DIES IRAE is the story of Steve Kirby, a martial arts instructor for the NYPD who loses
his wife and son in the World Trade Center attack on September 11.
Steve embarks on a crusade against the Bush Administration when he realizes that President
George W. Bush is cynically exploiting 9/11 for his personal gain and for the purpose of
instituting a dangerous right-wing agenda.
In Latin, Dies Irae means Day of Wrath. To medieval Christians, Dies Irae was the Lord's Judgment Day--the Apocalypse, Doomsday, the end of the world. When September 11 happened, many described it as America's dies irae. But for Steve, because of September 11 and its aftermath, now every day is a day of wrath.
DIES IRAE is the creation of Justin Wertham, a writer who lived in New York during 9/11
and its aftermath. At least seven issues of DIES IRAE are planned, providing the reader
with a fresh look at the recent events of post-9/11 America. Future issues will deal with
such themes as the search for the anthrax killer, the war in Afghanistan and the hunt for bin
Laden, the Patriot Act and Guantanamo, and of course a multi-issue story arc leading up to
the war in Iraq.
We are proud to present the first issue of DIES IRAE (entitled "Day of Wrath, Day of Judgment"), illustrated by the great Spain Rodriguez, one of the founders of the underground comix movement in the Sixties and the creator of the legendary Sixties revolutionary superhero, Trashman.
A note: Outraged by America's invasion of Iraq, Justin Wertham conceived the idea for DIES IRAE in May 2003 and wrote the first issue in the summer of 2003-well in advance of Michael Moore's brilliant FAHRENHEIT 9/11 and the current spate of 9/11 movies. DIES IRAE debuted on the Web in April 2004, and in October 2005, World War Three Illustrated #36, America's leading journal of political art, published the first nine pages of DIES IRAE to widespread acclaim. If you would like to contact Justin, please e-mail him here.
About Spain Rodriguez
Learn more about the legendary creator of Trashman, one of the originators of underground
comix in the Sixties. With interviews, profiles, and many links to examples of his work,
including the online strip The Dark Hotel.
Zap Comix & Underground Comix
Understand the countercultural milieu from which DIES IRAE sprang. Read about the
evolution of Zap Comix and underground comix in general, with looks at the work of
Robert Crumb, S. Clay Wilson, Gilbert Shelton, Rick Griffin, Skip Williamson, Victor
Moscoso, and Robert Williams. Numerous links to examples of their work.
Politics & Art
Art's relationship to politics, political cartoons (Thomas Nast and David Low), political art
(Pablo Picasso and George Grosz), and politics & comic books (Joe Simon & Jack Kirby, Spain
Rodriguez, and Denny O'Neill & Neal Adams). Many links.
What Is "Dies Irae"?
In Latin, Dies Irae means Day of Wrath. Learn about the greatest of all medieval Latin
hymns, the Dies Irae, and its impact on classical and modern music. (If you've seen
Citizen Kane, you've heard the Dies Irae.) With side-by-side Latin/English translations, an
MP3 of the classic plainsong, and poetic responses by Thomas Babington Macaulay and