Divinity II #3 finds us in the wake of Abram and Myshka’s first encounter back on Earth, and picks up from the cliffhanger ending of the last issue, which saw Myshka attempting to alter the past.
Matt Kindt continues to showcase his intelligent storytelling by using this battle between two god-like beings to effectively sideline Earth’s most powerful heroes. Unity and MI-6 are forced to watch in awe as Abram and Myshka literally chase each other through time. What commences is a very surreal and cerebral journey through the lives of these cosmonauts that further cements this tale as one of Abram’s humanity and love, set against Myshka’s ideology and loyalty. The conflict between these two is made all the more tragic by the fact that there might not be anyone else like them in all of reality, yet they find themselves as enemies.
It’s a good thing there is plenty of solid and poignant dialogue to complement what is essentially an issue where characters stand in, or run through various backgrounds while yelling at each other. Kindt always manages to get the point across while never getting too verbose, each page maintaining a balance of text and art, never feeling too cluttered or over-expository. The pinnacle of this is a scene in which Abram attempts to explain to Myshka the concept that in the Valiant Universe, the past is unchangeable in any meaningful way. Which, in some way, could be an allegory for our own inability to change our past.
So how does it all look? The combined artistic efforts of Trevor Hairsine, Ryan Winn, and David Baron do a service to this book, and picturing a different direction in the art fitting this story is difficult. The pencil work manages to evoke a sense of dynamism and variety as each page or two leads us through different locales, from snow filled forests, to offices of recognizable politicians, even to the Berlin Wall. This is very much a comic in motion, which helps to offset the focus on dialogue over physicality, especially compared to the extremely physical previous issue. Highlights include a scene early on which features ten vertical panels which each contain a different moment in time as Myshka chases Abram through them. Then there is a truly beautiful two-page spread that is laid out to look like pages of a book being flipped through.
David Baron does an admirable job of showing restraint and displays a grasp of color contrast worth noting. During the trek through time, the colors of background objects remain muted in contrast to the brighter cardinal colors on our cosmonauts’ space suits. It really helps to pull the attention onto the characters. A notable exception is the vivid coloring of planets and stars during a panel set in space, seeming to highlight the displacement of Abram and Myshka from no longer belonging to the terrestrial world as much as the cosmic vastness they ventured into so long ago.
Divinity II #3 is the tipping point of the sequel series, in which it finally lives up to the potential of the original series. The creative team is firing on all cylinders and should be expected to deliver going into the final issue, and beyond into the already announced Divinity III. This reviewer would recommend Divinity to fans of Valiant and newcomers alike.
- Insightful and thoughtful storytelling
- Dynamic and energetic art
- Easy to follow without prior exposure to Valiant
- Limited connection to mainstream Valiant events could alienate die-hard fans