The Wicked + the Divine #1-3

The Wicked + The Divine #1 cover

Image Comics is putting out some of the most exciting comics out there, and their newest must-read series is The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie.

The Wicked + The Divine postulates gods as pop stars, and it’s drawn in typically gorgeous fashion by McKelvie. Gillen portrays the absolute devotion of a dedicated fan in tangible fashion before sending us into the question of how our world would deal with these beings, plus a murder mystery added on top just to make it even more interesting.

In issue #2, someone says, to a new god, “You will be loved. You will be hated. You will be brilliant. Within two years, you will be dead.” That sums it all up, except then, reading Gillen’s editorial note in issue #1 tells us that it’s his meditation on creating art, which puts it all into new light. It’s an astounding series, about youth and power and sex and fame and yearning. Really good stuff.

The Wicked + The Divine #1 cover

With the third issue, though, I no longer know exactly what’s going on. It’s still absolutely wonderful to look at, and it feels like a puzzle that I don’t know enough about world mythology to work out (Wikipedia helps), or maybe it’s just that I’m too old and I’ve outgrown the absolute passion raised by just the right band or idol. (The letter column, with missives from those deeply affected by the book, suggests the latter.) It’s all terribly meaningful, in some other language, about fate and death and passion.

Well worth reading and rereading, so next issue I’ll have more figured out.

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