Darkseid: The Resistance
Written by: Mark Evanier
Art by: Scott Kolins
Colors by: Dave McCaig
Cover by: Chris Burnham and Nathan Fairbairn
OMAC: One Man Army Corps
Written by: Paul Levitz
Pencils by: Phil Hester
Inks by: Ande Parks
Colors by: Dave Stewart
Previously: Jack Kirby left Marvel for DC and created a pantheon of New Gods, including Darkseid, the evil ruler of Apokolips and bringer of Anti-Life, one of the greatest of the many creations that make him deserving of the title The King of Comics
What Happened: The scene is set immediately with a splash page showing the area knowns as Armagetto on Apokolips, where the giant statue of Darkseid that looms over the workers and factories has been defaced, the word “Tyrant” written across it in blood and waste; there is a resistance on Apokolips. In a small shack in Armagetto we meet our three resistance fighters, led by Makayla. They are trying to sleep, but it is not going well as their nightmares tell us of their backstory. They were captives in the orphanage of Granny Goodness, until they recently and violently escaped, led by Makayla, a Fury in training. Makayla awakes in the morning and we see her morning ritual, including starting a daily diary entry into a Motherbox, which is contraband in Armagetto. The three pack up and prepare to continue their plan to rally the people against Darkseid.
Darkseid himself then enters the story as we are taken to his throne room, where his boot is poised above the head of the Parademon that was responsible for capturing the missing revolutionaries. He exposits that the hunt for them has been going on for three years, and in his displeasure kills the parademon with his omega beams, as the creature begs for his life. Darkseid is then joined by Desaad, and he swears he will not let another human escape him, not after Mister Miracle. They summon the Female Furies, and Darkseid instructs them not simply to destroy the traitors, but to make an example of them and destroy what they represent.
After Desaad gives the furies a quick mission briefing, we check in with our three fugitives, who are being denied shelter by a frightened citizen of Apokolips, who compares giving shelter to suicide, knowing the scope of Darkseid’s vengeance. They leave one of their group behind when he refuses to follow Makayla any further, and the remaining two move onward as the deserter is captured by the Furies. He is brought before Darkseid, and eagerly gives up all information he knows before he is summarily punished for his escape attempt. The Furies then quickly descend on the fugitive’s campsite. They capture Makayla, who knows she is outmatched and gives herself up, but her companion Lukas was gathering supplies, and was not taken by the Furies. This allows the two of them to conspire to use Motherbox to secretly record Darkseid while he speaks to Makayla before she dies. She gets him to admit his fear of losing his power, and tells him that she’s recorded him. Furious, Darkseid destroys Motherbox, but Lukas and Makayla use the opportunity to escape, and run off to continue their impossible struggle on the streets of Apokolips.
The main Darkseid story is followed up by a short backup featuring OMAC, the One Man Army Corps, as he learns that the GPA that commands him used him as a weapon to commit a war crime, and he takes revenge on them. After that are reprints of two classic Kirby issues. The first one is a story featuring the Forever People fighting off an attack from Apokolips, and the second is a strange story about a mysterious all-seeing eye that resembles the symbol for Brother Eye from the late OMAC comics.
Thoughts on the issue: This issue has all the trappings of a great issue focused on Darkseid. A glimmer of hope in a world of futility. The whole time reading this, I knew that this wouldn’t be a hero story, where the good guys take down the bad guys. Here, Darkseid is God, and a little graffiti, the smallest amount of freedom is the most someone can do. The new characters are interesting and unique, each one providing a different amount of motivation and approach to their situation. The Furies were depicted as intensely as ever, mixing camp with horror to make for strange and uncomfortable figures. Darkseid had the gravity he deserved, imposing and thoughtful, but angry and hungry. Scott Kolins rose to the occasion with his art, creating a jagged and heavy feel that evokes the sinister feeling of Apokolips.
One Last Thing: Darkseid Is.
Final Score: 9/10