Phantom Lady and Doll Man #2 (of 4)
This was my most anticipated comic of the week. Yeah, that may sound weird, a little ole’ mini-series about the re-imagining of a classic DC character - why so excited?
Well that is simple. The creative team. They are a solid group of folks, on any book. They also did a great job of captivating me during the first issue. So I was back, ready to be impressed.
What I didn’t realize was that preview would be near the middle of the book. Which was nice. As a month had passed since the last issue, I was a bit off track when it came to where the story was… but the book was very helpful to get me back on track and back in the swing of the story.
You will want to pick up Issue #1 before reading Issue #2. It is not absolutely necessary, but highly recommended. That said, this issue’s rating did improve from the last. Which is what I like to see.
The art, once again, is beautiful. And yes, while the cover is gorgeous, it is the interiors that really make the book. The expressiveness illustrated is second-to-none. Every little smirk, “Hey now!”, and curiosity is captured perfectly. It is to the point where you could just look at the images and get the feel of the issue. This makes the dialog and direction that much more powerful for the story overall.
It is a perfect origin story. And with the origin out of the way, execution of the plan, with the powers, is initiated. As this is a 4-part mini-series, pacing is critical, and just like other mini’s from this creative team, they have it down. The pacing feels great.
This issue ends with a great cliffhanger. We are introduced to Phantom Lady and Doll Man’s next challenge - a re-imagined classic villain for these re-imagined classic Freedom Fighters. We are left with a classic teaser:
“Next: The dead can dance…and die!”
These kinds of teasers, and even the cover announcements, are the subtle points that I love about these classic character re-imaginings (just like The Ray).
I love being “haunted” by a story. It makes the experience last so much longer than just the initial read. And one of the most haunting aspects of this story is the level of perceived violence. Just the first few pages get you thinking. I have never seen anything like that level of torture and proposed killing method. Creepy. And. Scary. (And well done! As I am still thinking about it!)
So, the reasons this didn’t get a perfect score… well I had a question about some of the aspects of the story - a character specific question. I am not trying to be petty here, I am just wondering if I should know something I don’t, or if I should just ignore this very nit-picky thing:
If Phantom Lady needs to hood to create her black light constructs, how does she create the constructs without the hood (there are a couple examples during some of the testing powers / action scenes).
Then, I had a story timing question…
The time line is a bit confusing, so be sure to remember, much of the previous issue (after the into with Phantom Lady kicking butt) is set in the “Metropolis, Six Month’s Earlier” time frame.
For this issue, we pick up where that left off (still in the past), and progress slowly through the origin. The next jump is a small increment, “Calvin City Lake. Two Weeks Later…” And then a much bigger jump to, “Metropolis. Now.” So this means we are back the same time frame where Phantom Lady was kicking butt in the first issue.
It all makes sense, just a bit confusing with the reading time between issues. So more my fault than anything else. :| What started this train of thought was a question I had about Cyrus and Warlock knowing about Phantom Lady and Doll Man so quick (seemingly after the training at Calvin Lake… but we advance much more than two weeks from the training to the Metropolis brawls).
In any case, this mini-series is great. If you don’t have them yet, go pick them up from your Local Comic Shop…Today!