This week, we’re journeying to the Fourth World to talk about Jack Kirby’s The Forever People #3, which sees radical extremist Glorious Godfrey preaching the good word of Anti-Life, and helping the brainwashed masses justify their hatred, all in service of Darkseid.
When Jack Kirby came to DC Comics, darkness followed after him. He arrived ready to build his own mythology, the interlocking Fourth World, a saga of gods locked in an eternal interplanetary war, with Earth caught in the middle.
And Kirby wasted no time introducing the villain of that saga, a gray-skinned god of evil named Darkseid. What Kirby didn't see coming was that he'd created such a great villain that he would grow larger than Kirby's saga and become perhaps the most important villain of the DC Universe.
Sometimes, amazing things can come out of casual conversations. That's what happened this weekend when Luke Herr was plotting out an RPG campaign based around the idea of retelling Jack Kirby's classic Fourth World saga as a western, full of gun-slinging cowboys and steam-powered parademons battling it out in a town called Hope, and artist Kyle Latino stepped up to do some redesigns for what they began calling "The 4th West."
Q: Do you think Darkseid deserves to be considered the ultimate bad guy of the DC Universe? What are his achievements? -- @Lionel_Leal
A: I don't want to turn this into "Ask Chris About Jack Kirby's Fourth World" --- as opposed to my usual strategy of spending an entire week talking about the moral significance of Batman's utility belt or whatever --- but over the last few years, Darkseid has been a more prominent fixture of the DC Universe than any other time in his forty-year history. I think it probably started with how he was treated on Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League, but just in the past three years we've seen him as the villain that launched the New 52, and the villain who's probably going to show up in a movie about the Justice League at some point. So with all due respect, LL, it's not really a matter of "Darkseid deserves."
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn't enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here's The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he dives into comics history to explain why you're wrong and he's right.
This week, a viewer writes in with a question about where to start with the King of Comics, Jack Kirby. With a career that spanned six decades and a masterpiece (or three) in every era, the sheer amount of work that Kirby produced can be daunting for a new reader. Fortunately, we've got some suggestions.
You hear it all the time: "Jack Kirby is the King of Comics." "Jack 'King' Kirby." "Marvel's House of Ideas is The House That Jack Built." Most people, comics critics and the like, usually leave it there...