Review: Crossover #2
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Donny Cates
Artist: Geoff Shaw
Colors: Dee Cunniffe
Letters: John J. Hill
Reviewed by: Seth Singleton
The believable love story of Ellie and Ryan is further stretched by their opposite desires. How can Ryan complete his mission directive from a secret government organization if it puts him in direct opposition to Ellie who only wants to reunite Ava with her parents? Oh, and maybe go inside the dome.
Positives — Comic Book Cameos
Comic book writers are dying and going missing, and it’s all connected to a dome and the radical change did the world now that superheroes no longer live only in comic books. Brian K. Vaughn is dead. Scott Snyder, Chip Zdarsky, and Robert Kirkman are among the missing. Making this all feel so much like a comic book story is the reporter looking into the camera on page one Bears a striking resemblance to Lois Lane. Sharp-eyed readers will enjoy the response from comic book shop owner Otto who says, “BKV?! …’ Marvel writer’ really?”
Last issue, Donny Cates, toyed with the far-reaching implications of the series by suggesting the role of a figure that looks an awful lot like DC Comics’ Superman helping people break into what we would consider the real. Things get taken a bit further when the mysterious director reveals that there is a Holding Center what are those not trapped in the dome are experimented on and encouraged to provide information.
Eagle-eyed readers would do well to pay close attention to the colorful arms hanging out of prison bars and potentially identifying a few legendary comic book characters from DC Comics, Marvel Comics, and a few others. How many did this reviewer see? That hand stays close to the chest.
Positives — Opposing Forces
Equally enjoyable is the discovery made by Ellie and Otto that non-super-powered citizens are also being held in concentration camps. They are being experimented on. Those that survived come back changed. Others simply do not come back at all.
Donny Cates has done a wonderful job setting up two opposing forces while confidently suggesting that this is all part of what will lead them to a romance or love story. The beauty of the art in this issue continues the wonderful impossibility that opened issue number one. The strange purple crackling closed Dome, the wonderful layers of pixelation on the face of Ava in speculating the features of those heroes and villains held captive.
Critiquing this and looking for errors is like trying to complain about a magnificent work of art. It’s possible to find “flaws” but doing so will appear petty.
Not only has Donny Cates been able to raise the specter of what would happen if superheroes came into the real world but along the way. He’s doing that amazing job of asking us what it means to be a hero. Ellie does a wonderful job of confronting Otto about this and it sounds and feels like an echo of all those late-night conversations nerds might have when talking about how we can emulate the heroes we immortalize.
Donny Cates has suggested the crossover will do more and then bring superheroes into the actual world. The knowledge that this story is designed to brush against other worlds separated by that invisible membrane known as imagination, continuity, and universe adds to the heightened sensation that this is a story about comic book fans. That it is in fact a love story. One that is both to and for comics. Get smitten.