Synopsis: Hidden from danger, the Messiah was born and raised behind the walls of a compound — surrounded and worshipped by followers of the church. As she gets older, and with no sign of the ‘powers’ she was promised, the reluctant teen prophet rejects her parents, God, and the teachings of the church. She breaks free, not knowing the soldiers of the Antichrist are hot on her heels.
Review: First off before I start. I’d like to thank Rachael over at Millarworld for getting me caught up on this. As I missed the opening issue late last month or last year. I vaguely remember Mark Millar’s first American Jesus story, which ran in his anthology comic book magazine. The name of which escapes me at this time. Suffice to say. I’m not at all surprised to see that it has gotten a few sequels.
Having escaped their home and moved to Waco in Texas. The story picks up roughly 18 years on as parents Luciana and Eddie are starting to have a few issues with their daughter Catalina, who is thought of by the church as the Lamb of God and the new Messiah. Catalina is getting moody like most people in their late teens, but she is also doubting that she is the chosen one and has obviously read up on many different religious mythologies in order to try and disprove it to her parents.
There are a lot of fun references to events from the 1990s in this issue as well as well woven conspiracy theories, which could have been lifted from the pages of a David Icke book. We get a fun moment where the church gets a visit from one of their government insiders who shows them the latest in RFID technology, which is what we will likely all have implanted into us in a few year’s time or not depending on what you believe.
Peter Gross does some solid artwork in this issue. I particularly liked how he drew the compound where Eddie, Luciana, and Catalina were staying. Given how world war II it looked. I can’t really blame Catalina for wanting to get out of there. And no amount of ‘Walker Texas Ranger’ on the TV would entice me to stay either. The drawing of Eddie and Luciana as relatively young-looking 30 somethings threw me a little given that I’d gone from reading issue one straight into issue two. It took me a little while to adapt to the change. I was also a little disappointed that we didn’t get a repeat visit from the Angel in White from issue one who had the look of Danny Trejo, but with green eyes. Not sure if that was deliberate. Overall though the art works really well with the stories narrative.
Mark Millar has done a pretty solid job of continuing ‘American Jesus’ and I enjoyed his use of many of the conspiracy theories of these times across the first two issues of the story and look forward to seeing how they get portrayed on the small of large screen depending on whether this becomes a series or a movie. I totally understood where Catalina was coming from when she was calling her parents crazy, but I could also understand their point of view as well in that basically they just want to protect their daughter irrespective of her being the lamb of god or not.
Overall. A solid second issue which sets things up brilliantly for issue three.
American Jesus #2 will be out in all good comics stores on Wednesday 22 January.