Blackbird #2 Forges Modern Mythology

by Tony Thornley

Last month, I described Blackbird as an urban fantasy story. After reading issue #2, I realized that might be a misnomer. It’s more like urban mythology.

Blackbird #2

Sam Humphries, and Jen Bartel, with Paul Reinwald on layouts, Triona Farrell on color art, Jodi Wynne on letters, and Dylan Todd doing design work, continue world-building in this issue. It’s mostly tantalizing breadcrumbs, but what breadcrumbs are they.

Nina’s sister has been taken by the feline dragon-like creature on the issue’s cover. Her only lead is the young man she encountered just before Marisa disappeared–a wizard-like being called a Paragon. She dives in headfirst, finding Clint the Paragon, but also drawing the attention of an assassin!

Blackbird #2

Bartel and Reinwald’s work really brings this world to life. It reminds me of The Wicked + The Divine but more dreamy and a little more surreal. There are also a few great moments of action, as Nina starts to discover magic around her.

Humphries forges Nina into an interesting, if not completely likeable, protagonist. Her actions are rash, and she’s a major mess, but she’s a mess that we want to see succeed. He also lays the groundwork for a grand world just outside of our view, with a different take on magic and demigods from what we’ve normally seen.

Farrell jumped into color art with this issue, and meshes perfectly with what’s already been established. She uses a pastel-tinged palette that adds to the fantastic and surreal nature of Bartel’s art. It really looks great.

This is one of the most promising creator-owned launches this year, and I really look forward to the rest of the series.

Blackbird #2 is available now from Image Comics.

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