What If Hitler Lived? – Chasing Hitler #1 Sets Up An Unsettling Premise

by James Ferguson

Adolf Hitler is the quintessential historical villain. Godwin’s Law states that he’s pretty likely to be brought up in an argument on the Internet, too. Although he died during World War II, he’s perhaps just as relevant today with the current political climate. But what if he didn’t die? That’s the premise behind Chasing Hitler from Red 5 Comics and it presents a pretty interesting idea.

The comic flips between two allied service men assigned to capture Hitler and the Fuhrer himself as he watches the Nazis’ hopes of winning the war crumble. The bulk of the first issue is spent with Hitler as the realization that he’s lost settles in. He gets increasingly desperate with each page turn. Can you imagine what would have happened to him if he was captured alive? Mussolini was hanged and his body was desecrated. Hitler would be in for far worse.

That’s not to say that Hitler is put in a sympathetic light. He’s still a monster. We see the situation that he’s in and understand that his enemies are closing in. His options are very limited so he puts an elaborate plan into place that is as cunning as it is cold-blooded.

This resolution is seen on the character’s face. You can see him bogged down with the weight of his impending decision. Artist Jethro Morales doesn’t make him human, as that is nearly impossible. Instead we see what a villain he is, even in what should have been his final moments. He may be hated by the world, but there are a handful of people that actually care for him. This makes the very idea that he survived the war all the more unsettling.

The soldiers, Major Alex Taylor and Major Conner Walsh are the polar opposite of this. They’re your typical grunts, hardened by war but excited to see the conflict come to an end as that means they’ll be going home. They’re no saints though. The two of them stumble upon Hitler’s plan and that sets them off on this epic chase. This will prove difficult as the world thinks – and more importantly, wants to believe – that Hitler is dead. The very idea that he’s still alive is the last think anyone wants to think about.

Chasing Hitler #1 establishes the plot, although most of it is spoiled in the issue’s description. The details are what shine through and ultimately pull you in. Writers Jai and Hayley Nitz have crafted a very intriguing premise. World War II is rife with stories big and small. Chasing Hitler shows there are still more to tell with unique twists.

Chasing Hitler #1 is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology.