By Mike Carey & various
(Vertigo) ISBN 1-84576-23811-X
The war of Heaven is going badly for all concerned. God has vanished and, despite the machinations of each being of power, a rank outsider has assumed his position and responsibilities. Many disparate factions have aligned and realigned and final battle lines have been drawn. When the battle for everything begins it will affect all reality — and not all the combatants expect, or even plan, to survive.
The sides broadly coalesce into Lilith (the woman Adam and God replaced with Eve – and look how well that turned out!) and every creature that feels wronged or slighted by Heaven, ranged against the Host of Angels and Powers besieged in their Silver City. The first story, The Eighth Sin (issue #55 of the monthly comic), by Carey and artist Marc Hempel, concentrates on events in Hell as the Angels caretaking the fell domain cede control to medieval philosopher Christopher Rudd. Following is the eponymous Crux (issues #56-57), with art from Peter Gross and Ryan Kelly as Lilith recounts her meeting with a band of sinister beings at the fringes of creation and what she sacrificed to join their alliance to destroy Heaven.
The Yahweh Dance (drawn by Ronald Wimberly, from #58) depicts the first stumbling steps of the Replacement Creator and the amount of guidance one can honestly expect from the arch-rebel Lucifer. Gross and Kelly return to end the volume with The Breach (issues #59-61). As the preparations for all-out war accelerate and the implications are felt throughout the universe by all of the truly huge cast that populate this epic, the human Jill Presto must reach some accommodation with the supernatural force in her womb that intends to be born before it kills her — or she it.
Lucifer is a true epic that reaches beyond the cosmos by concentrating on the actions of small characters as well as mighty forces. It does the work no favours to parcel it up into broken portions, even if those portions are entire Graphic Novels.
Read in one continuous flow, it becomes a masterpiece.
© 2006 DC Comics. All Rights Reserved.