Review: Horizon: Zero Dawn #2
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Anne Toole
Artist: Ann Maulina
Colorist: Bryan Valenza
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Reviewer: Tony Farina
Alloy and Talanah return in a new story set after the events of the game! Action. Adventure. Giant deadly robots. Fire arrows!
Horizon: Zero Dawn #2 is beautifully drawn. I think that Ann Maulina and Bryan Valenza are the real stars of this short lived series. Readers are not invested enough in the characters yet, so while Toole is fine writer who captures dialogue expertly, it is the art that will bring all the people to this book. I don’t know how anyone can look at one of the many covers or splash pages and not be captivated.
While Valenza uses a small variety of colors, the way he uses them brings the pages to life. I think it must be so fun for Maulina to draw the giant monsters, but it must be even more fun to figure out how to make he humans interact with them. Every little gadget must have purpose. The clothes they wear must have functionality for movement for offense and protection for defense. I spent a lot of time with each panel trying to figure out all the aspects of the way things work.
I was also captivated by the facial expressions. In the above pages, even without the words, you know exactly what each character is thinking in each panel. Smirks, fear, consternation are all on full display. It really does work so well. For the noobs, like me, the art is doing all the work bringing us in and making us care.
Horizon: Zero Dawn #2 is a sequel to a game I have never played. So, for me, this is all new information. It is heavy on stand around exposition this month way more than last month. I suspect, for those who have played the game, a lot of this seems like a re-tread. There is a lot of standing around in this issue. I get it. Sometimes you have to stand around and talk.
Horizon: Zero Dawn #2 is fast and fun. I don’t really feel the stakes of this world in the way the characters do. There are giant robot monsters and people who hunt them. That is pretty exciting. This is the kind of sci-fi that comics were made for. I am pretty excited to see what comes next.