace
Brett Plaxton
Jun 16, 2019 rated it really liked it

Get on making Half ratings a thing, GoodReads!

A Viking story with illustrations that are reminiscent of Adventure Time, only with my blood and violence. I enjoyed the hell out of this one!
Jens Deprez
Nov 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
This was so much fun. Lots of heads were lopped!
I really like MacLean's style, reminds me of Adventure Time and Mignola's work.

Can't wait to read the second trade.
Four heads out of five!
Head Lopper, the tale of Norgal, the old solitary invincible hero and his companion/prisoner severed witch's head, Agatha. This is humorous comics series, kindly mocking the genre of epic heroic tales both with Norgal's gritty and Agatha's teenage-mocking attitude. The art is rather simple, but with very clever and spot on scenes, so it works for Head Lopper good, really good, from small panel series to two-page ones. The story is nothing much inventive, it sticks to genre stereotypes with a lit ...more
Sep 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
Well that was just god damn fantastic, wasn't it? ...more
Oct 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I picked this graphic novel up after seeing a few words written about how fresh it was, on and amazon, as well as the Tor website. It looked good and the art style reminded me of Mike Mignola, who does my favorite comic of all time, Hellboy.
I was not disappointed.
This tale is about Norgal, the white haired warrior. Is he a Viking? Kinda. Is he a barbarian? by all means, yes! Is he a writer of wrongs and a hero? Yes, and sort of. He doesn't say much because he is not much for talking abo
Rumi Bossche
Apr 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Decided to reread Head Lopper🗡

I had some problems with the abrupt story and dialogue the first time around, but i really felt in love with its cartoony mix of Hellboy, Adventure Time and Cartoon Network. And i have to say, its so much better the second time around ! Sometimes its just not the moment or anything,  but i loved it so much more this second time, the story a sort of Dungeons and Dragons with epic fantasy with also some funny moments, is spot on, and the main character,  Head Lopper, 
Jul 15, 2017 rated it liked it
If you pick up a copy of Head Lopper, you will find a giant dude holding a severed head drawn in a style heavily influenced by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola. Open the comic, and you will find more of the same: a barbarian chopping off fantasy creatures heads as if drawn by Mignola on a sunny day. This might seem to be damning the book with faint praise, but Head Lopper is so confident and expertly executed, the simplicity of the concept elevates the book's quality. Admittedly, the story and fanta ...more
Paul Allard
Sep 19, 2016 rated it it was ok
Invincible warrior saves the Isle of Barra

This comic collection deals with Norgal, the Head Lopper, a white-haired barbarian, defeating all before him as he rids the isle of Barra of monsters and villains, accompanied by the head of Agatha Blue Witch. Villains are ugly and wear black, ghosts and giants do battle, gods/sorcerers emerge seeking more power.

Tongue-in-cheek, this yarn is quite interesting with simple cartoon-style illustrations. Not particularly my thing here so I would only recommen
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Bloody good sword and sorcery.
Jack Stark
Dec 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comic, fantasy, humour
I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would. I expected this to be a run of the mill medieval-esque swords and sorcery fantasy, and it is that, but it’s got some heavy Xena: Warrior Princess vibes to it (there is even a character called Zhaania). It’s lighthearted fun, with some kick ass characters and fantastic comic relief. It’s very much aware of itself and intentionally hits every trope known to the genre.

The plot and pacing is surprisingly solid for such a story. The whimsical art isn’
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was ok
Once more I seem to have stumbled over a comic that has a weird choice for artwork. It's too colorful for its dark themes, though the lengthy fight scenes are somewhat enjoyable in their bloody carnage and too-simple dismemberment. The flow of the story and its jumping around between scenes is the worst thing about it. At least it's a fast read.

Norgal the head lopper has been carrying around Agatha the blue witch's severed but alive head for a while to ensure that others don't fall for her treac
Brett Shields
Oct 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Yet another fast and fun fantasy book. This one is a graphic novel send-up (and also a bit of a love letter) to Beowulf, Conan the Barbarian, Dungeons and Dragons, and all the other campy major fantasy epics. This is going to be the shortest of these write-ups, because I don’t have a ton to say about this other than that I really liked it. It’s not deep, or introspective, or surprising. It doesn’t have much to say about the human condition or what it is that separates man from monster. It’s abou ...more
Nov 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ircb-2020
Head Lopper carries around the lopped off head of a witch (who makes comedic banter) and together they fight an evil sorcerer's magical animals that attack an island. He swings a sword and slices things and it looks really cool. You can pretty much tell what the story is about, for all the sword and fantasy fans who like seeing big dudes use swords to kill magical monsters. It's exactly what you expect it to be, with some extra care given to visual storytelling resulting in some great comedic ti ...more
Jul 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
One of the better fantasy comics I've read. Even though I love fantasy novels I haven't actually read a lot of the genre in comic form. This one stands out amongst those I have given a go.

Really fun, vibrant cartoonish art but with legitimate fantasy world building chops. Worth a look, I'll definitely continue with the series.
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Massachusetts based comic artist, Andrew R. MacLean is the creator of the SNIP SNIP, Head Lopper, and Daruma. His work can also be found in Department O, Colonial Souls, Meatspace, Outlaw Territories, Bad Karma, and others.

Other books in the series

Head Lopper (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Head Lopper #1: The Island or a Plague of Beasts
  • Head Lopper #2: Into The Silent Wood
  • Head Lopper #3: The Sisters of the Hill
  • Head Lopper #4: The Black Bog
  • Head Lopper #5
  • Head Lopper #6
  • Head Lopper #7
  • Head Lopper #8
  • Head Lopper #9
  • Head Lopper #10

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