God is Dead #1
Writer(s): Jonathon Hickman & Mike Costa
Art: Di Amorim
Cover(s): Jonathon Hickman, Di Amorim
Publisher: Avatar Press
Hickman does Avatar. Those three words are enough to make an industry stand-up and take notice. With Hickman’s Infinity in full swing over at Marvel and East of West blowing everything at Image out of the water, many are wondering what Hickman ‘unhinged’ will be like. With a smaller label like Avatar, a purveyor of some pretty twisted comics, Hickman’s latest indie offering has the potential to raise the label to new heights. Yet does an unbridled scope help God is Dead, or is it merely an afterthought product of neglect due to his busy schedule?
God is Dead tells the story of Zeus and his return to earth. Disgusted with the way humans have been treating his precious gift, Zeus summons all the deities of the world for a meeting. It seems that the world is no longer going to be in our control. We blew it and now the Gods want it back. But, like the troublesome creatures we are, we aren’t giving up our home turf without a fight.
The initial arrival of Zeus appers to be met with little fanfare as the reader is barely given a chance to see the consequences of the deity’s arrival. While the first issue’s content, mainly its story structure, is a little underwhelming, Hickman fans know that his writing is best read collected. Often times he deals with over-arching themes that aren’t evident to the reader until the final panel of his last issue. The same looks to be true here. The story is set-up nicely, but it’s fairly obvious that the good stuff is on its way.
One of the reasons the story may appear underwhelming could be to the art. Di Amorim does a serviceable job yet nothing more. This is a book about living, breathing Gods who come to Earth to smote us, is it too much to ask that the book look a little flashy? The muted tones and washed-out shading make this story feel all too human which seems to be an issue with a number of Avatar’s books. One can only imagine what JH Williams III or even Brian Bolland could bring to a series like this.
All in all, God is Dead is a mediocre start to what potentially could be an epic read. While the underwhelming art may be here to stay, this is a great time for Hickman to showcase his strengths. There’s potential here, let’s hope it lives up to it.