Writers: Simon Roy & Daniel Benson
Artist: Artyom Trakhanov
Colorist: Jason Wordie
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Song: Pay the Price by Deltron 3030
It seems as though my comic picks for this week all had one tone to them. Blood. This issue of Protector is no exception. Where issue one felt like an establishing shot, setting the stage for Roy and Benson’s post-apocalyptic world, Issue 2 feels like both the writers and Trakhanov go ahead and give us a little taste of what’s to come with a bit of muscle-flexing encompassing an entire issue.
Issue 2 kicks off with a buddy movie moment, picking up where we last left Mari and her new metal-skinned best friend. The dialogue between the two gives us some insight as to where (and when) the Robot came from while also having Mari give us a brief religious history lesson of her people and time period. It’s also revealed that both Mari and the giant may be fulfilling an ancient prophecy from her people's belief system, resulting in an explosive revelation.
Now, the first issue also introduced us to the First Knife. An older gentleman who’s bad-ass name comes with matching mustache. During his portion of the story-arc, we are also given a brief history of his tribe’s lore. One where his predecessor kills a demon with, you guessed it, a knife. A knife bearing the same markings our Giant Robot, how important the knife becomes remains to be seen. The conclusion of the issue follows a bloody raid on Shikka-Go. The raiding party that accompanies the First Knife is an efficient one until it’s met with our Giant Robot and Mari.
This second issue was definitely an exciting one with a lot more action, resulting in a faster pace for the comic itself. The three key players in this story are finally face-to-face and the pace of the story is in a good place with an excellent cliffhanger of a conclusion. Where the story goes and what else gets revealed is definitely gonna be a sight to see. How I feel about all this s far gives me the feels similar to what Katsuhiro Otomo and Izo Hashimoto’s Akira gave me a long time ago. It’s kinda like a love letter addressed to Neo-Tokyo, based in the post-apocalyptic world of North America. The art is bold and, like I said previously, a modern take on Japanese Ukiyo-e art style that is vibrantly beautiful, as well as gritty and graphic when it needs to be. All-in-all, this issue was great and definitely a turn around from the foundation building first issue.