There’s a lot to cover on Wednesdays. We should know, as collectively, we read an insane amount of comics. Even with a large review staff, it’s hard to get to everything. With that in mind, we’re back with Wrapping Wednesday, where we look at some of the books we missed in what was another great week of comics.
Let’s get this party started.
Captain America: Symbol of Truth #2
Written by Tochi Onyebuchi
Illustrated by R.B. Silva
Colored by Jesus Aburtov
Lettered by VC’s Joe Caramagna
Reviewed by Alexander Manzo
In this issue of Tochi Onyebuchi’s “Captain America,” he has Sam Wilson still on the hunt for who is trying to make their super-soldier serum. This time we get more than just the perspectives of Sam and Joaquin ‘Falcon’ Torres as we see White Wolf and Crossbones are biding their time trying to put them both in traps. This was a solid follow-up issue because it gives the reader plenty of gun fights featuring Deadpool and some mysterious twists for Falcon as he tries to keep his cousin safe. Onyebuchi continues to play with the themes of freedom and some of the ugly truths about America when dealing with migrants, as Falcon knows too well and is rightfully suspicious of the actions of their government. It has that spy thriller vibe to it by not having anyone trustworthy for our protagonists and is similar to a 007 James Bond movie where the overall mission can be slightly forgotten but comes back around when the guns take a break.
R.B. Silva steps up to the plate with tight line work and good points of view that keep the reader involved. The last issue had trouble with some perspectives due to the aerial fights, but with the gunfights this time, they’re grounded and easier to follow. The colorist, Jesus Arburtov, also creates these V For Vendetta-like vibes with the fire sequences. The shadow work between the two of them helps keep the thriller tones of this story.
Final Verdict: -7.8 This is an extraordinary second chapter in this mystery spy story filled with tons of action and suspense.
Written by Joshua Williamson
Illustrated by Roger Cruz
Inked by Norm Rapmund
Colored by Luis Guerrero
Lettered by Troy Peteri
Reviewed by Quinn Tassin
“Robin” #15 is an interesting one step backward, two steps forward kind of issue. When things open up, Damian is back in Gotham fighting clowns (who literally pour out of a clown car) and chilling with the Bat-fam. The Lazarus Island arc was genuinely great but it would be a lie to say seeing Damian return to his roots doesn’t scratch a certain itch. Still, once Talia al Ghul escaped detention, the issue started to feel like too much a return to the good old days.
Of course, “Robin” is a smarter series than that and it turns out this was more like a visit home between college semesters. Maybe there’s a bit of a reversion to old ways but it’s actually in service of real growth. When Talia and Bruce fight over who Damian is going to follow, he makes it clear that he’s still on his own path; it’s a move that allows the Damian-Bruce relationship to stay positive while making space for the material that made this such a great series in the first place. Even Talia’s escape is actually a setup for a one woman Suicide Squad situation. With these moves, “Robin” #15 pulls off a solid bait and switch.
Sadly, the artwork in this issue leaves something to be desired. It’s not bad by any means. The staging and layouts are fine. Characters are rendered decently. But there’s a sense of life missing from the issue. Moreover, the lack of detail is hard to ignore. More often than not, backgrounds are just colors rather than settings and characters’ faces don’t feel particularly expressive (plus, the center piece of Damian’s mask is nowhere to be found). This is a series whose art has been generally excellent so reading an issue that has these rushed, static qualities is a bit of a shame.Continued below
Final Verdict: 7.2- A nice reset for a solid series
Sonic the Hedgehog #50
Written by Ian Flynn
Illustrated by Adam Bryce Howard
Colored by Matt Herms, Heather Breckel, and Reggie Graham
Lettered by Shawn Lee
Reviewed by Gregory Ellner
Making a culmination of multi-year arc combine effectively with a decent entry point for newcomers can be difficult to all-but-impossible. However, with “Sonic the Hedgehog” #50, Ian Flynn, already an established veteran of ‘Sonic’ comics since the Archie Comics days, shows he is more than up to the task. From characterization being on point to the well-earned catharsis of various characters, there is a lot to love for returning fans, merging dramatic scenes with some slight humor along the way. However, where Flynn’s writing really shines is in how he is able to make every person completely distinct and recognizable even to people with little to no experience with these comics at all, working very well as a point from where a casual reader could jump in (albeit with less effectiveness in the pathos of it all).
Adam Bryce Howard really stretches his talent to new heights. While the violence and even the smaller moments may seem exaggerated and cartoonish, he manages to somehow make the scenes have immense depth. Even with exaggerated proportions or actions, there is a serious air of menace to some villains, and manic hostility to some others. At the same time, there is a sense of levity where necessary, with the entire thing coming together rather well for a finale to a major arc.
Matt Herms, Heather Breckel, and Reggie Graham all work on the colors, each with their own pages. Different coloring styles create different moods, but together the three colorists create a comprehensive tale. Softer hues and tones give a false sense of security in the most violent of situations, along with making the scenes seem to almost “blur” with the speed of the action. On the other hand, starker choices give a feeling of security in calmer moments, which makes the time when said moments collapse all the more shocking.
Final Verdict: 8.5 – Expert characterization and overall storytelling works hand-in-hand with phenomenal artwork and colors to provide a satisfying climax that is likely to leave readers new and old wanting more.