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New Gods

Unearthed: New Gods #3 Part 2

We return after a short hiatus to our story, already in progress!

Willie Walker takes the hand of the Black Racer… he can move again! He speaks! But what happens to the Black Racer himself?

Here’s the thing about drawing, too. As you know, I’m writing and drawing the other feature here on Comics Breakdown, Marvel Retold. I’m not a great artist, but I can’t afford to hire someone else to draw the comic for me.

And if I drew hands like the hands in this panel, I’d think they were terrible. But because it’s Kirby, it’s fine. Beh.

The Black Racer’s helmet kind of looks like a trash can. I’m just sayin’.

Willie Walker has BECOME the Black Racer! Has this happened before? Is it… THE WAY? We may never know.

What’s that beatnik doing in the background?

And as I always say, look at that bomb. It’s complete nonsense, but holy rats, it looks awesome.

There’s more power in this one panel than in an entire issue of any modern comic.

And again, there’s an element of Shakespeare in Kirby’s writing. The way the Black Racer goads Sugar-Man is downright chilling.

What exactly IS the Black Racer’s role? We met him in the last issue hunting Lightray, who we assume is a “good guy”. But here he’s foiling the plans of Inter-gang, who are “bad guys”. But he’s also got a sense of the theatrical here; he could easily have just slain Sugar-Man outright, but he does it this way instead.

And for the love of Grud, why is he SKIING THEMED?

Why does Mother Box have a DEATH signal? She’s an instrument of life! Kirby drums this into us all the time. But rather than just writing it off as lazy writing, I’m convinced that the cosmology of the New Gods stuff is so ingrained in Kirby’s psyche that he can’t explain its complete workings, even to himself.

I just don’t get this outfit. He’s the personification of death itself and here he’s a gaudy, armor-clad SKIIER. Oh, Kirby, you nut, we hardly knew ye.

Here he hints at a continuum of Black Racers, each embodied in a different host.

The weird thing is, the Black Racer doesn’t really make too many other appearances. It’s almost as though Kirby couldn’t find another way to introduce this character in any other comic, so he put him in the New Gods. Or maybe Kirby just wanted to put a peculiar stamp on this series, to make it feel like nothing else.

It’s a weird, cosmic superhero tale, complete with a secret identity and everything.

And I also admire Kirby’s lack of common denominator writing when it comes to Black people. Sugar-Man had a street-level way of speaking, but Willie’s sister and her husband don’t. But he doesn’t make a big deal of it, either. And believe me, that kinda stuff was common in comics of the era.

It’s such a cheap ploy, but I LOVE this kinda stuff! Fourth wall breaking action from Kirby’s Fourth World series!

And just to tide us all over until the next New Gods issue, here we have a pin-up of the lovely Kalibak. Believe me, y’all, there’s some awesome stuff coming up with this dude! Stay tuned for that, and join us here on Wednesday for an all-new title!

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