So Mark Millar and Frank Quitely decided to get together and make some comics and to the surprise of absolutely no one with a pulse, it turns out that they can do this rather well. Jupiter’s Legacy incorporates political commentary on the generation gap, idealism and disillusionment, capitalism, and authority into an extraordinarily fascinating take on superheroes. It’s not flawless, but it definitely lives up to the hype behind it.
WRITTEN BY: Mark Millar
ART BY: Frank Quitely
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
RELEASE: April 24th, 2013
“Jupiter’s Legacy” has depth and then some. It’s a thought experiment concerning the generational gap between the idealistic, overtly heroic “greatest generation” and today’s hyper-commercialized, disaffected youth who exist in a culture which lacks the same certainty of purpose. These two sides are embodied in the world’s original superheroes and their offspring. The former received their powers on a mysterious island in 1929 and proceeded to defeat villains who would challenge them, while the latter use their powers to secure endorsement deals or to score drugs and groupies. While that may seem like too cliché a dichotomy, the younger characters are actually the more interesting; they have similar needs and doubts, lacking their parents’ iron-clad certainty on what is the right course for them to take.
In fact, the largest weakness of “Jupiter’s Legacy” is that the older heroes can sometimes come off as just functioning as vessels of disparate philosophical argument, rather than characters in and of themselves. Still, the political clash between Sheldon and Walter Sampson is one of the book’s high points. But perhaps nothing quite touches Frank Quitely’s artwork. Quitely is simply a master of his craft, and this issue is just another in a long line of reasons why. He’s impeccable when it comes to telling a story and making look absolutely gorgeous and powerful at the same time.
Millar and Quitely have touched on the nature of authority in superheroes when they worked on (the appropriately titled) “The Authority” a decade ago. With less creative restrictions this time around, things are looking up for “Jupiter’s Legacy.”
Reviewed by – GeorgeShunick