WAR IS COMING! is the tag line for American Gods : Shadows, which is one of the newest titles for the powerhouse Dark Horse. The cover alone shows us the style of our gladiator looking title, written by Neil Gaiman with the art style of P. Craig Russell. Mixing a lot of the old history of our world with the new Gods that people tend to follow makes this comic a battle among Gods who use men to fight for them.
We get introduced to Shadow Moon, a prisoner who spends his time working out, teaching himself sleight of hand, and worrying about how his wife is doing. He seems glad he was caught for his crimes, as he mentions no longer needing to worry about the when. When would he be caught, when would life change, and what would happen if he took things too far. Shadow was also counting down the days until the portal opened, allowing him to escape this prison and be reunited with his loved ones. The writing did make it seem like maybe it was a pipe dream, and Shadow was just trying to justify the wait for release, but he’s almost fulfilled his time.
Three years behind bars, and Shadow talks about how he made a stupid mistake that he regrets. Glad his wife stuck with him, and got everything back on track for his release. His old job waiting on him, a beautiful wife wanting to hold him again, and a life that he had to leave seemingly staying there waiting. Like all good stories, this is the part where his world begins to fall apart. I won’t go into detail, as that is for you to read, but it is definitely the point of no return for almost any man. Especially one who has already been pushed to the edge and dropped.
How does Shadow handle this new life, and the new consequences that will come with it? How does he survive life outside of the prison walls? You’ll need to read it to find out!
The writing in this story is descriptive, possibly a little overwritten in points, but overall a fresh take on the novel it is based on. Mixed with the very pencil style art that it is paired with it tells an extremely open concept of story. I am excited to see how well this story tells the same novel we’ve all read or at least heard of, but I do hope it does so in just as interesting of a manner.
RECOMMENDATION – Anyone who enjoys a redemption’s story, and apocalypse style story, or a story including a lot of emotion will find this to their liking. It makes you think, feel, and put yourself into the shackles of our main character all at once.
Remember to ask the boys in store to add this run to your file, or at least the first issue for you to judge it on your own. I’d hate you to miss out on a great story.