Graphic Novel Review Bites

wicked + divineThe Wicked and The Divine: The Faust Act

Every 90 years, the Pantheon of gods returns, reincarnating in the bodies of young people. They will live, love, hate, and laugh, and then, in two years, they will die. During that time, there is only one rule: they must not harm humanity with their abilities. Lucifer, always the troublemaker, takes issue with this.

The story is told mainly through Laura, a diehard fan of all of the gods, who has seen all of their concerts and performances and simply worships them. When Lucy is charged with the murder of a few humans, Laura is later joined by Cassandra, a journalist with a degree in mythology, who doesn’t believe these gods are anything more than freaks and a lightshow.

I’m not an expert on the different mythological gods, but I’m familiar enough to enjoy this modern take on all of them. For a more detailed exploration of the gods as they appear in this delicious comic, click here.

alex + adaAlex + Ada, Volume 1 

Sentient robots. The story’s been done countless times before. So what makes this one so special?

Tecnically, nothing. It’s about a man named Alex who’s recently gone through a bad break up, has a mundane life, and figures things are going to stay that way, until his grandmother gifts him with a shiny new android companion. After the tragic artificial intelligence uprising that resulted in a massacre, A.I.s are a big no-no. But, while Alex initially doesn’t want to keep Ada, because it’s weird, he changes his mind, but finds that her lack of a personality leaves him wanting more. But what will it mean if he illegally unlocks Ada’s A.I. and lets her truly experience what it means to be a real person?

Alex’s struggles are the focus of this first volume of the series. It is a slow story, but a deep one that digs into questions about sentiences, humanity, and responsibility. The threat of violent backlash looms, but, more important is writer Jonathan Luna’s quiet exploration of what it means to be lonely. By taking the time to tell this story, it gives the reader the time to ask the simple question: What would I do in Alex’s place…?

geniusGenius #1

This is a gritty and violent story about a young girl who claws her way to the top of the food chain within her gang-infested L.A. neighbourhoods. And when she gathers all of the gangs under her command, she turns their disenfranchised rage on their oppressors. This isn’t simply about gang warfare. Because Destiny is, as the title implies, a genius. And her strategy goes well beyond the bullets on the streets.

This book pulls zero punches. It doesn’t pander to any one side. Instead, it points out the simple fact: humans, like all animals, will do whatever it takes to survive. And if you keep beating an animal into a corner, it will eventually fight back.

Destiny is a cold and calculating commander, but she is not immune to emotions that Bernardin lets sneak in with obvious, and less obvious moments. But what really impressed me was the final page, filled with panels that promise a truly intriguing future for Destiny, and ask the question, was this her move all along?

6 Comments on “Graphic Novel Review Bites”

  1. Great reviews, Wendy!
    I read only The Wicked + the Divine, but I didn’t love it. Lucy stole the show for me; I simply wasn’t invested in other characters… but art is just beautiful. 🙂


  2. I love this graphic novel review series – I feel like I get so many great recs from you, Wendy! I’ve been dying to read The Wicked + The Divine ever since I saw some concept art floating around, but now I have to add Alex + Ada to the list as well!


    • I hope you had a chance to grab the Image Comics Humble Bundle. So many great comics. But if you have access to Comixology, Image will often put volume 1 of their graphic novels on sale so that you can check out titles like these.

      The Wicked + The Divine I most definitely recommend.


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