We saw the girls, now it’s time to head down memory lane to see how Esker, Mizumi’s icy mercenary, came to be.
Esker: A serpentine ridge of gravelly and sandy drift, believed to have been formed by streams under or in glacial ice.
Cold, hard and etched — that’s Esker in a nutshell. Here are the first sketches Chris turned in. These ones were a little too “cute” for the series’ nastiest villain, and he doesn’t quite fit in with Mizumi and her daughters, but they’re definitely “cool” designs. The creatures below Esker are the “Kuhlaups” that eventually became the panther-like beasts seen in volumes 1 and 3.
This second-round pic brings Esker into the Moraine Kingdom style club, but he’s a little too crustacean by way of Hellraiser, which seems at odds with his icy demeanor.
Almost there! This version blends Esker’s menacing presence and icy minimalism with Moraine fashion sensibilities. He still underwent a few more changes before the final book, but the essentials are in place.