Minerva’s secret is out, but things are about to get so much worse…  Your Major Spoilers review of The Wicked + The Divine #43 awaits!

THE WICKED + THE DIVINE #43

Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Jamie McKelvie
Colorist: Matt Wilson
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Editor: Chrissy Williams
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: April 24, 2019

Previously in The Wicked + The Divine: After discovering that the threat of the Great Darkness was entirely made up by Ananke to manipulate them, the remaining gods gather to face Minerva and her remaining servants for the fate of EVERYTHING…  especially them.  Laura, who was once Persephone, has a plan, but still hasn’t quite revealed all the details to her remaining associates.

YOU DON’T WANT TO READ THIS IF YOU’RE NOT CAUGHT UP

Minerva has gone to ground at Valhalla, her castle in London, surrounding the enclave with a dozen of Woden’s Valkyries and several “new” “gods” to protect her from Laura and her ragtag group of survivors (Baal, Inanna, Mimir, Lucifer, Dionysius, Urdr and Tara, nearly any and all of whom could be surprising to anyone who missed an issue.)  There is a MASSIVE super-fight which, hilariously, is shown for exactly one page before things change once again.  It’s very amusing to see so little space given to that, especially when given that we finally get to see Minerva’s story from her point of view, thanks to a little help from Laura.  The parallels of WicDiv godhood to performing have never been clearer than in this issue, as one of the Valkyries screams that she’s ‘quitting the band’ and Minerva’s story is described as (and all about) storytelling.  It’s Cassandra/Urdr who figures out how it all has to end, with the others following suit…

…all but one, who suddenly betrays them all at the end.

GAINING SPEED TOWARDS THE END OF THE WORLD

Oh.  My. Gawd.  Even for a story that revels in paradigm-breaking revelations, this issue’s ending is a big one.  With only two issues to go, this story is nearing its end, but Gillen, McKelvie and company clearly aren’t done surprising us.  Perhaps the biggest surprise, though, is the amount of humanity and empathy generated for MInerva, who is not only a mass-murderer on a literally unprecedented scale, but the overarching villain of the piece.  And yet, her “duet” with Laura is both touching and sweet, and the creators make it clear how easy it was for her to travel from devoted sister 6,000 years ago to monster today.  I’m a firm believer that Jamie McKelvie can do no wrong artistically, but this issue ups that ante dramatically, from the flashbacks to the fight sequence to the sheer emotion on the page as Urdr finally sets her Norns free.  And the final page reveal is killer, managing to make perfect sense while being totally unexpected.

BOTTOM LINE: BUY IT, Y’ALL

As a fan of WicDiv (we fans call it WicDiv, guys) from the very beginning, I’ve been trying to make it clear how good this book is month after month.  That said, even I was impressed with The Wicked + The Divine #43, thanks to excellent art and story, some near-perfect character moments and yet another successful giant swerve, earning a dead solid 5 out of 5 stars overall.  You still have two issues to get on board, Faithful Spoilerites!


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THE WICKED + THE DIVINE #43

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WHOA

Another big surprise in another incredible issue of comics/music criticism/group therapy. If you don't read this, you're missing out, friends.

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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.

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