Outsiders #2 is published by DC Comics, written by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly, art by Robert Carey, colors by Valentina Taddeo, and letters by Tom Napolitano. The exploratory team ventures to the middle of the ocean, only to find a group of monster hunters seeking their own glory.
Each issue of this series, at least at this early stage, is its own unique story. And each one is an adventure into parts unknown, even within the heartily explored DC Universe. The comic continues to be adverse to regular superhero antics, even actively trying to avoid it within this issue. This is a mission that contains mentions of monsters and Atlanteans, and yet it doesn’t want to be drawn into a fight. That is not to say there aren’t any, just that the heroes do not want it. There is always the attention to move, to travel deeper, very deep in this case, as the Outsiders move down to the sea bed.
There’s a beautiful plot within the issue. What is so impressive is how Kelly and Lanzing can purely suggest what has happened. Cataloguing these huge events does not mean we get to understand everything that happened, but the imagination can go wild about what did. The other force that the Outsiders find is a huge surprise, but it is more than just a cameo. They are the opposite of what the heroic trio stands for. They want to destroy and collect instead of preserve and protect. There is an intensity to the issue, with the threat of something disastrous happening always hanging in the air. The ending is a powerful piece of writing that resonates more than what a shootout would.
The characters and the dialogue are fantastic. Initially, it seemed like the trio would be too light. But actually, that’s exactly what the series requires. Their personalities are huge, but the setting and character of the locations they are investigating are also part of the cast. More voices could drown out that awe. Batwing and the Drummer are big parts of the series, but Batwoman is inarguably the star of the show. It is she who takes the most risks, driving the team to investigate further, beyond what is safe. With less violence, the dialogue has to be the action, and that is achieved superbly. The speeches at the end are stunning, thoughtful, and powerful.
The art is phenomenal. The Outsiders encounter something that is a mix of eldritch horror and DC’s capability for carnage. The scale is awe-inspiring. The first page alone is a description of monstrous madness, serving as a potential precursor to come. The Outsiders #2 has a terrific blend of peace and panic. Under the water, in the darkness, the emptiness of the water is invaded by mechs, ships, and weapons of war. The military might on display creates the suggestion that it’s only a matter of time before it is used.
The colors are also very interesting. There is luscious, vibrant light in the early parts of the comic, but that is soon relinquished. Once below the surface, the deeper blue threatens to consume the team. To alleviate that growing darkness, the other panels of the page are inside the submersible. This is baked in a deep red, contrasting nicely with the with the blue. The lettering is flawless and effortless to read.
Outsiders #2 is refreshing. It steps away from the regular life of a superhero, battling in wars or against criminals within the same city, with violence that can often seem repetitive. This series instead seeks to do it another way. There’s a new location every week, some brand new contribution to the DC Universe that hints at hidden histories. The characters are important, but they pale when compared to the scale of their discoveries, which are presented through an unbelievable art team.
Outsiders #2 is available where comics are sold.
Outsiders #2 is refreshing. The characters are important, but they pale when compared to the scale of their discoveries, which are presented through an unbelievable art team.