Riding The Rails In Middlewest #2

by Tony Thornley

After a whirlwind of a first issue (sorry, I had to), Middlewest settles back a little more with world building and plot setting. But that doesn’t mean the quality of the issue dips by any means.

Skottie Young, Jorge Corona, Jean-Francois Beaulieu, and Nate Piekos return this issue with an exciting follow-up to their debut issue. It sets up many threads and pulls back the curtain more on what Middlewest is.

Falling asleep on the train after the events of last issue, Abel and the fox are attacked by a pair of cannibal hobos. An old wizard named Jeb rescue the duo, and leads them to his home. There he tries to treat the wound inflicted on Abel by his father, but realizes there’s so much more to this boy than he realizes…

Young is smartly showing his hand slowly. It’s building a lot of anticipation and drawing me in more and more. Abel is quickly becoming a fascinating protagonist, while the story explores the psychology of an abused child. It’s an impressive balance of epic fantasy and character study.

Corona and Beaulieu’s worth is just as stunning as last issue. The fight scene is engaging and composed in an very exciting way, then immediately afterwards shifts into a wondrous journey through the landscape of Middlewest, ending in the steampunk infused home of Jeb. Beaulieu’s colors step the fantastic visuals from excellent to gorgeous with perfect effects and lighting. It’s all fantastically rendered and composed.

This continues to be my favorite new book and you should pick it up.

Middlewest #2 is available now from Image Comics.

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