Story: What happens when a would-be world conqueror actually succeeds? An armored military genius named Golgoth is about to find out, as only a small corner of the globe sits outside of his empire. That empire is far from peaceful; not only is a rebellion brewing, but Golgothâ€™s own inner circle is far from trustworthy. Golgoth keeps their ambitions in check through his control of Eucharist, a highly addictive drug. The source of Eucharist is a closely guarded secret, but Golgoth has surrounded himself with men and women who will go to any length to achieve their ends . . . how long can the secrets last?
Review: “Empire” was originally meant to be an ongoing series from the late and lamented Gorilla Comics imprint. Gorilla shut down after only two issues were printed â€“ and if you can ever get Mark Waid to tell you that story at a convention, go for it â€“ but DC stepped in to finish off the first arc as a miniseries. This book definitely concludes with the feeling that there is more to the story, and sadly Waid and Kitson have not gotten around to telling it yet. Thatâ€™s a shame because Waid really let loose here, and it seems he had a lot of fun channeling his inner bad guy. The world-conquering is really backdrop for the soap opera drama of Golgothâ€™s family and inner circle, and Waid brings his usual skill with dialogue and characterization to bear. Since this is an original property, thereâ€™s no need to hit the reset button, or to tone down any edges to keep audience sympathies. (In fact, on more than one occasion, Waid seems set to introduce a sympathetic character, and then proceeds to pull the rug out from under us.)
I could go on and on about the artwork of Barry Kitson and company, but I already did that in 2001 and 2003 over at Not News. Suffice it to say that I really like Kitsonâ€™s clean lines and detailed drawing. He has some distinctive design quirks that show up in his near-future technology and costumes, but by my lights that just adds a bit of personality to the work.
For a comic about a world-conquering possible madman, this book is a very enjoyable read. Check it out.
Writers: Mark Waid and Barry Kitson
Penciller: Barry Kitson
Inker: James Pascoe
Publisher: DC Comics