Once I made it to the end of this issue, I realized that Last Born may actually get to something really great over its next few issues. Just like the premiere issue though, this one contends itself with solely further establishing its premise.
We find Julia in the midst of a training session with the white bearded Ford and Eden, his near-feral travelling companion. The session is soon interrupted by the arrival of Private Lee who falls from the sky. After some polite intros, things flash-back (forward?) to Lee’s life prior to his arrival in Julia’s future, his past, via the same cave. Through some handy exposition, we learn that in Lee’s future the world has been overrun by an ambiguous invading force that has caused the few survivors to all make their home on a marine outpost. Lee, one of these few survivors, is selected for the mission to return to the past, and present an opportunity for the future to Julia and co.
Tonally, things shift dramatically in the couple pages we get of Lee’s future. Despite its apocalyptic setting, we’re treated to a dance scene and a sex scene back-to-back, showing us the luxuries that Lee gives up in order to fulfill his mission. I also really appreciated getting to see his trip to the past from his point-of-view, climaxing in a humorous moment where Lee is clearly surprised by what ends up happening to him (Read the complete review here).
I think I’ve reached my end with Sundowners, and it’s possible I might regret that choice should this issue’s upswing continue. As things stand right now though, Sundowners seems pretty satisfied as a ho-hum comic with characters that don’t particularly resonate with me in any manner despite the intrigue built up by their mental disorders, and the impact that has on their vigilantism. With a last page that feels tasteless in its treatment of depression, I’m confident that whatever’s in store for the Sundowners isn’t something I’ll care to read about.
Crowlita starts this issue tracking down Meghan, a woman she believes was part of a cult ritual. This trek ends when Crowlita ends up in front of a church, only to be transported to a hellish landscape where she’s attacked by what’s either demonic tadpoles or, more disturbingly, sentient giant sperm. It’s an intense two pages that Jim Terry pulls off really nicely, Sean Dove’s colors lending the hell dimension a great tone.
It sucks then that we don’t return to Crowlita until much later this issue. Instead, what we get is a check-in with each of the Sundowners as they return home, and in the case of Karl, wake up in what others hope will be their home. Of all these individual threads, I was most captivated by Joe’s who breaks into the home of his ex-wife under the delusion that he can provide her protection. It was hard not to feel sympathy for him when he takes down his monotone persona, and begs to stay for the night, things only getting worse for him when his ex’s new partner shows up, an actual cop who reminds Joe just how foolish his vigilante antics are (Read the complete review here).
We’re three issues in, and Wayward seems just about to wrap its ‘getting the gang’ together portion, which is great because despite the numerous scene changes, it doesn’t feel like very much happens here other than Rori’sMonster Mash gang getting a potential fourth member.
Things start out this issue with Rori gazing out her window, her self-inflicted wounds from last issue in the page’s center. From there we follow Rori to school where she meets Shirai, the boy from her school who eats evil spirits to sustain himself. Deciding that the best course of action would be to track down Ayanne, the felinesque woman from the first issue, Rori puts her powers at work with a group of cats who lead her to an abandoned area of Tokyo. There the two find a spirit as its begun to leech on someone’s life force while they sleep. Fortunately, Ayanne shows up to lend them a hand, at one point biting into the skeleton spirit’s skull in one of the comic’s few moments of humor.
Elsewhere, a man dressed in a boating hat and red bowtie, among other things, convenes with a group of fox-spirits about Rori’s arrival, and how she might interrupt their plans, calling her a Rogue Weaver. This combined with the final page reveal about Rori’s mom give me hope that the comic won’t devolve into a monster of the week structure similar to early Buffy and Smallville (Read the complete review here)
Black Science feels like an old-school sci fi serial if it had an all-star cast, the best wardrobe designer, Rodenberry level writers, and an unlimited special effects budget. However, also like old-school serials, things in Black Sciencefeel as if they come to a sudden halt each issue just as we’re getting into the thick of it, an issue that’s causing me to question whether trade waiting may be the way to go.
After Nate and Pia’s capture by the telepathic millipedes (you read that right) last issue, I thought that things would end badly for one of the McKay children this time around. Fortunately, Pia uses her knowledge of their dimensional suits to forge a getaway for her and her brother on the back of a walrus/caterpillar hybrid, perhaps my favorite beast so far on this world. Throughout their escape, we also gain insight into Pia’s perspective on her current predicament, placing much of the blame on her deceased father and using the resulting anger to drive their mad dash for freedom. This scene, in just a few pages, give us all the info necessary to figure out how the siblings’ view themselves within the team, Pia politely referring to their predicament as ‘bullshit’ that their dad has forced them to eat (Read the complete review here).