Comic Book Review: The Black Order #2
Here we are again with one of my favorite debuts from Marvel this year. There’s something about the name of this team that just calls for excitement. These are villains who embrace the despicable things they do without a need for sympathy or to be humanized. The Black Order #1 made sure that message drove home. That is something to appreciate these days. The kind of story that is worth giving a miniseries to.
I found myself very anxious to see what the second issue had in store for the Black Order. It goes without saying that this is a team that you aren’t used to seeing with their backs against the wall. Not that they haven’t been defeated before, but they tend to give you the impression that it would take a lot to overcome their strength. How this issue picked up from the last was exciting since not everything was as it seemed about the situation that they found themselves in. The first issue ended one way, but began with a very different outcome to that encounter in mind. What came after was just as exciting considering the way that this team sprang into action in a way that is contrasting to their normal combat styles. The approach was commendable for the sake of establishing their battle experience in general. How things actually went south for the Black Order came quick and with excellent execution too. When you think of turning the tables on the likes of them, that was clever.
How they got themselves out of this jam was a bit convenient, but it was where this development led them that mattered most. For only the second issue, this story took big leaps forward in evolving the motivations of the Black Order. They went from one simple goal on the orders of the Grandmaster, and took on aspirations much grander.
Where the first issue took us on a journey into the mind of Corvus Glaive, this second issue switched things up for us to get the same kind of perspective from Proxima Midnight. There’s something to appreciate about her distinct voice in contrast to the other members of the Black Order. Everything about Promixa Midnight tends to come down to the thrill of war and the kill. This was our time to find out why exactly that would be. Not that this was too in-depth about it, but we got the gist of what motivates this war machine of one. She was the perfect choice for the drastic change in direction that this team took too. When you think of their bolder moves, Proxima is most likely the one who gets the wheels turning. It was refreshing to see how they could go from assassination to something very unexpected.
I was shocked how quickly the art would change for this miniseries. When I picked up this book it caught me off guard to see an extra name pop up that wasn’t there before. There was a bit of fear for how this would reflect in the interiors since half of the issue could have easily been one style, and then switch. It could have also just been one of those deals where an extra hand pops in to do a flashback scene. To see that they actually switched off after only a few pages worked for me better than the alternatives. I’m also new to the work of Harvey Tolibao, so I was blown away by the quality of work that he puts into his pencils. There was a big step up in quality and definition that went into the characters, settings, and everything else in-between. I felt a stronger engagement in the action sequences, and the colorists were given a lot more room to get in-depth on their end as well. A lot of the colors they were able to give us made this issue pop. Especially when there was plenty more characters and weapons introduced to shake things up.
The Black Order #2 changed everything that you thought you knew about the direction that this series was taking. Once this team jumped into their mission, it was a steady rise in intensity, action, stakes, all leading to a decision that could elevate these five to a place where they have never been before. The only question is if they can see this plan through to the end, and if they are willing to defy the roles they are so accustomed to.