The Wicked Righteous #2
Written by: Terry Mayo
Art by: Lucas Romero and Christopher Hall
Published by: Alterna Comics

I’m going to compare The Wicked Righteous to Showtime’s TV series Jeremiah for a moment (which was based on Hermann Huppen’s comic of the same name which is probably based on some other post apocalyptic book somewhere). Jeremiah saw everyone over the age of thirteen die in a plague and followed the survivors of the plague years later as they traversed a decaying America.

The Wicked Righteous seems to have some very similar themes. A sickness has killed lots of people. Kids are now walking around trying to survive. They get to walk around with guns which I would think would be pretty cool when you are thirteen. Except when you shoot someone and then have to deal with it emotionally. Wicked Righteous didn’t kill off all the adults as there are still some running around with these kids.

Ish 2 continues to follow Matt and Lucas – young brothers who just survived a shootout trying to save a beautiful young girl named JC. Traveling with Uncle Abe, their butts just got saved by an uber-badass man named Cross. You would think that Cross may be some good hearted samaritan with a rifle but some well placed foreshadowing makes the reader question just how good Cross may be.

Lucas was shot down but survived thanks to a flak jacket. He had yet to wake up (the impact of being shot knocked him out) so the group picked him up and found a place to hide.  Why?   The sinister street gangs who have nothing better to do than hunt JC down are still looking for her. Once Lucas awakens? Time to attempt an escape.

This book has a very interesting dichotomy. It seems that this plague has just occurred in the past few years so these characters are just at the beginning of what is probably the end of the world as they know it. They aren’t out in the world to make friends. Things have obviously broken down and this ragged crew has no clue who they can trust. I like the dynamic of kids and adults running around with guns together killing anyone who seems to want to hurt them.

The title of the book is meant to be biblical (To quote Psalms “The wicked lie in wait for the righteous, intent on putting them to death.”…or something like that) which I interpret as good people doing bad things to survive. It’s usually the way it is in a world falling apart.  As for a character called JC, I have no clue if it is supposed to invoke another biblical reference (Jesus Christ) or if it is just her initials (Jane Curtin).

I talked about how this book reminded me of Jeremiah – now I’ll talk on how writer Terry Mayo gives his own twist. It’s always a powerful choice to have a book where you turn kids into killers. Now these kids aren’t killers in that they are going out on a rampage, but they are doing what they can to survive. There are adults here but really the brothers can truly rely on each other. What would you do to survive? There’s also drama here that’s inter-twisted with the violence during issue two. There’s a beautiful girl that was rescued and now while they are being hunted there’s almost like a cute moment between the kids. I really dug that.

I really love artist Lucas Romero’s art style – I’m not sure saying that his style reminds me of Humberto Ramos mixed with Trent Kaniuga does him justice. Looking at these panels you see a world torn apart but you are always drawn to characters Romero is drawing. He has a great eye and a magnificent hand. He makes The Wicked Righteous look stunning. Romero is drawing a book full of cursing and violence yet he can capture that balance of Mayo’s quieter moments as well.

I wonder where this series is going and I’m going to be damn happy to continue reading so I can find out.

RANK: A-

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