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‘Crossover #2’ (review)

Written by Donny Cates
Illustrated by Geoff Shaw
Published by Image Comics

 

Crossover’s concept of our childhood superheroes suddenly inhabiting the real world is critically acclaimed across the comic book fandom.

However, when a new comic book series premieres with a stellar opening act, the question becomes, will subsequent installments follow suit.

The second issue plays like a much-improved sequel.

Donny Cates builds upon what he established in the first issue by adding more character depth, drama, and mystery.

There is also a bit of humor coupled with an echo of true-life elements. News reports of renowned comic book creators either killed or missing conjures a few laughs.

After readers consume the ridiculousness, a touch of reality sets in, if Batman and Spider-Man invaded our world, chances are Scott Snyder and Dan Slott would need protection.

It’s crazy to think about, but it’s also what would really happen.

Cates opens up another plot point involving all the regular, non-powered people of the comic book world. Their plight is a fascinating concept because we barely think about the average Joe when reading comic books. Despite seeing Superman save people from a burning building multiple times throughout the years, the idea of their inclusion never crossed my mind.

Art imitates life as some people feel there is no need to worry about regular people, while others believe super-powered villains are hiding among the powerless and waiting to strike.

Geoff Shaw’s artwork brings a balance between fun visuals and realistic settings. A jail scene looks believable, as one can imagine under the circumstances. However, the fun ensures as shadowy images of popular comic book characters inhabit the cells. There are just enough features shown with each character to identify the heroes without Image Comics getting sued.

Cates sets the story’s two main protagonists, Ryan and Ellie, on different paths to what might be the same destination. Ellie is looking to do the right thing while Ryan, well, he is caught between a rock and a hard place. After an exciting first issue where the impossible became possible, Crossover’s second installment sets the stakes with reality mixed in with grand fictional elements. While there is a bit of a tone change here, it adds layers to the book’s overall presentation. People have always feared what they don’t understand. It’s the actions and reactions of the people involved that create an exciting and thoughtful story.

Grade: A-

 

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