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Time Keeps on Slippin’ (Canto II: The Hallow Men #1 Review)


Writer: David M. Booher

Artist: Drew Zucker

Colorist: Vittorio Astone

Letterer: Deron Bennett

Editor: David Mariotte

Publisher: IDW Publishing

Rating: 9/10

At the end of the yellow brick road, Dorothy and the gang meet the Great Oz and found the answers they we are all looking for and Dorothy, a way home. The story ended there and only to be followed by its subsequent sequel(s) and a prequel that fell short to re-capture the magic of that is and was the place somewhere over the rainbow. It was disappointing and unnecessary. I guess the same could be said about most sequels. We didn’t need The Dark Knight Strikes Again. We don’t need a sequel to V for Vendetta. To be quite honest, we didn’t need a sequel to Canto. “Why is that?’ you ask? Well, let me be clear: Canto, in my honest opinion, was a perfectly told self-contained story that ended in a way where I felt that it was complete. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I don’t want a follow-up, I was more or less satisfied with this wonderful tale of a Clockwork Knight’s quest to restore his love's heart and the hope that he instilled in his once-enslaved people to rise up against their oppressors to finally find the freedom they truly deserved. But after reading this first issue in David Booher, Drew Zucker, Vittorio Astone, and Deron Bennett’s second story arc of our brave little Canto, I’m glad they decided to give us this sequel.

Canto’s story carries on immediately after where the first one ends. The Clockwork Knights have found their freedom in New Arcana, a self-sustaining little community alongside their new Malorex companions. Training for the imminent return of the Shrouded Man, all is almost all too perfect and Canto is weary that his community is unprepared for the battle that is to come. We are introduced 3 new Knights who seem to have comparable personalities to that of Canto himself. They all partake in a Malorex race through the woods in which they reside. But shortly after their brief moment of happiness, they are met with a revelation when the clock-heart of one their own just suddenly stops and this is the catalyst of Canto’s new adventure.

What can I say? I have a soft spot in my own heart for this little guy. The momentum of this story doesn’t seem to be losing any steam and this first issue just gave me a reminder of all the feels I experienced when I read the first volume just a few months ago. The theme of bravery and heart is still the strongest tone in Booher’s writing, Drew Zucker still sets the tone with excellent new character designs for our hero’s new companions, Vittorio Astone’s colors still bing the world to life with vibrant colors and settings, and I can't stress enough the jab in the heart that Deron Bennett’s lettering gave me when I the Tick-Tock bubbles began to fade in one particular panel. Needless to say, I’m glad that no roster change has been made and everyone from the original story is back to continue this wonderful tale.

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