The Wicked + The Divine, Vol.3: Commercial Suicide
Author: Kieron Gillen, Illustrator: Jamie McKelvie
Publisher: Image Comics
Genre: Graphic Novel, Sequential Art, Fantasy
Release Date: October 5th 2016
Page Count: 144
The Wicked + The Divine contains such a unique storyline that it’s impossible to ignore. The individual issue covers are stunning in themselves, but the story within is just as fantastic. However…even with the alluring title “Rising Action”, this volume wasn’t the best for me. It was slightly hard to follow at time and when I finally got into it…it kind of just ended.
Synopsis (Volume 1)
Every ninety years, twelve gods incarnate as humans. They are loved. They are hated. In two years, they are dead. The team behind critical tongue-attractors like Young Avengers and PHONOGRAM reunite to create a world where gods are the ultimate pop stars and pop stars are the ultimate gods. But remember: just because you’re immortal, doesn’t mean you’re going to live forever.
What I Liked
The rising action. They weren’t kidding with this title. This fourth volume of The Wicked + The Divine definitely picked up in terms of the action sequences. It was super fast paced and shit went down.
The art. After the third volume tried something a little more on the experimental side, The Wicked + The Divine: Rising Action decided to bring it back to the normal art styling of Jamie McKelvie & Matt Wilson. I’ve loved the art ever since I picked up the first volume so it was definitely a bit of a bummer to see that it had been changed within the third volume. I was so glad to see it return to normal this time around.
The characters. I’ve always loved the characters within this series. They’re all pretty diverse and interesting with their own individual character traits and god-like special abilities. Obviously, I like some more than others, but they’re all still interesting and intriguing in their own unique way.
What I Didn’t Like
The confusion. It took me until almost half-way through this volume to get a grasp on what was going on. With the flashback type storyline of volume 3, we didn’t get the answers to the cliffhanger ending of volume 2 until now which made it especially difficult to remember what had even happened. I technically could have re-read the existing issues before picking up this instalment, but even so, I think the opening to volume 4 felt pretty vague until we started to get a few answers about half way through.
The ending. It was pretty underwhelming. There wasn’t really any kind of cliffhanger or anything that has be hyped up for the next volume. I’m usually left with the anxious feeling of being unable to wait for the next volume…but not this time around.
As mentioned, this wasn’t my favourite volume, but it also wasn’t terrible. Something was just lacking this time around for me. I do love that the art was back to normal and I’m still loving all of the characters, but it was just lacking a little bit of je ne sais quoi. I’m eager to see what will happen next, but I’m not exactly in any hurry.
My Previous Reviews
About The Team
Kieron Gillen first came to attention in his 2006 collaboration with Jamie McKelvie, PHONOGRAM. Jamie and he have yet to escape each other, and have somehow roped the otherwise innocent Matt Wilson into this unfortunate pop-comics Katamari. Their most successful work is their 2014 ongoing series, THE WICKED + THE DIVINE. Kieron’s other books for Image include THREE and the forthcoming THE LUDOCRATS. His other books include many titles published by Marvel (featuring characters you’ve probably heard of) and Avatar (featuring characters you probably haven’t.) He lives in London.
Jamie McKelvie has worked on a lot of comics with a lot of people. From Phonogram with Kieron Gillen, to the New York Times bestselling X-Men: Season One with Dennis Hopeless, to Defenders with Matt Fraction. Sadly, fate saw fit to throw him together with Gillen again for their recent Young Avengers run. He’s not sure what he did to deserve this. In what he laughably refers to as his spare time, Jamie has also provided art for bands such as Art Brut, Tegan and Sara, and Chvrches.
Matt Wilson has been coloring comics since 2003, getting his start coloring for the comics coloring studio Zylonol Studios. After a few years in the studio Matt branched out on his own to color titles like: Phonogram, Young Avengers, Thor, Daredevil, Wonder Woman, Swamp Thing, The Wicked + The Divine, and Paper Girls. In 2015 Matt’s work earned him Eisner Award and Harvey Award nominations.