My wall to wall coverage of as much Secret Wars as possible brings me to my last review for this week, Secret Wars: Battleworld #2.  Will we end on a high note?  Read on to find out.

The vignette mini-series which collects random side-stories from around Battleworld continued this week with issue #2.  Again, there are two short stories here that probably won’t have any ties to the major books that are being published, other than that they all occur on the same planet.  Here we get a Blade and Howard the Duck story, written by David F. Walker, with art by J. J. Kirby, that is obviously supposed to be the comedy half of the issue, followed by a story involving General Thunderbolt Ross as he fight enemies in Arcade’s Killiseum, written by Donny Cates and illustrated by Marco Turini.

In the first half of the issue, a version of Blade (who appears to be straight out of the 70s) randomly finds himself in New Quack City, fighting a duck version of Dracula.  Their scuffle smashes through the front window of a bar where Howard the Duck is drinking the night away.  Walker’s concept here is incredibly silly, but paired with appropriately cartoony art from Kirby, it’s still pretty fun and enjoyable, much like the M.O.D.O.K. story from issue #1.  It’s unsure weather either of these two characters will appear in another book from Battleworld, but it really doesn’t matter.  They had their moment here, together, and it worked.  ‘Nuff said.

The latter half of the issue is a slightly different story.  Cates’ narrative about General Ross having somehow merged his body with the War Machine armor to go on a quest for revenge seems more like filler than anything else.  That’s not to say that there aren’t some interesting aspects here.  We do get a more in depth look at the Killiseum that villain Arcade runs for the amusement of the people of Doomstadt, which we really only glimpsed briefly in Planet Hulk #1.  Also, the idea of gladiatorial combat provides an interesting base, but ultimately the story that’s crafted around those two aspects is kind of… well… boring.  Turini’s art is the high point of this story, as it has a very gritty and realistic aspect that brings the characters to life on the page.  However, if there’s one thing to take away from this story, it’s that we’ll probably see more of General Ross-machine in another series, as his quest for revenge is not quite resolved by the end of his appearance here.

In general, issue #2 was still relatively enjoyable, but not quite so much as the first issue in this series.  The format through two issues so far seems to be one comedic story, and one serious or dramatic story.  In this particular case, the comedy worked well, but the drama seemed to fall on its face a little.

The Verdict for Secret Wars: Battleworld #2:

Until next time,
Stay nerdy, my friends.

Upcoming reviews:
East of West, Volume 3: There Is No Us TPB
Ultimate End #2 (Secret Wars Tie-In)
Ghost Racers #1 (Secret Wars Tie-In)
Weirdworld #1 (Secret Wars Tie-In)
Secret Wars: Journal #2
Wytches #1-#6
March of the Crabs, Volume 1: The Crabby Condition


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