REVIEW: ‘The Mystery of Ultraseven,’ Issue #2

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The Mystery of Ultraseven #2

The Mystery of Ultraseven #2 is written by Kyle Higgins and Mat Groom, illustrated by Davide Tinto, colored by Espen Grudentjean, and lettered by VC’s Ariana Maher. It’s published by Marvel Comics. With his Ultraman powers having been stolen by Dan Moroboshi — who has now taken the form of Ultraseven — Shin Hayata is at a crossroads. On top of that, he’s experiencing flashbacks to Moroboshi’s encounter with Ultraseven, which apparently resulted in the former’s death. But there’s more to it than that, as Ultraseven’s presence is linked to a conspiracy surrounding the United Science Patrol.

Ever since the beginning of their Ultraman saga, Higgins & Groom have been building out a world that takes everything people know about Ultraman and flips it upside down. The Kaiju don’t just appear from thin air; they’re escaping an alternate dimension that’s struggling at the seams to hold them. The Ultra now serves as a peacekeeping force that battles Kaiju across the galaxy, similar to the Green Lantern Corps. And the USP isn’t the benevolent protectors the world believes them to be. Both writers are no strangers to putting their spin on Toku tropes, especially where the Massiveverse is concerned. Still, it’s great to see that they can utilize this type of storytelling with established characters.

Another element that both writers bring from their time in the Massiveverse is the unconventional narrative. Points in the issue cut back and forth in time between Hayata’s desire to escape from the USP and the bond that forms between Moroboshi and Ultraseven. For me, the latter is the more interesting of the dual plotlines. It shows how two different people can form a close bond under the most chaotic of circumstances. And it serves as a great way to remind readers of what’s transpired in the Ultraman Saga so far. Unlike Hayata and Ultraman, Moroboshi and Ultraman have a deep brotherly bond and experience battling Kaiju — this is reflected in their interactions with each other and their experience in Kaiju limbo.

Tinto’s artwork is also at its best during the past sections. He draws his characters as extremely expressive, especially Moroboshi. Moroboshi’s face falls open in horror once he learns he’s trapped in an alternate dimension. And he often wears a confident smile on his face as he grows used to Ultraseven’s powers. Tinto even manages to find a way to place the entirety of the Ultra’s history in a two-page spread, which is insanely impressive. And, of course, there are the Kaiju battles. Ultraseven sends Kaiju flying with well-placed kicks and punches while also using the environment to his advantage quite literally in some cases.

An important part of any Toku series is the color. Grudentjean steps up to the plate, delivering a blazing bright palette of colors in every scene. There’s the red and silver of Ultraseven’s costume. There’s the radiant golden glow of Ultraseven’s “pure” form, which carries over as he and Moroboshi become a singular being. Said golden glow even carries over into Ultraseven’s words, which Maher depicts as glowing orbs that hover around his head. This bright, vibrant look will make readers feel like they’re actually watching an episode of Ultraman – which was probably the intention.

The Mystery of Ultraseven #2 continues to live up to its title as it peels back the layers of the enigma surrounding its titular hero. The next issue will see Ultraman and Ultraseven face-off, but if this issue is any indication, there’ll be more to their confrontation than your usual superhero dust-up.

The Mystery of Ultraseven #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.


The Mystery of Ultraseven #2
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TL;DR

The Mystery of Ultraseven #2 continues to live up to its title as it peels back the layers of the enigma surrounding its titular hero. The next issue will see Ultraman and Ultraseven face-off, but if this issue is any indication, there’ll be more to their confrontation than your usual superhero dust-up.

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