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Die, Vol. 1: Fantasy Heartbreaker

(Die #1-5)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  1,915 ratings  ·  321 reviews
The Wicked + The Divine writer Kieron Gillen teams up with artist supernova Stephanie Hans (WicDiv, Journey Into Mystery) for her first ongoing comic. Die is a pitch-black fantasy where a group of forty-something adults have to deal with the returning, unearthly horror they only just survived as teenage role-players. If Kieron's in a rush, he describes it as "Goth ...more
Kindle Edition, 184 pages
Published June 5th 2019 by Image Comics
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Amanda Francis This is an ongoing series so if you would like to support the series, you can buy the individual issues online at comixology or at your local comic…moreThis is an ongoing series so if you would like to support the series, you can buy the individual issues online at comixology or at your local comic book shop! If not, unfortunately you will have to wait for the next trade to come out in a few months. I have already read #6 and it is so good!!(less)
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Average rating 4.12  · 
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 ·  1,915 ratings  ·  321 reviews


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Sam Quixote
Six kids find themselves magically transported into a D&D-type board game. Two years pass - and only five kids return to the real world. Twenty-five years later, the five are transported back into the game only to find their missing sixth friend has become the evil grandmaster of the fantasy world - and, this time, they must FINISH THE GAME! Which means, uh… they have tea and cakes and sing lovely songs about fish fingers…? I think it’s meant to be menacing or something.

So: Die is basically
...more
Sean Gibson
Aug 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Everyone* who has ever played a fantasy role-playing game (or, for that matter, first encountered fantasy literature as an impressionable young child) has wondered what it would be like, if not devoutly wished, to be transported to the setting of that game.

Not everyone, however, has put the same degree of thought into it that Gillen has in crafting this very dark vision of what would happen if a game master brought his vision to life for his players with some very real—and deadly—consequences.
...more
Artemy
Apr 04, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, image-comics
I feel like Gillen has dropped the ball here. Die has a brilliantly simple premise that mixes Jumanji, IT and Lord of the Rings. With Gillen's usual writing style, it should have been a fun ride with jaw-dropping twists, sharp snappy dialogue and fantastic characters. Instead, this series has been nothing but a depressing, over-narrated slog. There are too many characters and none of them are likeable or interesting. The story is too complicated, and the world-building is so over-engineered and ...more
James DeSantis
Man, I just couldn't get into this one.

So let me say I never played DnD and never really wanted to. It's just not my thing. This series is basically if DnD became a reality and you had to survive it.

So years ago a bunch of kids get sucked into this DnD world. Once there horrible things had happen and they come back to the real world a few years later. Then a time skip happens, they all become adults, and get sucked back into the game. The tale begins to flip flop from the past, the present,
...more
Jakub Kvíz
Apr 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
This will be one of the best books of 2019, mark my words!

Gorgeous art, gripping story, awesome and relatable characters, perfect world building and a lot of fantasy/pop culture references and jokes. This book has everything.
L. McCoy
Alright guys I hate saying it but I don’t like that there are SO many comics that a bunch of people love that I just don’t get why... Seriously, why do I have to miss the fun?

What’s it about?
Basically there’s this group of teenagers who had a role-playing game party with all kinds of special crazy shit with their characters and special die. The thing is they went missing the same day because they were transported into the game’s fantasy world but returned 2 years later except for one. 25 years
...more
Rod Brown
Jumanji: Welcome to the Dungeon. "We've got gloom and games..."

As with The Wicked + The Divine, Gillen delivers a perfectly fine high concept story and teams with a great artist, he just cannot come up with characters about whom I care one iota.
Dan
Oct 22, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
JUMANJI meets Tolkien.

I was all ready to love this, but between the atrocious visual storytelling of Stephanie Hans and the waaaaay too Inside Baseball RPG references, I could not wait for it to end. I've never played D & D, so I'm clearly not the target audience. There were some interesting aspects of the story, and I kinda-sorta closed the book wondering where things will go in the next volume, but I doubt I'll be back. This one was just too much of a struggle for me.
Štěpán Tichý
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoy Kieron Gillen'S writing style. Some things were a miss for me but more things that I've read were really good and I consider myself his fan. Stephanie Hans was a new face for me and art-wise this is a really stylised artist who knows how to make an impact.

First two issues were wonderful. The third was interesting. The fourth was interesting more and the fifth was home run. Gillen crafted here a really compelling story with overlapping elements that are not visible at first glance.
...more
Shannon Appelcline
Die is a fantasy with a standard theme: RPG players get sucked into their fantasy world. It's good, in large part because it twists the genre just a bit, with our players returning to their fantasy realm in their adult lives, twenty years after they escaped. And it's got fantasic art. But we've seen the core idea before, often to good effect in stories like The Guardians of The Flame, The Realm, and the D&D cartoon. For that matter, the idea itself is a twist on an older fantasy trope going ...more
Rose
I started reading this because I adore Kieron Gillen's writing - he's utterly fantastic at creating deeply fascinating but fucked up urban fantasy worlds, and I very very quickly fell in love with the concept of Die. The sheer idea of 'a group of kids literally fall into an edgy fantasy RPG,' is amazing, and if you've ever played an RPG, deeply horrified at the thought of children having to survive in that environment. Die plays with that idea, breaks down the idea of RPG mechanics, deals with ...more
Elliot
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
Really stunning all across the board. The art is stylistically interesting and really lovely to look at - despite the detail work it feels very smooth and dreamy. The story itself hits me right where I live, so to speak. A bunch of teens in the 90s play an RPG that transports them into the fantasy world, and when they emerge they aren't the same. When they return as adults it's even more fraught. I loved the world-building and game work that went into this, as well as this being a story about ...more
Alex Sarll
Kieron Gillen's latest, with its apparently simple premise of 'Whatever happened to the kids from the old Dungeons & Dragons cartoon afterwards?', is not a comic about which I can pretend any sort of objectivity. There's the usual reason of having known him on and off for longer than I care to quantify, sure. But on top of that there's the fact that a couple of years back, I was the first playtester for one of the classes in the RPG within the comic, which soon enough will be available as an ...more
Jessica
Jul 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a little bit tricky to get into as it goes so fast, but damn is the artwork beautiful and story entirely unique. As someone who loves D&D and role-playing games, this was really fun... plus seeing the Matt Mercer blurb made me a little giddy.
Craig
Jul 25, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This really is kind of a dull book, which is surprising given the beautiful art and the usually strong writing one would expect from Gillen. The story follows a bunch of grown up losers who suddenly find themselves returned (without explanation, really) to the fantasy land they were once lost in as children, while playing a Dungeons and Dragons-type game. Originally, there were 6, but only 5 found their way back and the sixth has now become the "Grandmaster" of this fantasy land and must be ...more
Trike
Aside from one brief sojourn in the superhero game Skraypers, I don’t play PnP RPGs so I’m sure 90% of this went over my head. Speaking as an outsider to this world, I couldn’t connect to this story or these characters at all.

The premise is pretty basic: it’s a Portal Fantasy (Oz, Wonderland and Narnia are the most famous PFs) where people from our world travel to a Fantasy world. This one happens to be a game world. That’s been done before, too. The old Dungeons & Dragons cartoon was
...more
Benji Glaab
Jul 29, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gntr

I had trouble buying into the story, and had trouble immersing myself into the world. Tbh the concept is kind of lame, but I think there will be a good story rooted here I might need another volume to warm up to things. I thought I was going to like this but the tone was also kind of off-putting. I think the party has some unique powers etc, and I enjoy the table top gaming tie in for their character skills. I always wanted to play D&D, but no one ever invited me, and it seems like a lot to
...more
Imogene
Just when I thought I was going to living with the gaping empty hole in my heart left by The Wicked + The Divine, here comes Die.

Just wow
Stewart Tame
A group of high school friends play a homebrew fantasy game in the early 90's and get literally pulled into the game. Two years later, all but one of them reappear by the side of the road. They refuse to talk about what happened, or why Angela is now missing an arm. Flash forward twenty-five years. Everyone is still haunted by the events of the past. But the time comes to return to the game …

If you’ve been reading or watching fantasy for any length of time, this likely isn't your first Players
...more
Zedsdead
A+ for concept. Six teenagers get sucked Jumanji-style into a homemade role-playing game. Two years later, five of them reappear on a remote road, unable to say anything about their disappearance. Thirty years after that, they get sucked back into Die-world and must find their lost friend and make their way home.

D+ for art. I like the black-white-red aesthetic, but in one panel out of three I can't tell which characters I'm looking at. And I spent two-thirds of the book confused about the
...more
Marija (Inside My Library Mind)
More reviews up on my blog Inside My Library Mind

The Wicked and the Divine is my favorite comic series of all time, so I figured I'd enjoy this, but I never expected to love it as much as I did!

This was honestly freaking fantastic! This is like a love child between D&D styled tabletop games and Jumanji, and it's honestly as brilliant as it sounds.

If you're someone who enjoys RPGs and if you generally love stuff that subverts common Fantasy tropes, while it also at the same time manages
...more
Bill
Jun 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's an intriguing premise and interesting twists in this tale of British forty-somethings returning to a "Dungeons and Dragons" style world they were trapped in for two years as teenagers... but the plot rushes along just a little too fast. I only got to know two of the five main characters well, so the choices of the others -- particularly in the conclusion -- didn't necessarily carry the proper emotional weight. Five issues was not enough to tell this ambitious story, especially when one ...more
Valéria.
Nov 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
I remember reading the first issue and that feeling of disappointment after that, the artwork was really ugly, it didn't catch my attention as I predicted and so I stopped to read it that way and waited for paperback until now. What changed? Well.. the story and world building are brilliant, characters diverse and interesting.. Still, I can't get into that artwork. The way it looked like was better for sure after they got into the world but still, some of the faces and parts are ugly, I can't ...more
Carey
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Holy cow, I haven't been this captivated by a comic in a really long time. Kieron Gillen's Wic+Div follow up is everything. As a young nerd, my worst nightmare was never finding Narnia. The young nerds in this book find Narnia. Narnia destroys them, spits them back into reality, and then comes calling a second time. Gillen's story hits close to home (probably for a lot of people), and Stephanie Hans's art is swoon-worthy in the extreme.

Bonus: maybe the most interesting trans narrative I've ever
...more
Jason
Apr 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read as individual issues.

I'm a huge fan of Kieron Gillen. I love his work with Jamie McKelvie on Young Avengers and I love his Star Wars work on Darth Vader, Doctor Aphra and currently the main title. I tried Wicked + Divine and while it had a great hook, I stopped reading around arc 3 or 4.

I think this is his best work. A great hook in chapter one followed by further world building in chapter 2. And then chapter 3 just takes the whole thing to another level. Chapter 5 ends on a kicker and I
...more
Geoffrey Payne
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This series is based on such a cool concept and so far has had great character development. I can’t wait for more! 4 out of 5.
Franki (wardenswatch)
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, 2019
Ahhh so good. Dungeons and Dragons themed anything should always come loaded with angst and characters with wacko OP-yet limited-powers!
Roy
Jun 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It started off really cool but then just became a little depressing/boring. The art was ok but was a little too depressing in its mood.
Christy
Dec 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
It meets D&D with a side of Stranger Things. I picked this up after deciding to read the Goodreads Best Of picks this year and it unexpectedly became a fav!
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1,293 followers
Kieron Gillen is a comic book writer and former media journalist.

Other books in the series

Die (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Die #1
  • Die #2
  • Die #3
  • Die #4
  • Die #5
  • Die #6
  • Die #7
  • Die #8
  • Die #9
  • Die #10
“This isn't a conversation. This is the sort of monologue you run in your head with lovers you'll never speak to again. This is what happens when thoughts curdle.” 1 likes
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