Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Lazarus Planet: Revenge of the Gods #3 Review


The Gods Must Be Crazy   

Written by: G. Willow Wilson
Art by: Emanuela Lupacchino, Cian Tormey, Raül Fernandez
Colors by: Jordie Bellaire
Letters by: Pat Brosseau
Cover art by: Guillem March
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: April 11, 2023

Lazarus Planet: Revenge of the Gods #3 finds the battle heating up on two fronts. Billy Batson receives some unexpected help to escape his Olympian prison, and Wonder Woman takes up arms in Washington D.C.
Is It Good?

Lazarus Planet: Revenge of the Gods #3 stumbles a bit for one of the last vestiges (in name only) of the Lazarus Planet event. Nothing is inherently wrong with this issue, but it largely serves as a transition point. In other words, the characters are moved into place for the finale, so not a lot of story substance takes place.

When last we left Wonder Woman and Shazam, Shazam's powers were nearly drained away by the Wizard, and Wonder Woman sneakily escaped confinement with the help of Hecate and an Asgardian squirrel(?). Now, Hecate and Yara Flor step in to free Shazam from his jail cell while Wonder Woman's allies gather to fight against the Army of Olympus near the Washington Monument.

Oh, and the hoodie guy's identity is revealed. It's a surprise, but not a shocking surprise, if that makes sense. Without spoiling it, think about which god-like character is most prevalent in Wonder Woman's history, and you'll probably guess who it is.

What's great about this issue? It feels like all the characters are moving toward a specific moment. Wilson doesn't infuse the story with anything resembling momentum, but the fellowship is starting to gel. There's some action, which looks great, and the character designs (including Wonder Woman's "god" armor) are pretty cool.

Check out our Video Review of Lazarus Planet: Revenge of the Gods #3

What's not great about this issue? For the penultimate issue in a 4-part story, there's a distinct lack of momentum and emotional energy. The dialog, in spots, is downright wooden. Strangely, the worst dialog comes from Wonder Woman during her most vulnerable moments. Billy Batson's incessant self-berating over how much worse of a hero he is compared to Mary is irritating and unnecessary. And overall, the conflict feels small because you don't see how the gods' attack affects the world.

Regarding the art, it's great. Despite the extra help on pencils/inks (always a yellow flag), the quality of art is excellent. The lines are clean, the coloring pops, and the action is attention-grabbing.

And then there's the backup...

Divine Intervention

An army of the undead invades the shore of Themyscira, leading to a battle between Nubia's Amazonian army and Hades's unending zombie hordes.

Sounds fantastic, right? The premise is incredible, but the execution is flatly paced and downright dull. It reads like a low-cost, off-off-off Broadway play with overly flowery dialog, wooden character acting, and mediocre art. This backup would be better received if some revelation or big surprise popped up to enhance the main story, but the significant development here (some of the gods are not on board with the invasion) falls far short of interesting.

About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.

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Bits and Pieces:

Lazarus Planet: Revenge of the Gods #3 is a setup issue that moves the players into position for the big finale. Nothing new or exciting in this issue that you didn't already know, so it's a serviceable addition to the arc. Also, the backup is dull and pointless.


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