Thursday, January 04, 2018

Escape the Inescapable

Mister Miracle #1-5 (DC, November 2017 to February 2018, $3.99)
Now, this is a comic book. Written by Tom King and drawn by Mitch Gerads, this comic is more than just a new series featuring Jack Kirby's 1970s Fourth World character. In fact, it was somewhat difficult at first to read Kirby's naming while reading someone else's work. That soon changed as the series became its own thing, and a thing worth reading.

I'm not going to recount the plot or events of these five issues. Just know that the New Gods are here. Darkseid has returned, and Orion, erstwhile highfather, is leading the forces against him. He enlists—commands—the aid of Mister Miracle and his wife Barda, who soon fall short of his expectations.

But things aren't as they seem. Mister Miracle tries to escape the inescapable at the outset, and much of the series reads as though a fever dream. Is this real? What is the meaning of life? Is Funky Flashman John Byrne? (He contributed to New Gods in the mid-'90s.) For the most part, the comic book is a meditation on meaning, on love, on family. #4's trial and #5's couple's day out are particularly wonderful examples of modern superhero storytelling. More than a superhero comic, this is a very human comic—mundane and fantastic in equal measure.

Availability: You can buy individual issues online. The original 18 issues have also been collected.

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