Fight Club 2 #6 is a standout issue in an already-great series. Palahniuk and Stewart take this opportunity, just past the midpoint of the series, to remind everyone that Fight Club is not about senseless violence or about revolution—not really. The series is about the things that make our culture great and the ways we twist them to make our culture nasty. The issue begins, as everything in post-Vietnam America does, with the assassination of John F. Kennedy, before we find out what really happened to Sebastian after last issue’s Space Monkey mission. The issue does a lot of twisting and revealing, but ultimately, we’re left with a new understanding of who (and what) Tyler Durden is and how he relates to Sebastian, and we have a clearer picture of what is going to happen for the back half of the series.
Fight Club does its best work when Palahniuk takes a detour, not necessarily for story reasons, or any direct relationship to what’s happening, but more to speak to a thematic arc of the series. The “Who Would You Fight?” sequences in the movie come to mind as the kind of palate-cleansers that the story supports very well, and the JFK sequence at the beginning of this issue is a standout example. Taking the device from earlier issues of obscuring the art with objects and things that confuse the issue (pills, flowers, etc.), the issue begins with a double page spread where part of the action is obscured by the Zapruder film. I love the spread, on a lot of levels, not the least of which is the amount of obscuring of history the actual Zapruder film has led to—it’s a brilliant thematic touch, and gives a more interesting way to wake Sebastian up.
Stewart’s art is amazing, as per usual. He’s been pushing the boundaries with every issue, and this one is no exception, playing with flashbacks and diagrams in a way that makes the artifice clear. Fight Club is the most fun when it’s a well-built machine with a clear case, an unstoppable engine where you can see all the parts move. This is a world where there are rules, and you may not understand them all, but you can see them all in their effects on the characters.
I don’t know how much more I can say about this series to influence people to pick it up. It’s a tough row to hoe, as it’s a ten-issue series that won’t be collected until next May, and judging by the availability in the store where I work, it’s getting super tough to find issues one and two. This is a series that deserves to be read from the beginning, that you should re-read every month before it comes out. It’s so dense and novelistic, which makes for a satisfying way to spend four bucks every month, but I’m not sure the pace lends itself to monthly releasing. I suppose all that is to say: if you can find all six issues, buy them. Drop the $24 and spend an evening getting reacquainted with the world’s favorite violent, dissociative cultural meme disease and his gleeful gang of Space Monkeys. You won’t regret it.
Fight Club 2 #6 Writer: Chuck Palahniuk Artist: Cameron Stewart Colorist: Dave Stewart Letterer: Nate Piekos of Blambot Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 10/28/15 Format: Mini-Series; Print/Digital