Graphic Novel Review: Eight Billion Genies by Charles Soule and Ryan Browne

Eight Billion Genies by Charles Soule and Ryan Browne. Image, 2023. 9781534323537. Publisher’s Rating: Mature Readers. Contains #1 – 8. Includes an extensive cover gallery, The Secret History of…, sketches, and the behind-the-scenes guide to issue 1 including a list of Easter eggs.

It’s an ordinary day at the Lampwick Bar and Grill in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. The Bada-Bings are setting up their instruments to play a live show. It’s twelve-year-old Robbie’s birthday, and his dad is passed out at the bar. Mr. Williams is running the place, and he surprises Robbie when he speaks Chinese to help the couple who wanders in. And then a child is born, making the human population eight billion, and suddenly genies appear, offering a wish to each and every person alive.

Williams quickly makes his wish, to protect his bar and everything and everyone inside it. Outside, all hell breaks loose. Bombs go off, real and figurative. The human population starts falling, and so does the number of genies (each disappears after it grants its wish).

The story that unfolds is entertaining, wild, and really compelling. And in the end it covers 800 years or so after the first wish.

This is one of the few recent series I read whenever a new issue came out. Plus the hardcover is truly deluxe with lots of extras.


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