Spirits of Vengeance #2
Written by: Victor Gischler
Pencils by: David Baldeon
Colors by: Andres Mossa
What You Need to Know:
Following up on it’s ridiculously fun first issue. This second issue acts a great continuation having our team of 3 following up on possible leads and continuing to scrap and scab away at the untold truth scratching and bubbling just beneath the surface do our heroes have what it takes to save the world from war between Heaven and Hell?
What You’ll Find Out: Well you get some much needed backstory and worldbuilding in this issue as Hellstrom is still acting as the John Constantine of this series but I am still surprisingly ok with this. Explaining a lot of mythos in matter of a few pages this brilliantly established much needed stakes in a series that doesn’t take itself too seriously and truth be told I glad about that. I am also extremely glad about the fact that while this does take place in the Marvel Universe it is so disconnected from everything else let’s just call it “mainstream Marvel” similar to Ultimates that is honestly the best thing about this series. Just how it doesn’t haven’t to deal with mainstream continuity fully allowing itself the flexibility and creativity to truly craft something special here. Compromise would be the worst thing to happen to a series like this and mainstream Marvel continuity would just bog the series down smartly enough everyone working on this series made sure to pick characters they knew Marvel wouldn’t be using or have use of. So thankfully it’s so disconnected that the audience can just tune in and have fun with it(even if you’re not necessarily familiar with all of the these characters issue one gives a brief rundown on all of them). But other then the recruitment of Satanna and the worldbuilding behind the Covenant not too much happens.
What Just Happened? Again aside from the recruitment of Hellstrom’s sister(still waiting for those abs to come into play I just know they will be an integral and pivotal piece to the plot), of course the explanation of what makes the Silver Bullet so special(other than that it’s a silver bullet I mean), the war between Heaven and Hell, and the origin of the material used to make the bullet. You will learn about customs and laws made between Heaven and Hell and the truce they heard but now with Hell having a weapon that could potential tip the scale it’s up to our Heroes to save us all from possible enslavement and genocide(wishful thinking here.)
Final Thoughts: Does this issue work? For my money’s worth I’d say yes. Similar to how Red Hood and the Outlaws Rebirth had to put all of it’s pieces in place before it could actually just jump into it’s main storyline. That is exactly what this series is doing some may consider the set up slow or dragging but I’ve seen worse and the characters are interesting enough that even if not much is happening just having them all together in a single panel together is enough to hold my interest. There is a lot of exposition in this issue but you need that to establish stakes and all this series is doing so far is set up but for a first 2 issues that’s kind of what you have to do. Stand outs are of course Blade I am so happy just to see him in something again easily one of my favorites it’s just good to see my man’s Wesley getting some much needed shine ”Book-Keeper’s my ass.” Is easily the best line in this issue so thank you for that Wesley. Johnny is always as usual a delight to see restrained and reserved hiding a demon inside of him can’t be an easy task and is certainly a challenging one I just hope to see more of his hot headedness personality bleed through in the upcoming issues. Blade is normally quiet so that works fine and again I hope next issue see’s Hellstrom throw down because as of now he is just an overglorified John Constantine which of course I don’t mind but at some point the shirt needs to come off and that trident does need to come out. Satanna is the only sour note of the issue she is the only member that I don’t know much about but you won’t find anything more here and she isn’t even thrown onto the team till the very end of the issue feeling like sort of an afterthought(although her introduction is badass). The artwork still looks great and whenever Ghost Rider comes out and throws down I always play the Spirit of Vengeance movie theme. Only real con is Blade, Johnny, and Damion share every scene together and hardly interact with one another. This is one of the most ranged and varied teams Marvel currently has for future reference let’s not hope Victor doesn’t forget that and truly plays up their differences and dynamic. All in all still entertaining and still looking forward to what’s going to happen in this series they’re setting up something massive and all the while also not taking it too seriously which is good the only thing that can ruin a series faster than bad writing is melodrama. Overall I’m still having a hell of a time reading it and it is still one of the bright spots on Marvels general lackluster and uninspiring lineup. You’ve got the fantasy football all star team next move is you’re’s Victor how do you plan to use them?