Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The Silencer #2 Review

They Keep Pulling Me Back In!

Written by: John Romita Jr and Dan Abnett
Art by: John Romita Jr, Sandra Hope, Dean White, Arif Prianto, and Tom Napolitano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: February 28, 2018

The New Age continues, and so far I don't think it's entirely successful. Sure, that may be a bit of a premature thing to say, but they have failed to hook me thus far. The same can be said for The Silencer. I enjoyed the first issue well enough but this time around… well, you just have to read on!

The issue starts off directly where we left off, with Honor Guest battling Breacher and Bloodvessel, two assassins from the Underlife. It's honestly kind of hard to tell exactly what's going on, mostly because the Zone of Silence power just drowns everything in a blue hue that's hard to read. To make things worse, this is John Romita Jr handling the art, so things are tough to read anyway. The progression is noticeable enough, however.

She manages to defeat both 90s rejects in a very uninspired way and she calls the Switchboard. This was the coolest moment of the issue for me, as we get truly introduced to what the Underlife is really capable of and she requests a complete clean-up and replacement for her car. 

Honor heads home and we have a series of scenes featuring her family that I really think the team is nailing. This is easily the strongest section of the book for me. While the art is rough, the dialogue injects enough heart and genuine banter to make it worthwhile. This is where I'll end the spoiler talk.

Things get a bit more predictable from this point on. I was concerned with the typical nature of the story, in that a retired assassin is pestered by their former organisation to come back to work for them. How many times have we seen this in fiction? It's a very overdone concept, but I had faith that the team would try something else by placing it firmly in the DCU. Here we see that not much is being done to differentiate this story from any other, which is truly unfortunate. We're two issues in and I'm already dead tired of Honor going on about how she's done with this life and how she wants to live with her family, and all the usual dialogue we get.

This issue essentially follows the same format as the previous issue. Honor gets into a fight with someone from the Underlife, confronts someone from the Underlife, and at the end of it gets into another fight with an Underlife member. Sure, it's easy to boil it down like that, but it's a noticeable structure that I wish the team would shy away from. 

In terms of craft, this issue was on the weaker side as well. My main problem from the last issue, the terrible inner monologue, is back and it might be even worse. I have never thought of Dan Abnett as a visual or dynamic storyteller and it seems like he just doesn't feel like Romita's work is enough on its own to tell the story. Do I really need to see Honor say "Zone of Silence off…" when I can very clearly see her snapping her fingers to turn it off? As for the art, it was also significantly weaker than the previous instalment. Some of it comes across as a bit rushed, and the fact that there are two colourists working on this just make the whole package seem off.

Bits and Pieces:

I liked this issue a lot less than the previous one. The story feels less dynamic and real than it did in the last issue, and some of the storytelling choices didn't do it any favours. The book is too overwritten and the art is a bit sloppier due to it looking rushed and less whole because of the two colourists. I still think this series has legs, and I think Viktor Bogdanovic will be the one to jumpstart it. Romita is leaving the book after the next issue, you see.


1 comment:

  1. I think I liked this issue a lot more than the first one, I'm liking Honour more and more as a protagonist and I'm intrigued with what might come next. You're damn right with Victor Bogdanovic, I can't wait to see him really boost the visuals for this book!!