The Wicked + The Divine #11
Written by Kieron Gillen
Art by Jamie McKelvie
Colors by Matthew Wilson
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover by Fiona Staples
Release Date: June 3, 2015
Cover Price: $3.50
Well, well, well. It appears that others besides myself have taken a shine to this comic series. While this is technically a review of The Wicked + The Divine #11, I wanted to alert you to some other news that has recently made a few headlines. It appears that this little Eisner nominated comic has been optioned by Universal Television to become a television series through Matt Fraction and Kelly Sue DeConnick’s production company Milkfed Criminal Masterminds. So there! But seriously, how cool is it to see a new comic series get recognition right from the start? Keep reading to find out what makes this comic so notable.
First off, if you are only a sometime reader of this series, I may drop a hint or two as to things that transpired in past issues. In order to speak to events in this current installment, it’s inevitable that I reference the last ten issues. So, in advance: I’m sorry.
Now, having covered that, a lot takes place before this current issue. The search for Lucifer’s killer continues, with minimal headway since the event. Where it was once Laura and Cassandra searching for clues, it is now Laura alone who continues the quest for the truth. This is mainly due to Cassandra and her crew being transformed into the Norns (the Fates of past, present, and future).
While these gods of the Pantheon are extraordinary in every way, they are not truly celestial beings. Instead they are akin to avatars, mortals that have been granted the power of the deities. In essence, they are empowered with such a magnitude of abilities that their human bodies literally cannot sustain it for long. This works quite well since the cycle of these twelve gods happens every ninety years. Their presence makes others ache for them and they burn so brightly on our plane that their lifespan is reduced to a mere two years. To quote the comics: “You are of the Pantheon. You will be loved. You will be hated. You will be brilliant. Within two years, you will be dead.” And while this may not seem like a fair trade-off, to the young men and women endowed with the powers, they by and large seem to crave it.
In our current issue, gods battle gods for what they call the Prometheus Gambit. This is apparently where it is believed that you can absorb the life force and powers of a god from the Pantheon if you were to take their life. And while it’s discredited in that it won’t work for mortals, it seems another god can actually manage it. Which is why a certain underworld godling is after their peers. But even the immortals have a watcher, a nanny of sorts. And she doesn’t take kindly to anyone breaking the rules. Even if she doesn’t necessarily follow them herself.
A lot of folks compliment the art in this series, and I completely agree that Jamie McKelvie does a phenomenal job. It’s never overbearing or too simple, the artwork seems just right throughout this and every issue. But what has hooked me in is the superb storyline that Kieron Gillen has created. It’s a web of stories within stories. Every time I feel like I have a handle on what’s going on, he throws in a twist that completely knocks me off balance, especially in this issue. He left me at a loss for words on page 26.
It is only eleven issues in and this story has been a whirlwind. I alternate between amazed and ecstatic every time I read this series; the characters are well-defined and are almost caricatures of themselves at different points in the tale. As the new gods embrace their powers, they seem to lose more and more of themselves to the spirits that inhabit their bodies. But you shouldn’t lose out on this comic, it’s an easy fix to grab the collected works or seek out the individual comics in order to catch up on this exquisite and unique series. I urge you to embrace The Wicked + The Divine, you’ll regret it one day if you don’t!