Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Mystery Babylon

 “And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be freed from his prison.” – The Book of Revelation

An evil cult and a one thousand year old prophecy…
A demon who has sworn to keep the world safe…
…and her only help is from an air-headed priest and a guy named Judas.
What could possibly go wrong?

The Whore of Babylon had one job, free Satan from his 1,000 year imprisonment. She is one of the most powerful demons. She can return ultimate evil to a world that survived the biblical apocalypse. But she really doesn’t want to. And she just can’t seem to get passed that. She just wants to be left alone. I’d call her a reluctant hero, but the great Mystery Babylon, aka Kick Girl, wouldn’t even want to be called that. She has enough on her mind and enough regret to last several lifetimes. The fact that she is a demon and cannot die just makes her problems even worse. She would also be more proactive in preventing the return of ultimate evil, she just lost the map to the gates of hell.

So… Enter a naive priest, Zero, who was given a vision of the location and made a map…. That looks like a child drew it.

Add in a cult that worships Kick Girl as a demonic savior...

...and Crusaders who want her dead.

Oh, she is also aided by a guy named Judas. Because in a biblical tale, of course his name would be Judas.

Basically, chaos ensues.

Mystery Babylon is a unique idea. Take a story from the darkest chapter of the Bible, and turn it into a humorous tale in a light anime style. It could go very wrong and just seem in poor taste. But artist/writer Val Hochberg pulls it off. It's a funny series.

I met Val at the 2014 Alamo City Comic Con. Which brings me to one of the best things about a convention, if you take the time to look, you can find great comics from independent writers and artists. I came across Val’s booth and the great art and bright colors caught my eye. And then the humor and the writing got me hooked. It's a good series. More importantly, it's good, and it's original. The fact that the story does not take itself seriously is a great contrast to the source material. Also worth note, I would call this an all ages read. Well, maybe the little ones won't get it, but the humor isn't crude, there isn't foul language, and there is no bloody violence. It's just a fun action saga that is well written. There is an arc to Mystery Babylon that will finish at some point. Val has an idea of how it will all end (her husband shakes his head and mouths the word "no" as she answered my question)  but is not sure when that will be. So this ride will go one for a while. I hope I run into Val and her husband again at a con. They are good people.

As of this article, I have only read Chapters 1 and 2 of the Mystery Babylon saga. Both are available as trade paperbacks online through the, where you can also read the entire series, which is now on Chapter 4. Val also has Chapters 1 and 2 at her convention booth.

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