INJUSTICE: GODS AMONG US VOL. 1
Written by Tom Taylor
Art by Jheremy Raapack, Mike S. Miller
Published by DC Comics
Release Date: November 13, 2013
The rules as we know them are thrown out the window by Tom Taylor as his unpredictable script takes readers down a “what-if” rabbit hole of never knowing what might come next. Injustice is filled with shocking moments (and, quite possibly, a “fridging” situation, but that is a discussion for another day) that will keep readers on their toes from the first page to the last. Because this series exists outside of the DCU continuity, Taylor is able to let loose in this series, which has a very similar vibe to Marvel’s Old Man Logan. Violence is definitely on the menu, which is fitting for a fighting game, but Taylor does a great job of keeping the story in this volume from being a constant slugfest. There is a lot of very insightful dialogue in this collection, some observations that really cut deep to the core of these characters and their personalities, and I very much appreciated Taylor’s take on some of the big names of the DCU. His is a fresh voice and a fresh take on some legendary characters, free of the baggage of a shared universe. He takes these well known characters and runs a little wild, creating a thrill ride of a read that was surprisingly gripping for a video game tie-in. Once I started I couldn’t put this book down, ravenously devouring the story, determined to find out what was going to happen next as these titans started to square off. Taylor adds in a fair amount of humour when appropriate (and sometimes needed), and keeps the story from becoming too convoluted. There are twists and turns and unexpected events, but for the most part it is a straightforward read with the excitement coming from never knowing what might happen next, rather than a dozen levels of subplot. In this volume it is very obvious that he is building toward something absolutely explosive, and I can’t wait to see what that might be.
Jheremy Raapack & Mike S. Miller handle most of the art duties in this collection, and for the most part their work is very solid. Due to the nature of the original release of this series (weekly digital chapters) it is difficult to expect a visually cohesive work from start to finish. Raapack & Miller’s pages are the strongest of the bunch, delivering some fantastic panels and splashes of these iconic characters, though the flow of the collection is hurt by the rapidly changing styles throughout. For the most part the artists attempt to maintain one cohesive feel, which is helped by the colour work, but at times the style shifts are jarring. Both artists do Taylor’s script justice overall and the collection does not have any true “low moments”, and when you consider the amount of hands working on the art side of this series that is quite impressive.
Overall, the first volume of Injustice: Gods Among Us is an entertaining read that flows a lot like a video game. Intense action with some strong emotional cut scenes gives this volume the perfect feel. Taylor’s story grew stronger as the collection progressed and I can’t wait to see what he has in store for readers as this no-holds-barred series drives forward.
The Verdict: 8.5/10