As you may have seen in my last review, the first issue of Final Crisis Aftermath: Ink was a surprise favorite of mine. Yes, it’s cliche that the new African American superhero has to deal with gang violence in the ghetto, but comics fans have long since learned that there’s nothing new under the sun: what matters is how you tell it. And Ink #1 was told with style. You’ll be pleased to know, then, that #2 continues that trend.
After a bumpy opening detailing a little about the origin of Mark Richards – an origin we didn’t particularly need, with too little space to make it interesting – we get back into the meat of things: Mark’s tattoos are operating independent of him. He doesn’t know why. He doesn’t know how. All he knows is, there’s something big going down and he can’t trust his powers to help him deal with it.
Fiorentino and Dimotta still provide slightly muddied, but generally gorgeously painted interior art. They shine most notably in the book’s generally well-handled action scenes. The dramatic tension of some scenes doesn’t come out quite as well as it might under a clearer art team, but it rarely impacts the read as a whole.
The book still deals heavily with gang violence and corrupt cops, and I’m completely fine with that. It’s part of the genre as a whole, and it’s a relatively realistic threat for a character who grew up in a poor neighborhood. I’m not sure how well, necessarily, Wallace deals with some of the gang members as characters, as they’ve come off as perilously one-note thus far, but the book as a whole is good enough to warrant checking out on a monthly basis despite its frequent, minor flaws.
– Cal Cleary
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