18th Nov2015

‘Heroes: Vengeance #2’ Review (Titan Comics)

by Dean Fuller

Written by Seamus Kevin Fahey, Zach Craley | Art by Rubine | Published by Titan Comics | Format:Paperback, 32pp


Issue 1 of this 5 issue limited series was a bit of a disappointment to me, it must be said. The idea is sound; take characters from the Heroes Reborn TV show, and give them an individual spotlight, add more depth and interest to them and their world. Have it co-written by the show’s producer too, to keep consistency and authenticity. Sounds great, but as the first issue showed individual pieces do not a satisfying end product make. I had my fingers crossed for issue two.

Issue 1 gave us the set-up, Oscar Gutierrez is a mechanic by day, costumed vigilante at night, dedicated in both guises to keeping his community (and family) safe. We still jump between the past and present, and a few more hints are revealed to the reader. Carlos was absent from the first issue in the present so I assumed he had died (hey, this is comic book motivation 101) and that was why Oscar became El Vengador. A picture of Carlos in army uniform dispels that theory. Also subtly thrown in is the reason for the hero worship of the original wrestler El Vengador; he was the grandfather of Oscar and Carlos.

I guess the theme here is ‘inspiration’. The costume of El Vengador represented to Oscar not just the classic motif of good beating bad (in this case the arch foe, dirty wrestling opponent El Diablo), but also of honest values, of doing the right thing. His grandfather was told to throw fights and threatened if he didn’t, but refused. These plot nuggets were very welcome advances, as was the addition of a super-powered foe, or EVO as they are called, in the set-piece fight, because these aside it was a very repetitive issue. Clearly echoing the first issue, we had some present exposition, some wrestling in the past, and a fight in the present. Not enough is happening to push the story forward fast enough, it lacks a spark, lacks the momentum we as readers like to see.

My quibbles with the art remain, though I thought this better than the first issue. It could just be of course that I have got used to it, but the fight scenes had a little more flow to them, and the art did help the story move nicely enough. The computer colouring can still overwhelm, but in places was actually muted a little which suited those scenes.

A better effort than issue 1, and some actual development beyond giving us just a fight and back story, but still suffers from pacing issues. Unfortunately I think the stylistic hook the story is hung upon (using similar scenes and situations in the past and present to help the flow of the story) is also the hook it is stuck upon. Fitting those scenes in to the natural flow of the story is not easy, and the pacing reflects that.

All that being said, I will be back for issue 3. The concept is sound, the lead character interesting enough, and there certainly feels as though there is much more to come.

*** 3/5

Heroes: Vengeance #2 is out now from Titan Comics


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