With little to no exposition or explanation, the Wicked + the Divine begins, dropping the reader into a world of gods and gods that are monsters. For some, the feeling would be jarring, but to me, it’s perfect.
The story starts off with Laura, a young girl in London who follows the Pantheon scene. The Pantheon, you find out, is a group of 12 gods incarnated as humans, bestowed with divine power, and use that power to become pop culture sensations. Sounds awesome, huh? Except that once those mortals receive their divinity, they have an expiration date: they have 2 years left to live.
The premise may sound a little odd at first – randomly generated gods becoming pop icons? – but it becomes apparent as the comic progresses that there is much more to it than just music and adoration. The plot runs much deeper than you would originally think.
That being said, the flaw with this series is that sometimes, it’s a touch hard to follow. The story carries so many nuances and details that it can be overwhelming and convoluted, leaving you with too many unanswered questions. Occasionally, I had to re-read a comic or two, as to make sure I knew what was going on.
However, aside from that, Wic+Div is artfully done. The art (done by Jamie McKelvie) is always flawless and beautiful, truly capturing both the beauty and the horror of the story. On top of that, the cast is one of the most diverse group of characters I’ve ever seen in a comic book ever; race, gender, sexuality, nothing is held back, not even Kanye West (or at least a character that looks a hell of a lot like him).
Despite the plot being a little complicated, this comic is enthralling. The characters, the art, the story, all work together beautifully to create a book that is definitely worth a read. Published by Image Comics, the Wicked + the Divine is available through Comixology, the Image Comics website, and most anywhere else you buy comics.