The debut of Rorschach was an interesting one. As a political thriller and crime comic, it works quite well. As a follow-up to Watchmen, the comic is a bit mixed. Its connection feels like it could easily be swapped out for other random characters. It’s currently tenuous at best. Rorschach #2 dives further into the mystery of the attempted assassination. The investigation, and issue, focuses on Wil Myerson, a reclusive artist known for his pirate comics.
As far as a “crime” comic focused on the investigation, it’s a fine entry. Writer Tom King has shown in the first two issues he has a deft handling of the genre. It’s one it’d be interesting to see him do more of. The comic as a tie-in to Watchmen is a bit looser and in that way, it stumbles a bit. Still, like many of King’s works, this is a series that’ll be best measured on its whole than individual parts.
And part of that stumbling is what feels like an attempt to shoe-horn in some concepts. The fact that Myerson is a creator on pirate comics, tiptoeing around the pirate story within a story of the original, doesn’t come off so much as a wink and no as it does a replay of part of what made the original work so well. Here too sees a story within a story. It’s full of morality and deeper messaging begging to be examined and dissected. While the execution is impressive the inclusion feels a little pretentious and a rehash of what was done before.
Jorge Fornés‘ art is commendable though. Along with color by Dave Stewart and lettering by Clayton Cowles, the comic within a comic in Rorschach #2 is impressive. That alone makes the comic worth checking out. From the design of those pages to the details of the dialogue, the section of the comic pops and stands out as the best thing from the first two issues. There’s still an issue where the design of the characters and world doesn’t fit the time period. While it matches the first issue, it’s in contrast with the television shows’ more modern style, even though they both are in the same world. Rorschach #2 continues to look like the 1970s in style and design.
As far as a sequel to Watchmen, Rorschach #2 falls a little short and feels like it’s connection is currently shoehorned in. But, as a crime comic, Rorschach #2 is a solid entry taking us through a detective attempting to figure out a puzzle and piecing together what’s presented before him. Like the first issue, I’m enjoying more for that aspect than anything having to do with the world it takes place in. In that way, Rorschach has its own duality in the story, whether that’s intended or not.
Story: Tom King Art: Jorge Fornés
Color: Dave Stewart Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.95 Art: 9.0 Overall: 7.99 Recommendation: Buy
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review