You may not know much about Mister Miracle – and that’s OK. He’s a fairly obscure DC Comics character that came to (relative) prominence via his inclusion in the mid 1980’s version of the Justice League.
The Justice League with all of the “Bwah-ha-ha’s”, the Oreo cookies, and the famous “one punch” scene.
But Mister Miracle has a long and storied Silver Age to Bronze Age of comic book history.
Most importantly, he was created by the legendary Jack Kirby in 1971 when the King crossed the aisle and made his way from Marvel Comics to arch rival DC Comics. He brought with him a whole host of creative ideas, Mister Miracle being one of them, firmly entrenched in Kirby’s Fourth World magnum opus story-line. (That’s the one with the New Gods, New Genesis, Apokolips and Darkseid.)
Really, Mister Miracle’s story is a story that is Shakespearean in nature.
In order to cement a truce between the two dueling worlds of good natured New Genesis and evil Apokolips, Highfather exchanges his beloved son, Scott Free, with the son of his enemy, Darkseid.
The new son of evil incarnate, Free is raised on Apokolips, a world of immoral intent, malicious behaviour and absolute torture. How can one free themselves from a predetermined destiny of life-long suffering?
Only the world’s greatest escape artist, Mister Miracle, can!
Last year, acclaimed writer and artist, Tom King and Mitch Gerads, gave us a new, miraculous Mister Miracle tale: a twelve issue monthly series that has resonated with readers since the release of the very first issue.
We talked about it here…and the series did not disappoint.
And to think, it all started with the words “Darkseid is…”
Written By: Tom King
Illustrated By: Mitch Gerads
Published By: DC Comics
“Darkseid is…” has since become a bit of a comic book meme. But that just shows you the power and significance of the series that birthed it. It became a running thought in the series – what are all the things that Darkseid, Scott Free’s sort-of father, could be?
Mister Miracle, the collected hardcover tale, tells the story of Scott Free in a happy, idyllic life with his wife Big Barda (also an escapee of Apokolips). He’s a well-regarded superhero and a world sensation as a Houdini-esque escape artist. You’d think he had it all.
He’s escaped his unescapable life on Apokolips.
He’s escaped numerous, traps snares and villains and endings.
But he’s never escaped his own inescapable death.
To find out if he can do it, Mister Miracle is going to have to kill himself.
King and Gerads pull back the showman’s mask. The underlying face of regular day Scott Free is vastly different than his public persona. And it’s not just the mask of the character that is stripped away. Mister Miracle also strips away and rebuilds the comic book medium and how writers and artists can tell stories within in.
It’s a masterful and very personal work, reaching for the greatness of the stories like Grant Morrison’s Animal Man and Alan Moore’s Watchmen.
It’s a brilliant book.
It’s something everyone should read.
It’s something you should escape into.
Escape humdrum and make the run today to your local comic book store today and pick up the hardcover compilation of Mister Miracle.
It’s a literary miracle that you’ll be happy to have experienced!