The Wicked + The Divine #3 Review

Written by: Kieron Gillen

Art by: Jamie McKelvie

Publisher: Image

The Wicked + the Divine is a strange series by Kieron Gillen. In this series, twelve gods return to earth in the form of young people every ninety years, only to die within two years. It’s 2014 and the gods have returned, and they are all famous (mostly singers) with huge cult followings.

The protagonist in this story appears to be Laura, a normal girl who has been tossed into the underworld after attending one of the godesses’ concerts and meeting Lucifer. Laura is not an especially exciting character so far. We know that she is a fan of all of these gods and goddesses and that she knows a lot about all of them, and we also know she’s been arguing with her parents. Otherwise, we are three issues in and we don’t know what is really motivating Laura besides her desire to be accepted by the gods.

So far, each issue has had a different mythology as the focus. In this issue, the two divine beings in question are Baphomet and the Morrigan. Coming in to the series, I didn’t know much about many of the gods they are talking about, but I think it’s worthwhile to do a bit of research about each one. In the case of Morrigan, I was unsure as to what was happening until I did a Wikipedia search, and then the issue made a lot more sense to me.

The background knowledge also helps appreciate the art. James McKelvie has worked in major symbols of each god into their outfits or appearance. The Morrigan is depicted as a swarm of crows and Baphomet is wearing a goat skull around his neck. Beyond the cleverness of inserting symbols into the artwork, everything McKelvie has done for this book is stunning. The story is losing me, but the bold, vibrant art has me coming back every month.

The dialogue in this issue gets a little weird and is definitely for mature audiences, I was a little surprised that the Morrigan has a much dirtier and violent mouth than Baphomet. It’s a little silly, but I suppose it fits the Underworld.

The Wicked + the Divine is an interesting comic with a totally strange premise. The gods that have come back are cocky, shallow, and vain, but their lives as celebrities are fascinating. I would love to see more background information, as nothing has really explained who all the gods are, why they return, or why they live in the limelight as pop singers and artists. Hopefully, these questions will be answered in future issues.