Jeff Lemire’s Colonel Weird: Cosmagog, an extension of the Black Hammer universe, was made all the more enjoyable by the inclusion of one of my favorite artists, Tyler Crook. His painterly skills create a lush universe for the larger-than-life characters like Anti-God which is a breathtaking monstrosity under his care. His earthy palette follows Weird through his life, bouncing around from one time period to another as he tries to find the missing piece to a comic puzzle that leaves him vulnerable to his own madness. How would you react to knowing how everything was supposed to work out, but knowing that you had to make sure it all happened, the good and the bad.
The mini-series has been more of a tone poem and presents – along with the other recent Black Hammer additions – a shift in tone. While the main series was running, the additional titles all had the air of melancholy, of things left unsaid and undone. It was difficult not to exit a story without a bittersweet sting. Now, there’s a sense of hope that permeates the final pages of this series and in the concurrently running Barbalien. There is a sense that if we fight to make thing right, we will succeed. The resolution that Weird finds at the end of issue four made complete sense, but when we’re lost in the shuffle of our own anxieties and depression – which Weird has a lot of – even the easy answers can be elusive.
This is a beautiful series and represents why #StoriesMatter. Being different isn’t a fault, even though it can feel like it sometimes. It can make us feel alone, but we have family if we’re willing to see it, if we don’t forget that. The one theme that has remained true over the course of all of Black Hammer is the need for that family, whether chosen or not.
The world of Black Hammer is absolutely worth diving into, and Colonel Weird: Cosmagog is no exception.
I keep wondering when this will lead back into the main story… maybe we’re part of it, and we just don’t know it yet!
Also, kudos to the cover design and the apology that’s scratched into the bottom of the image.
Creative Team: Jeff Lemire (writer), Tyler Crook (art and letters), Daniel Chabon (editor), Chuck Howitt (Assistant Editor), Ethan Kimberling (designer), Josie Christensen (digital art technician)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
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