A few weeks ago, I reviewed a collection of Superman comics and discussed the possibility and implications of Superman being a god on Earth. The Mighty explores this same possibility, though in a much darker way.
True, the superhero in this story isn’t actually Superman, but Alpha One, the World’s Only Superhero, but even so, the connection to Superman is evident. He has all of Superman’s powers, including heat vision. He’s relentlessly good and talks about justice and the needs of the people in casual conversation. Someone even refers to him as “more powerful than a locomotive.” It’s clear right from the start, Alpha One is Superman in everything but name. Which means he is a god, for better or for worse. The question is, what does that mean for the people he protects?
Alpha One has been at the superhero game since the early 1950s and has turned the process into a well-oiled machine. Post-heroics cleanup, investigations into open cases, and press are all handled by Team Omega, an organization funded by Alpha One merchandise sales for the sole purpose of liaising between the hero and the public. When the head of Team Omega is tragically killed, second-in-command Gabriel Cole takes over the job. Gabe has been preparing for this job his whole life. But, is it worth the risk? Is it really what he wants? Is there more to the job than he thought there would be?
This comic is very well written to grab your attention right from the beginning and keep you engaged all the way through. Some of the plot points have been done before, but the creative team still manages to make them feel fresh and new. The comic also touches on a few issues that haven’t been done as much, or are done in different and interesting ways, such as the bureaucratic aftermath of a superhero’s major victory, or the question, “What does a superhero do when he gets lonely?”
To be honest, I’ve gotten kind of burned out on superhero stories lately. It seems that every comic creator (or novelist, or webseries creator, or geeky artist in general) has created their own superhero world, with a different take on the implications of that world, and by extension, on the implications in today’s world of the stories we all grew up on. They’re great comics, but they all run together after a while and begin to sound the same. That being the case, these days a superhero comic has really got to be something special to make an impression on me. The Mighty is something special. It was fun, unique, and really stood out from other superhero stories I’ve read. This one is definitely worth reading.