Marvel have just done the world a service and reprinted Jack Kirby’s final truly great creation, The Eternals.

This massive hardcover reprints all nineteen issues of the 1976-78 series, plus the 1977 Annual, in the oversize format. For probably the last time in his career, Kirby was firing on all cylinders, telling the story of what happens when the godlike beings that genetically engineered humans return to Earth to judge their creations. Aiding humanity against the threat are the hidden super-beings, the Eternals, and their deadly enemies, the Deviants.

It’s a rollicking read, featuring Kirby’s strongest art of this mid-70s period. The story too is very accomplished as he weaves a complex tale that refuses to concentrate on any particular cast member, but instead plays up the ensemble — almost soap opera — aspects. The twists and turns are quite masterful, and it’s just a shame that later editorial interference from the Marvel offices marred the final issues. But don’t let that put you off — this is a book well worth owning.