Words, art, and letters by Dan Membiela
Published by Band of Bards
“A young woman’s mission of mercy turns deadly as she learns her role in the oppression of those she meant to aid. This 44-pg. oversized comic will appeal to fans of social science fiction like Stephen King’s The Long Walk, Miller/Gibbons’ Martha Washington series, or Moore/Lloyd’s V for Vendetta.”
I’ll admit that this comic definitely did not hook me with the first page or even the first couple of pages. I say this so you know to give this comic a chance. Before you know it, any reservations held from the initial reading will drop away quickly as you fall into this story and the message behind it. My main reservation starting out was the art style employed for this comic. The black-and-white style is very minimalistic, but the story is so rich and powerful, that it does not matter.
Under God is a brutal and unflinching look at society if the far right of the country won out and imposed their style of faith and governance on us all. Dan Membiela does an excellent job crafting a story with a significant impact in its message. The story dives into what oppressive kindness could look like from a religious-based government in the united states. One person who grew up into that government discovers after being kidnapped, all is not as it seems.
The character growth that happens in this one-shot is amazing as our main character, Samantha, is confronted by realities that she never expected to find in this New America, outside the gates of God’s people. Watching this character come to terms with reality and at first struggle with this new information about her captors, especially since they also believed in God, but then grow and become a better person was quite a journey.
As hinted at before I am not much a fan of the art style, but that does not mean the art is bad at all. There are several scenes where I quite enjoy it. However, I do believe this art works well for the story as it allows the reader to really focus on who a character is more so than the color of their skin or what is happening in the background. I had a blast reading through this comic multiple times and noticing new things about the characters.
The comic is oversized with 44 pages of comic content, plus chapter break pages and more which is the right amount to sufficiently pace this story and give the reader the overarching message, without beleaguering the point and losing focus. This is a great comic for fans of democracy and those not in favor of overthrowing the government with a religious regime.
Under God was previously funded on Zoop and will be released from Band of Bards in May.
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