MTG Confirms Liliana's Hero Journey Will Be Defined by Loss

Warning: Contains spoilers for Magic: The Hidden Planeswalker #2

The beautiful and cunning master necromancer Liliana Vess has been a lot of things since her debut in Magic: The Gathering, but she only recently started to accept her role as a hero. This was all due to the sacrifice of her friend, Gideon Jura, who gave his life for Liliana's, proving to her that acts of selflessness are indeed possible. The latest Magic comic book series stars Liliana, confirms that the necromancer's hero journey will always be defined by the legacy in her life by Gideon.

Liliana's inability to save her brother, Josu, led to the awakening of her Spark and to a deep lust for power, which made her strike dangerous bargains with four different demons, and ultimately become the reluctant servant of Magic's biggest villain: the dragon-god Nicol Bolas. On the way, however, Liliana also made powerful and trustworthy friends, such as Jace Beleren and his fellow members of the Gatewatch, including Gideon Jura. When the final act of Bolas' master plan brought him to Ravnica, Liliana rebelled against the dragon, contributing to his defeat but at the same time triggering the magic wards that would have killed her. Gideon stepped in, took the curse on himself, and saved Liliana, who has since been wondering why someone would give his life for her. Since that fated moment, Liliana has been determined to make Gideon's sacrifice worthy, embarking on a journey of redemption.

Related: Magic's Chandra and Garruk Finally Get the Spotlight in New Story Arc

In Magic: The Hidden Planeswalker #2, by Mairghread Scott, Fabiana Mascolo, and Francesco Segala, Liliana is struggling to accept that she is on the side of good. When her colleagues at Stryxhaven school of magic call her a hero, Liliana cannot look at herself in that way, because her term of comparison is Gideon and she feels not at all like him. Despite that, Liliana still decides to try to save a mysterious girl hunted by the evil Tezzeret. Though Liliana might have bigger problems as Magic could be setting up Phyrexia's return.

Liliana Vess is one of the most popular characters in Magic: The Gathering lore, thanks to her sardonic and cynical attitude and her tragic backstory. Liliana's journey to redemption has been very long, and her treason against Bolas signified that she finally chose to put others before herself (and her survival). However, Gideon's sacrifice opened a whole new avenue in the development of Liliana's character. She now has to prove that Gideon did the right thing in saving her, and the first person she has to convince is herself. Saving Magic's mysterious new planes-destroying planeswalker can be an important step for Liliana in this journey.

Gideon's sacrifice added a lot of depth to Liliana's character, who before that was starting to feel a little stale in the stereotypes of the anti-heroine, femme fatale, and unreliable ally. Magic: The Hidden Planeswalker puts the spotlight on everyone's favorite necromancer, reminding fans that Liliana's path to becoming a true hero will still be a long one.

Next: MTG Is Setting the Stage for the Return of Phyrexia

Look for Magic: The Hidden Planeswalker #2, available now from BOOM! Studios.

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