ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Devil’s Reign: Omega #1,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Devil’s Reign Omega #1 - But Why Tho

Devil’s Reign: Omega #1 is published by Marvel Comics and features three stories by different creators. The first story is titled “Fall and Rise,” written by Chip Zdarsky, art by Rafael de Latorre, colours by Federico Blee, and letters by Clayton Cowles. The second story is titled “Mayor For Hire,” written by Rodney Barnes, art by Guillermo Sanna, colours by Dijjo Lima and letters by Cowles. The third story is titled “Cleaning House,” written by Jim Zub, art by Luciano Vecchio, colours by Carlos Lopez and Java Tartaglia and letters by Cowles.

In “Fall and Rise,” the key heroes of Devil’s Reign search for Kingpin whilst there is a funeral for Matt Murdock and Daredevil decides on his next steps. In “Mayor for Hire” Luke Cage sets up for his first day as the new Mayor of New York City. And in “Cleaning House,” Cage tries to deal with the still pertinent issue of the Thunderbolts.

The plots of all three issues have a similar feel to them. All three are like bridges between stories, wrapping up Devil’s Reign and leading into several new dawns and separate series. Much of what happened in the last two issues of the event was in a blur, the emotions of the situation powerful but possibly overtaken by how much was going on. So for this follow-up issue to explain where all the characters are and where they are going is both informative and interesting. The directions are clear but full of possibilities, exciting for the start of the new series about to begin. 

“Fall and Rise” may be the most emotionally driven tale, due to the presence of the funeral. It is a heavy story, but largely due to the deception within it. It creates an uneasy feeling, already creating conflict before the story begins. The other two stories don’t have the same power, but are very enjoyable nonetheless. They have an action-packed core and a real sense of foundations being built.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of Devil’s Reign: Omega #1 was how much it revolved around one character, and not the character I was expecting. All three stories are centred heavily around Luke Cage, now the mayor of the city. This is not the driving force of “Fall and Rise,” although the end of the story starts to shift in that direction. But the other two parts show what he is planning and where he has come from to get there. All three writers create a brilliant script for him, where his staunch ideals and passion for helping people are at the forefront of the book. This is helpful, as personally, I don’t think the fact that his ascendency to the mayor was very prominent in the main comic.

As for Daredevil, he practically has a cameo role in the first story. He is clearly still suffering from what he went through and the guilt is still suffocating him. The journey he is about to go on is mysterious and foreboding. Although it should be mentioned that the summing up of his life story that is implemented in that part of the book misses quite a few important points out. Not mentioning his role as an Avenger is fine, that’s just a team, but not including his child at all felt like a big occlusion.

The art between the three stories in this comic is varied and fantastic throughout. “Fall and Rise” is incredibly picturesque—important for a poignant and emotional story. The large landscape panels depicting the city and the church are simply stunning, de Latorre providing intricate and exquisite detail. The facial expressions are superb for what is being attempted in the storytelling. Some of the mourners present know that something isn’t right, while others are genuinely distraught. It shows just how much can be told simply through the art without needing dialogue.

“Cleaning House” is a much more fast-paced and action-packed tale, which Vecchio accomplishes brilliantly. As Cage and a guest star battle leftover Thunderbolts. The battle is entertaining to read and the large proportions give a slight cartoon quality to this chapter of the book. In “Mayor for Hire,” it is another drastic difference in the art style. Here the inking is very heavy, with extremely thick line weights. This makes the story incredibly atmospheric. This is crucial for a chapter that is focused on reflection.

This is a very colourful book. There is a general vibrancy throughout the stories. In “Cleaning House”, the lasers being fired and Cage’s signature yellow shirt lead to the eyes darting all over the page. In contrast, “Fall and Rise” tends to have one incredibly rich or distinct colour per pane, which draws the focus. The best example of this is the brilliant red that covers both Daredevils. The lettering is consistently excellent in the entire comic.

Devil’s Reign: Omega #1 is a brilliant closing issue. This is partly due to the fact that the creators understand how to transition between the stories. It adequately closes out the big event, allowing the pivotal moments to be wound down with poignant writing yet with a slight twist in the tale. This is not interrupted and is really well orchestrated. But then there is this reset and an escalation of excitement for Cage’s tenure as mayor. For the amazing journey that this character has been through, to finally end at such a high point, it deserves this spotlight.

Devil’s Reign: Omega #1 is available where comics are sold.


Devil’s Reign: Omega #1
4.5

TL;DR

Devil’s Reign: Omega #1 is a brilliant closing issue. This is partly due to the fact that the creators understand how to transition between the stories. It adequately closes out the big event, allowing the pivotal moments to be wound down with poignant writing yet with a slight twist in the tale. This is not interrupted and is really well orchestrated. But then there is this reset and an escalation of excitement for Cage’s tenure as mayor. For the amazing journey that this character has been through, to finally end at such a high point, it deserves this spotlight.