Written by Tom King
Art and Colours by Mitch Gerads
Published by DC Comics
When it was announced that Tom King would be writing exclusively for DC Comics towards the end of his critically acclaimed run on the Vision for Marvel, I was really excited for the possibilities that his creative genius would bring to the DCU. Omega Men was one of my favourite books to come out in the last five years and that epic scope could be continued through any number of characters in this universe. I was most surprised and a little skeptical that he was put on the main Batman title but even then, he brought a beautiful combination of simple and complex human emotions for Batman that I never thought anybody could bring out in this modern age of the Caped Crusader. That being said, Mister Miracle #1 promises to be the spiritual successor to both Omega Men and the Vision and if you haven’t read either of those, you are in for a treat.
The New Gods realm hasn’t been too prevalent outside of Darkseid and Apokolips so if you’re not familiar, here’s a little breakdown. Darkseid rules Apokolips with a tyrannical iron fist while Highfather is the benevolent leader of New Genesis. To end a war between the two worlds, the two leaders traded sons. Mister Miracle is Highfather’s biological son, raised on the unforgiving world of Apokolips. That in itself would send you for a doozy but in Tom King’s hands, this tale takes this message to the core. In an interview, King mentions that this series is deeply embedded in the Christian idea of God giving his son up for humanity. And in the Kirby adaptation of this myth, God has given his son to the devil. You feel the raw emotional repercussion of that deal throughout this issue. And the blur between what’s real for Scott and what emotional scars were left from this deal can really be felt.
Mitch Gerads’ art really adds are realistic take on Kirby’s fantastical New Gods universe. I struggle to use the word gritty because in the last 25 years, grit has been synonymous with a lot of things I don’t agree with but here I use gritty to describe the raw emotion that exudes through the art. Maybe we don’t know what’s real. “Darkseid Is.” are words that appear a lot and maybe he’s there physically to mess with Scott and the rest of the world. This issue illustrates the threat of Darkseid’s effect on Scott and how he grew up in the worst kind of environment. Is it Darkseid and his evil plot or is it the Darkseid in Scott’s head? Or is it both?
The issue is one piece of a masterpiece puzzle mostly told in King’s signature nine panel per page method and while he didn’t originate this panelling design, he really owns it in each of his stories. I’m really excited for the rest of this series and the idea that Tom King can remake Kirby’s 4th World universe and reinvigorate it without losing any of the Kirby magic.