Review by Tony Keen
Wow. It’s getting harder and harder to talk about The Wicked + The Divine, Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie’s fantasy of gods reincarnated as pop stars/superheroes. First of all, WicDiv is so far into the story here that it is hard not to spoil earlier volumes. Secondly, as noted before, there just aren’t enough superlatives. Every time the reader thinks that Gillen and McKelvie can’t top what they’ve already done, they go ahead and do just that.
Gillen and McKelvie are into the end game of WicDiv by this point – there’s only a year or so of the regular comic left to run, so just two more graphic novels (plus one collecting various specials that look back at previous Occurrences of the Pantheon). Hence the revelations are coming thick and fast, and the reader is starting to understand more of what is actually going on. The volume picks up where Imperial Phase, Part I left off, with the Pantheon in pursuit of the psychotic and dangerous Sakhmet. But all sorts of other things are happening. Gods die. One character turns out to be not who the reader might have thought they were. And the volume ends with a double-whammy of revelations that turns the whole series completely on its head.
What’s great about this is that the reader is surprised, but does not at any point feel cheated or lied to. In the meantime McKelvie’s art, aided by Matthew Wilson’s colours and Clayton Cowles’ letters (see sample art), remains superb.
Absolutely top quality stuff, as good as comics can get. As ever, start with The Faust Act.