Review: Dead Future King #2

The adventures of King Arthur and Merlin in the near future zomb-pocalypse continues as our cast expands with both heroes and villains, though predictably not a plethora of answers. Is this fledgling post-Walking Dead zombie series still worth your time? Well, if you were engaged in the first issue there isn't much here that will likely shake you off. The art is still basic, but good, with fewer opportunities to really shine like it did in the first issue, as this one is mostly conversations and hiding. It won't jump off the convention table at you, but it's more professional than most indies.

Dead Future King #2 Cover 9.26.14Again, the writing is the weak spot. Fortunately for us, the constant narration is gone, replaced instead with constant exposition. You can't blame it for that, since its issue two of a story that is only really just now getting established, but where the writing in the last issue seemed a bit pretentious, in this issue its weakest moments are unintentionally funny.

In one scene Arthur is confused by Merlin's vague explanation of his sudden resurrection. This leads Merlin to try and use a car engine as a metaphor. Arthur, of course, has no idea what a car is, so Merlin tries to demonstrate by turning the car on. Even this fails, as the car is broken, leading to the rest of the exposition delivered while Merlin fixes the car, allowing him to clumsily segue into introducing Arthur to modern technology so our hero isn't constantly asking what things are later. This might sound like a clever and funny way kill multiple exposition birds with one stone, but almost all of this scene seems to be played as if nothing that is happening is actually really, really funny, which is either a failure of the art and pacing to communicate comedy or just strange bad writing. Again, the book isn't broken by this, but I laughed a number of times during my reading at things I don't think I was supposed to, and our wise sage Merlin really comes off sometimes like a doddering moron who only commands respect thanks to his astounding sense of self importance.

A few small plot wrinkles show up, one in relation to the zombies that both had me nodding my head with approval and realizing that this direction diminishes the point of the book even having zombies as its core gimmick. Still, the cast and world are only just starting to open up in this issue, so if you have a spontaneous craving for a book where Excalibur whacks off heads of the undead, pick up an issue and get started.

Score: 2/5

Writer/Artist: David R. Flores Publisher: [Sic] Monkie/Alterna Price: $1.99 Website