Heyo! Back with another weekly comic review, this time for The Wicked + The Divine. As was the case for last week’s review of Nailbiter (link), I’ve been meaning to read this since it first came out and now I am quite behind. Therefore, I’ve chosen to review just the first trade paperback and I’ll put up more reviews as I go.
So, now to the meat of it. The Wicked + The Divine is a strange beast, which is alright because I think that’s what it is going for. The premise is that there is a pantheon of gods who are reincarnated every some number of years and live among humans in a human form but with their supernatural powers. After two years, they die and the cycle repeats.
In modern times, these gods are reborn as cult icons. Whether it be musical acts or… pleasure-seekers, as a group they control the attentions of the world through the use of their insane power. We follow the events that transpire through the eyes of a “groupie” as it were, who finds herself caught up in it all. What are these gods? Why do they exist? What do they want? She tries to find these answers while being hopelessly enamored with them all (they are gods after all).
It’s pretty strange so far. Taking the mystical and mythological elements at face value, I would have guess it would be something more along the lines of a magical epic story. Instead, this comic mixes a conspiracy plot mystery with a blatant commentary of pop culture idols in the modern age.
Essentially, it takes the idea of icons to the next level. Think of famous people. Their power over people is extremely wide-ranging and powerful. Their opinions, while not law, can control people to a certain extent and definitely can influence people to a degree that laws can not. Aspiration and ambition, love or lust, these are emotions which allow icons to thrive. Laws are followed through moral obligation. Icons are followed through primal instinct.
The extension of this idea is seen in The Wicked + The Divine. What if their power was actually absolute. They have sway over that which is incomprehensible to humanity, the power of gods. It’s a scary thought to be sure.
I can’t say too much in terms of plot, as it wouldn’t really be fair to judge it based on just the first few issues. Maybe after the next volume or two I’ll start outlining thoughts about the plot progression, pace and such.
Last thing would be the setting. I’m pretty sure it takes place in Britain and I do get a pretty punk British vibe, but I’m not sure why. Seeing folks crowd into dark subway tunnels and small packed concert halls to see people wearing too much mascara just gives me that vibe, I dunno why. I guess that works with the whole premise, and hints to future uses of the idea of gods having a hypnotic influence upon the populace and the ramifications of such power.
Well, I think that’s everything. Thanks for reading and have a great day.