It’s Better to Burn Out than to Fade Away


The Wicked + The Divine #1

So, the setup: once every century, the gods return to Earth. Not all of them — just a dozen. They inhabit the bodies of young people, they perform miracles, they perform concerts, they get worshiped by masses of people — and in two years or less, they all die. And the newest crop of gods are back on the material plane again.

Our viewpoint character is Laura, a fangirl looking for some gods to worship. She shows up for a concert by Amaterasu, a Shinto sun goddess inhabiting the body of a white girl from Exeter. Amaterasu pretty much blows everyone’s minds, and when Laura wakes up, she meets Lucifer, who takes her backstage to meet Amaterasu and Sakhmet while they’re getting interviewed by the skeptical media. And then there’s the brutal and utterly hilarious assassination attempt, gleefully shut down by Luci. But is the aftermath going to lead to the downfall of the gods?

Verdict: Thumbs up. As I believe we’re all quite well aware by now, Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie really love modern fantasy about pop music, and this one is basically pop stars as gods — insanely, gloriously popular for a couple years before they inevitably burn out and fade away. The art is spectacular, the character design is wondrous, the writing, characterization, and humor are fantastic. This was really great fun, and y’all better jump on the bandwagon for this one.


The Manhattan Projects #21

We finally get to focus on Laika, stuck on a very lonely mission exploring deep space. She’s captured by a spaceship categorizing alien lifeforms, is given a universal-translater snack, and is put into a cell with an alien glob and a lying spy-bot. But the ship is soon attacked by a larger warship, and Laika and her companions must flee to safety — and in the process, she gets dowsed in a genetic re-sequencing liquid. What happens to the world’s most famous space dog after a few thousand generations of forced evolution?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Lots of action and humor and weird stuff, and it’s great to get to spend some time with Laika, who we just haven’t gotten to spend all that much of this series with.


The Witcher #4

Geralt the Witcher and Vara the succubus find Jakob the hunter in the dining hall with his wife Marta the vampire. Jakob has been desperate to find Marta all this time, but is now terrified to be in the same room with his terrifying, near-silent wife. After that, the Grave Hag makes it into the house and leads an attack of zombies. Geralt and Vara enjoy some time together, Jakob decides he wants to leave the house, then decides he doesn’t want to leave the house, and Geralt discovers one of the house’s great secrets.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Good action and some wonderfully creepy weird stuff make this one a lot more fun.

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