It is worth noting, before this review begins, that mine is not a youth defined by the Silver Age of comic books. As time has marched on, authors who did are now adults, now mature and reasoned craftsmen in the field. And it is to these men that The Dark Age Of Comic Books
was a scar, an open and terrible transition away from what it was that they loved about comic books. And it is to these men that I pen this respectful disagreement.
is a love letter to the 1970s comic books. It borders on the self-satisfied, almost smug in its quiet professing that Superman, the classic icon, choosing to remain unchanged since the 1950s was not his failing, but rather, the failing of the rest of the world for choosing to change. It stands proud and says, implicitly, that the 1950s Superman never had to make a hard moral decision, and this is what makes him a moral man, a moral bastion.
There are a lot of things about the Dark Age
that were bad, that were juvenile and immature. Kingdom Come decries them, holds them up in their ugly glory, then strikes them down, strikes them down again, and strikes them down a third time. Kingdom Come is an amazing comic book. As a narrative unto itself, it is good; it is the work of amazing amounts of effort, and a creative, clever mind that could cram it full of Shout Out
after Shout Out
. It expands interestingly on dynamics between characters, worn in time and wearied by years. It reconstructs the genre, trying to pull the older, classic comics into the modern era - and it is definitely a work that those who suffered through the Dark Ages
will appreciate, as a return to something simpler, without being something simplistic.
As a work to me as a reader, however, Kingdom Come has the unaware air of a forty year old man who lived through the seventies sneering at 'moral decay' of the youth. Without dwelling on it, I think Kingdom Come is a great comic. A comic book every comic fan should read, just like Watchmen. Like seminal works of classic literature, it is important, to me, that every comic fan should read this comic... and be able to form their own opinions on whether it's good, or bad.
So please. If you're curious... give it a read. And maybe you'll find a comic book you love, and will want to own. And maybe you'll just find something that makes you think about your genre all over again.