The Wild Storm #2 Review

Posted March 15, 2017 by Jean-Luc Botbyl in Comic Books

Written by: Warren Ellis

Art by: Jon Davis-Hunt and Steve Buccellato

Publisher: DC Comics

If every issue of The Wild Storm opens like the first two issues have, then we truly are in for a treat when this book hits shelves every month. The near-silent five pages that kick off this issue see artist Jon Davis-Hunt put on an absolute clinic in visual storytelling. Everything from the layouts down to Steve Buccellato’s exquisite colors feels engineered to evoke a response from the reader.

And it’s effective.

The visual storytelling in this book is perhaps its strongest element. It always feels integral to the narrative – without it, I could see much of the dialogue falling completely flat. But Davis-Hunt’s work complements Warren Ellis’ script, and the two coalesce to form a comic that is truly excellent. The Wild Storm is special because it feels like it wouldn’t work in any other medium.

Much like the first issue, the creative team here is concerned largely with fleshing out the characters and the world they inhabit. I don’t think the results here are quite as breath taking as they were for the first issue, but my critiques are small. Giving the world the time it needs to breathe and develop seems crucial to the success of this series, and Ellis isn’t rushing the introductions.

For the most part, the exposition works. It’s rare that it feels like exposition, with tidbits of information being inserted into the dialogue. Unfortunately, that means that the clunky exposition sticks out like a sore thumb. These instances are rare, but also impossible to ignore.

However, I don’t want to dwell on that critique for too long. After all, it does an utterly poor job of characterizing the quality of the writing in this book. The dialogue is largely seamless, and two issues deep I’m already invested in the characters’ respective journeys. Each individual group of characters is fascinating to read, and I look forward to seeing them all collide with one another.

It’s quite shocking to me just how much is accomplished in terms of the plot in this issue. Normally, the type of character and world introductions that are taking place come at the expense of plot movement. Not here. And yes, the plot is moving fairly slowly. But by the end of the issue, there’s a definite advancement in the narrative.

All told, the second issue of The Wild Storm is just about as strong as the first. The pace definitely feels scaled back, but not by much. At this point, I feel like I’m fully invested in the world that Ellis has crafted here. Two issues deep, and without exposure to previous stories with these characters, that’s impressive.

About the Author

Jean-Luc Botbyl

Jean-Luc is a grizzled veteran of We the Nerdy. Most days, he just wonders why he hasn't been formally fired. Follow him on Twitter at @J_LFett to make him feel validated.