Friday, October 15, 2010

The Umbrella Academy Vol. 2: Dallas

Written by Gerard Way
Art by Gabriel Bá

Having just read the first volume of Umbrella Academy, the over-the-top superhero saga drawn by Gabriel Bá and written by some rock star who has become a bit of a comics darling, I quickly decided to read the second volume

Dallas would never be able to stand on its own, as very little is introduced or explained here, but it is a pretty enjoyable replacement for Grant Morrison's wonderful Doom Patrol run.

In this book, the surviving members of the team are all in worse places than they were at the start of the series (there is a general sense of lingering injury, depression, and discontent).  Number Five, the member of the team who has returned to the present after a lengthy sojourn in the future, has some unfinished business that soon embroils the whole team in a plot to assassinate (or protect) JFK in Texas in 1963.  The plot is hard to follow, but it does allow for a number of very cool moments.

As with the first book, the main appeal to me was Bá's artwork.  It's interesting how, on a title like Daytripper, he keeps such tight control over his characters' environments, but with this book, he's able to really go wild.  There are very interesting designs, and crazy scenes, like the one where Kraken and Spaceboy fight vampires and a giant mummy in the middle of the Vietnam War.

I'm not sure if this title is going to continue, but I'll definitely be on board for any future installments.

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