Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Super-Powered Comics: Jersey Gods #1 through 3
So, yeah, I originally meant to do a review of the first issue after it came out. Then I was going to review issue one and two. But I have been dreadfully behind on all my reading, my comics most of all, so those fell by the wayside. But having finished the third issue (itself now over a week old), I have to weigh in on Image Comics newest ongoing.
Written by Glen Brunswick (Killing Girl, Gray Area), Jersey Gods plays off classic Kirby much like Joe Casey and Tom Scioli’s Godland, but unlike that title, JG focuses on a pantheon of New Gods-esque characters. Barock is our lead, an oddly white (considering his name) deity in the story’s Orion role. Like Orion, he is his people’s premiere warrior. Unlike Orion, he is a good-looking chap with a well-rounded personality. While facing off one of the enemy gods in a New Jersey mall, he meets Zoe, and the beginnings of an intergalactic romance seems to be in the wings.
But three issues in, and we really haven’t got to it. We see scenes where both think about it, but most of the story seems to focus on Barock and his companions Helius and Rushmore as they go on a space adventure. This gives the title a rather odd pacing, but things seem to be picking up with issue three.
Issue three also gives a solid selling point in the beginning of a back-up series written by none other than Mark Waid. Waid’s task seems to be to flesh out the thousand year old war between the two alien races of our title. The first story was very short, but offered some room for future intrigue.
The art by Dan McDaid fits the title perfectly. He channels Kirby without ever aping classic Kirby. His faces weaken when drawn from a distant, but his figures mix normal humans and massive superheroes perfectly. Covers have came from some great indy artists as well: Mike Allred, Darwyn Cooke, and Paul Pope so far. I especially love Allred’s cover to issue one, so much so that I made it my wallpaper! (Click the image to see it full size!)
Jersey Gods oozes with potential, even thought it hasn’t quite realized it yet. Nonetheless, it gets my Recommendation.