Zed's comic easter egg/lore discussion [Lore dump?]

Spoilers. You have been warned. So, after sifting through the first three issues of the comic a few times, I think I can do with going over some stuff, specifically, as I heard from a rioter responding to someone else's post... "A bunch of visual easter eggs and clues in all the issues no one has noticed yet." **With that in mind, this is probably gonna be a LOOOONG post.** First things first, one of the things that bugs me when it comes to the Zed comic is that people don't seem to like the perspective of the comic. **That is, "Shen doesn't ACT very much like the eye of twilight", or "Why is Zed being framed almost like he's the good guy?"** First off, Shen DOES act like the eye of twilight in the comic, in fact much more than when he acts enraged; the only time he actually ACTIVELY pursues/attacks Zed is when Zed is literally in the same room as him. And even then, as Zed honors the Code, Shen stops attacking him. Prior to this, Akali reports to Shen that Zed killed Shen's uncle, blew up an entire bloody festival and so on; if anything, Shen might feel justified in attacking Zed, if not _just_ for the fact that his enemy shows up out of nowhere for seemingly no reason years after murdering his _DAD._ Second, just because Zed is an assassin that can use forbidden shadow magic doesn't _inherently_ make him an evil character. If nothing else, he acts mostly like a regular assassin, albeit with a bit of a tragic backstory and an edgy motif, and this is reflected in the fact that most of his jobs involve killing people for the Navori Brotherhood or other organizations. We get a lore tidbit in the comic as well, referring to the fact that Zed refuses to kill innocents and children. Typical Hitman type stuff. **Rant over, now on to things that I think were little easter eggs in the context of the story/comic?** _First thing I thought was neat was that we get a pretty clear context of how old all of the characters are in this particular comic._ Zed is probably late twenties, early thirties, with Kayn and Akali being no older than twenty, and hell, I'd find it pretty believable for them to be about 17 or 18. This also applies to the rest of Zed's troupe (the now dead ones). The reason for this is pretty simple, Zed remembers time before the war 12 years prior, and in his flashback 19 years prior he appears to be in his early teens if not slightly younger, which would make him old enough to mostly remember that period, while toddlers Kayn and Akali probably would not have a very clear recollection of the war, much less before it. Jhin is also timeless by the way. What a legend. Second off, and this is probably tiny, but in the Second issue, page 3, the lanterns seem oddly reminiscent of a certain Jhin visual cue... i.e his 4 shot indicator in game. https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/222166752010829824/669772760242847744/Desktop_Screenshot_2020.01.22_-_21.58.20.79_LI.jpg Oh, and looking back on it... I wonder if Jhin is capable of influencing and/or hypnotizing people. Kinda strange that his signature lantern would just be hanging off of her boat like she wouldn't notice. https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/222166752010829824/669774310830768138/Desktop_Screenshot_2020.01.22_-_23.20.43.39_LI.jpg Tying into that, in the pages after as Jhin attacks Zed's troupe, he only fires four shots, true to form. Topping this off, the pink/purple flames that engulf the buildings afterward, as Zed begins to chase Jhin, they're not just ordinary flames... if you look closely, you can see butterflies. https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/222166752010829824/669776439205298186/Desktop_Screenshot_2020.01.22_-_23.32.09.30.png Another reaaaally tiny easter egg, is that in the final page of issue 2, first frame, the bush in the foreground has what looks like four little berries on it. nothing too special, just a neat little tidbit, perhaps to indicate Jhin's presence. One pretty big neat piece; for a comic about Zed specifically, it's kind of ironic that Jhin is the largest figure in two out of these three releases already. Not only that, but primarily he seems to be pulling the strings, both figuratively in the covers AND literally as the story progresses. This isn't just about Zed, this is all about how Jhin not only ruined Zed's life, but Shen's as well, almost as though he had planned it out that they would become enemies in the way he handles his puppets. With those bits out of the way, the relatively obvious things I found in the comic, I also wanted to talk about the lore and some of the implications that the story thus far is bringing to light. _Primarily, why Zed does what he does._ Mainly, it looks like Zed is being a normal assassin, doing assassin-y things, but he seems to have very close ties specifically with the Ionian nationalists, the Navori Brotherhood, which makes me think personally that he wants to strengthen the resolve and the nationalism of ionians to strike back against Noxus. There are two things that make me think this that might be a bit obscure. Shen's line in one of the issues is that "Vengeance is a path into a forest of shadows," when Akali suggests that they go after Zed. Yeah, pretty sure that's not just a throwaway line there. I think that's a hint as to why Zed is now the leader of the Order of Shadow, both because he's probably strengthening the faction that hates Noxus, AND because Zed has a unique hatred for Jhin and his role to play in the entire story. This ties into why later on Zed announces Kayn to be his successor; I don't think it was for ANY particular reason, I think he named Kayn to one, shut him up, and two, hint that if it came down to it, Zed would abandon his clan, his pupils, and his ideals for a chance to kill Jhin. That's why he said it and just walked off, seemingly at random. Another really important thing that people might have forgotten about Zed, is that in a lot of ways, he has broken tradition, specifically the traditions of the Kinkou, with the way his clan operates, obviously the use of violence and murder, and a bit more with the compassion that he shows for his pupils. This is a kind of compassion you don't actually see between Shen and Akali, at least not nearly to the same degree. With Shen, he'll warn Akali not to go chasing Zed, but that's about it. He never seems to go out of his way to actually stop her, up until she actually attacks Zed, and that's not out of concern, that's more than likely out of agitation than anything. One thing that does leave me with questions, is how Zed's lines are shown. The octagonal red outlined boxes are clearly exposition, or when Zed is just talking to himself, also exposition. So what of this image, here? https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/222166752010829824/669775237428281373/Desktop_Screenshot_2020.01.22_-_23.26.52.68_LI.jpg If he's talking to the reader, that would be a super cool 4th wall break. If he's talking to his inner shadow demons... That would also be super cool. And the big kicker, this is where I'm bringing out the tinfoil hat. The way Zed talks about killing Master Kusho... I think Kusho attacks him inside of the temple. I think that the way Kusho treats Zed almost like a son, perhaps moreso than his OWN son in the flashbacks, led to a moment of desperation where Kusho actually attacks Zed in the Kinkou Temple which leads to Zed killing him. Considering, if Zed really wanted Kusho dead, he could have easily killed him while standing outside. There was no one else inside of the building that we know of for Zed to blame, so finding a scapegoat wouldn't have been something Zed was concerned about IF he really wanted to kill Kusho. _I think... the reason why Zed said that Kusho was weak, was because in his desperation, Kusho abandoned his ideals and attempted to wipe his slate clean by trying to kill Zed._ What are your thoughts? Anything I missed, anything I might have gotten wrong? I'd be super interested in hearing some other opinions and general little bits and pieces people were able to get from this.
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