Sean Murphy’s creator-owned series from Vertigo Comics takes its next big leap this month with the fourth issue. Chris, the J2 Project’s cloned version of Jesus Christ, has realized all that’s been kept from him while living on his reality show island fortress. With the help of his friends, Chris discovers history, evolution, and punk rock music. The results of which will change his life, and the world, forever.
Punk Rock Jesus #4 throws the series into overdrive. Not only does the main character make some very bold statements about religion, but we also get to see the violent aftermath of religious extremists in Murphy’s imaginary world.
Chris is turned into the main focus of the story in this issue. He had always been a major part of the story, but his mother Gwen and his bodyguard Thomas had always taken more of the limelight. Chris is angry, confused, and ready to lash out at the world. It really comes through in the writing and makes each page as riveting as the last.
The black and white artwork continues to be stunning. Some people have complained that this series should be in color, but the black and white aspect really gives it a punk rock feel.
The themes of this book are very mature. It’s not afraid to put the subject of religion on debate, or expose flaws in either side of the argument. It’s a series that isn’t afraid to stick its neck out and deserves to be rewarded for it.
Murphy’s first venture into a solo Vertigo series is shaping up to be a huge success. You’ll want to jump on this series before it ends, or at least pick up the collection as soon as it’s finished.