Review: Pearl #2

[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis

Art and Cover: Michael Gaydos

 

Summary

The recent incident with the Yakuza brought Pearl in deeper than she had ever intended.  Now, as the Yakuza pressures her to get more involved, and the strange boy from the mall comes by looking for answers, where will Pearl turn? Possibly into her past…

Positives

DC is currently selling two comics that I believe would be just as powerful with only the art.  One is Tom King’s Mister Miracle with art from Mitch Gerads.  The other is Pearl.. There is such powerful visual storytelling on display here, and it is done through such a great variety of color, paneling, tones and textures.  Pearl herself is a fairly emotionless person. A lot of her dialogue, especially in the current day, is very matter of fact, and almost monotone.  Her emotions are only revealed through the art around her.  As she learns more and more about the art of tattooing, color gets added to the beige and tan surrounded her enriching her life. In the current day when she is lost and doesn’t know how to move forward, the story is told in a soft and deep blue.  As chaos ensues when she has to kill her targets, a myriad of colors light up the page.  All of those choices, all of the deliberate paneling, like when her arm crosses over multiple panels, and all of the unique designs represented in the tattoos are done so purposefully and convey very specific messages.  The meaning the art conveys in this comic is truly one of the reasons I love comics.

The writing is also done quite well.  There are many conversations that carry a lot of meaning beyond the words that are being said, and the word choice needs to be very deliberate in order to accomplish that.  After last issue, I was very unsure of the pacing, order, and relation of the events in the story.  I got a lot of the answers I needed in Pearl #2.  The events fit together in a way that makes sense now.   I’ve also begun to understand how small this story really is.  A lot is told in this issue through very little action, and I very much admire the amount of meaning Gaydos and Bendis able to convey through a story that is very small and very personal.

 

Negatives

There us true excellence on display here, and I highly recommend everyone give it a try.  There are no negatives from me in this issue.

Verdict

I didn’t think I would enjoy a crime drama told through this medium, but I could not have been more wrong.  Pearl is only two issues in, and it is already one of my favorite miniseries ever.

 

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Ari Bard

I am currently a Sophomore at Case Western Reserve University studying mechanical engineering. I have been in love with DC since I saw the animated series and movies in the early 2000s. I started reading comics regularly at the start of Rebirth. My favorite character is Martian Manhunter.