This book mixes real time character action with past tense narration akin to a history book. This is a bold step and it can take a while for your head to process this. The start also cuts very rapidly between scenes so you find yourself flipping backwards as lots of people and places are introduced.
It does settle down and the hook is so strong that you daren’t put it down. The history book style adds an air of authenticity backed up by real people and events. Hitler, Churchill and other notable figures all have speaking parts and they both look and feel as you think they should (or possibly as they actually were).
The art is good solid stuff. There are plenty of unusual and cinematic angles. The colouring is also strong. There is a lot of blood and guts as people are torn limb from limb so this definitely isn’t your Father’s war comic.
With a world war there are plenty of stories that can be told without the need for super heroes. This doesn’t skimp on the politics and definitely doesn’t glorify or simplify war however. Even with super powers the German’s aren’t reduced to cartoon characters and the whole idea feels very grounded with super-men become the new tanks and battleships.
There is quite a surprise toward the end of the book as Gillen shows you that the ‘good guys’ probably aren’t going to win and things won’t all turn out for the best.