Saturday, June 11, 2016

Worth The Wait

Product: Joyride #2
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Writer(s): Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly
Artist(s): Marcus To
Colorist: Irma Kniivila
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Price: $3.99 (US)
Page Count: 30, including ads and front and back inside covers

Welcome back travellers. Joyride #2 is out and in it we get to learn a lot more about our protagonists and the universe they're exploring. This issue starts in media res as Dewydd's parents get an awkward, semi-unwelcome visit from a government official about their son's new status as an Aberrant. The scene quickly flashes over to Dewydd, Catrin and Uma, who are up to their necks in trouble on an alien space station, thanks to Uma's sticky fingers.

To throw the pursuing security guards off, the trio splits up with Uma using a dive bar as her bolt hole and Catrin and Dewydd taking shelter in an alien fashion emporium. Uma quickly finds herself under the protective wing of an alien thief calling himself Kolstak the Wander (That name sounds familiar, doesn't it? ;) and we learn that humankind's reputation is pretty bad in the universe's eyes - in fact, it's much worse than the pathos-evoking reputation we get in Titan AE. Flashing back to Catrin and Dewydd, Catrin learns a valuable lesson about herself after being confronted by an alien with an alluring offer. We also see the questionable results of Dewydd's alien makeover and learn he has a skeleton in his closet beyond his familial ties to the government.

Back at the bar, Uma engages in some creative mayhem to bust out of the security cordon with Kolstak in tow, sacrificing her recently acquired loot in the process. The group meets up, beats a hasty retreat to the ship and engages in more creative mayhem in an effort to shake off pursuing starfighters. Unfortunately, their efforts have an unintended side effect, leaving them stranded in a dangerous part of space. The issue ends on a cliffhanger as we see Special Interceptors - special agents of the World Government Alliance - preparing to hunt down our heroes, and we learn just how far up the food chain Catrin's parents really are.

Overall, Joyride #2 is an excellent follow-up to the debut issue. The pace slows a bit in jumping between scenes, but picks up again toward the end before leaving us hanging on the cliff's edge. In case you hadn't heard the news or didn't notice the change in numbering on the cover, Joyride is now going to be an ongoing series. This is really good news, as four issues is really not enough to cover a joyride through an entire galaxy (as compared to Spanner's Galaxy, a six-issue limited series which left off with Polaris Spanner getting ready to pursue the man who harassed him throughout the series).

This series is definitely hitting all the right buttons for me as well as the big green nostalgia button in me. If you're looking for a series to jump into this summer, Joyride is definitely it - just get a hold of the first two issues, put your feet up and enjoy the ride.

WRITER'S NOTE: As it stands, I haven't decided if I'm going to continue reviewing the series beyond the first four issues. Why? Because while I love the series, I have a lot of projects and other things to write about in the future. Additionally, my previous review didn't generate as much interest as my gaming material, but we'll see what the future holds...

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