Writer: Mark Millar
Artist: Frank Quitely
Colors: Sunny Gho
Letters/Design: Peter Doherty
Beautiful. That is the one word that came to mind when I closed Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5. It was a truly beautiful book at every level. Jupiter’s Legacy has been Mark Millar at his finest. The series has been a unique combination of a love letter to the Golden Age of superheroes as well as a commentary on what superheroes became in the post Authority and Ultimates world, which is fitting since it was those books that skyrocketed Millar to superstardom in the early ‘00s. Jupiter’s Legacy has also seen Frank Quitely reach new levels of his already tremendous art. I thought Quitley had peaked with All-Star Superman but I was wrong, this is Quitely at his absolute best. I’ve been in love when this series since it began and this was a brilliant conclusion to the second volume of the series.
Jupiter’s Legacy is at its heart a generational conflict as well as an ideological dispute over the role of the super being. The series began with six friends chartering a boat to a mysterious island (Think Lost or King Kong) and returning with superpowers in 1932. These original heroes then went on to have families, passing on abilities until there were hundreds of powered individuals. The main focus of the story then is the leader of these six friends, Sheldon Sampson who became a Superman analog known as the Utopian and his children Brandon and Chloe. Where the Utopian is altruistic and believes in using his powers to help society his children are selfish and more into the fringe benefits of their stardom, that is until life gets in their way. Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5 sees the conclusion of a conflict brewing since Jupiter’s Legacy #1 with the murder of the Utopian by his own son Brandon and the rebellion against Brandon’s despotic rule by his sister, her husband (a reformed super villain) and their son who desire a return to the altruistic hero rather then the drug addled pop star hero. Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5 was a delightful conclusion as Quitely’s art exemplified the power and awe these characters deserved and with trademark Millar violence the carnage jumps off the page but is fitting to the grand story being told. Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5 sees the concept of the Golden Age do-gooder hero and the nihilist self involved anti-hero of the ‘00s come to a head and it is a beautiful conclusion.
Yes Jupiter’s Legacy began in 2013 and it has taken its sweet time to conclude. Millar even inserted Jupiter’s Circle to the canon to explore the six original heroes in the ‘50s and ‘60s to give Quitely time to get ahead but Quitely is slow but it’s art well worth the wait. When Mark Millar wants to he can write some of the best super hero books on the market, with his modern sensibilities but obvious love for the Golden and Silver Age. Frank Quitely is a master of the comic book, with his heavy Kirby influence but with more detail and realism. I also have to give Sunny Gho credit since the colors on this title are spectacular and lend so much to the story. Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5 is a perfect conclusion to this story, and we are promised more with Jupiter’s Requiem in 2019- so look for that by 2025.
Verdict: Jupiter’s Legacy 2 #5 is an absolute stunning conclusion to the two part Jupiter’s Legacy story. If you are a fan of classic comic books with Golden Age virtues then Jupiter’s Legacy is the book for you.