Review of the SLG series Gargoyles #2, by Revel
We all know it was delayed, there are several rumors on about why, but I’m not going to go into it. Safe to say things should proceed as smooth as the process will allow and both art and writing are now on schedule.
The issue picks up the rest of the story of “The Journey” as we remember it from TV. I believe the writing in this half is even more smooth in transition to comic form. Many commented, and the publisher in turn admitted, that the print came off very dark in issue one, the color and tone has brightened making things easier to see. Unfortunately, the colorist still needs to work on correcting the colors and stop making Hudson green. Another anomaly in this issue was Goliath’s glowing eyes. We see them in more than one frame resembling more lightning bolts than just bioluminescent glowing. It probably shouldn’t bother me, but it does.
What stands out the most about the art in this issue is that nothing really stands out- no mistakes as awkward as those that appeared in issue one, but no imagery that really blows you out of your socks. The coloring had improved but the scenes were still too dark, too muted; most of the animated show was set at night and they managed to avoid that problem without it looking like the characters were standing in light.
There's a few nits, like Goliath looking a little like he's wearing speedos in page one, and a miscoloring of part of his loincloth as Elisa's dress on page two, and a few definite improvements, such as seeing the action from a different angle that the last comic portrayed on its last page helps make where the guns are being fired from make more sense, seem more realistic.
Anatomically the figures have improved, which is good news, but there is of course always room for improvement. Given that gargoyles do have different joints in places and of course wings and tails it understanding that the artist must work hard to sketch them properly especially since never having drawn them before. In issue two the noted improvements were to the basic crossover anatomy, things that gargoyles and humans have in common. Where the greatest improvement still lies is in recreating the characters to even more closely resemble their television animation counterparts. There are individual frames that are very good, and then there are ones that are not. One thing I, and others, have commented they would certainly like to see is change of clothes among the human characters. Comic medium allows for a far smoother transition of wardrobe changing as the days pass in story time. Xanatos with a tie? Owen in something besides a blue blazer jacket? It should remain in character, but it would add much more realism to the world.
Having the sudden orange background behind Vinnie while he is fighting is a nice change from the dark, it certainly enhances the ongoing violence, but the lack of any shading makes it look a bit as though the fighters were suddenly facing off in an all-orange room. The linework gets stronger towards the end of the issue, but the coloring isn't dynamic enough, and it doesn't match the linework in places. ..............next -->
Another small complaint is to who is the Letterist. Castaway’s final parting, “Dream of me” declaration should have been larger, mimicking more the emphasis of his screaming, “Traitor!” Since this will be the last issue that we have an actual voice to put the words to it will be even more pertinent in the future to create the right mood with the written word. I have no doubt in Greg’s writing, I can only hope the person who puts them to page feels the writing as much as sees it. Overall it was an excellent execution of the story. We have great faith in the coming stories and even have been informed that there will be guest artist to offer their talents. The rest is what it always has been, up to us as the fans and consumers to buy, promote, and enjoy. The market is there, it just needs to be made aware.
Next issue will be the first non-fanfic Gargoyles story created in almost 10 years!