By Dustin Cabeal
It’s not Kurtis J. Wiebe’s fault that the magic isn’t there for Rat Queens anymore. The industry loved this creator-owned darling and copied the shit out it in numerous ways. The delays were unfortunate, but not a deal breaker. It’s just that when you pair the both of these two factors together, the magic just isn’t there anymore. A series I championed and loved that I own a shirt of is just not the same after so many setbacks.
This issue had one funny moment and only one. There were a few tender moments as well, but nothing that was so overwhelmingly good that it would raise the bar of the series. They continue to fight the bird monster. There’s banter, they succeed a bit too easily and then it’s off to the bar to talk way too much and rush into the next adventure.
Betty is the saving grace of this issue, but at the same time, it feels as if Betty has been reduced to the comedic sidekick again. Her arc in the first volume in which she had to pick love or friends and think about if they were her friends or not, was a great character arc for her. One that has yielded nothing since for the character. She’s back to just being funny and stabby. It works for her, but when the rest of the characters are constantly diving into rich backstories that have followed them into the present, it makes her character feel weak and out of place.
Much like with my review of the first issue, I’m not a fan of Owen Gieni’s art on this series. It’s not a great match which is a shame. Also, Gieni’s facial expressions for the humor is a too cornball. Rat Queens thrives in its subtle nature, but when the writer or art breaks that it is glaring. While Gieni colors his own work quite well, it’s a style that doesn’t match the pre-existing look of the series. Granted, it’s a reboot/new volume, but it’s hard to erase that expectation. To put it another way, I don’t know if I would be as inclined to re-buy my Rat Queens shirt with Gieni’s art and coloring on it.
It’s tough to say if I’ll be back more for this series. Perhaps I’ll read it and not review it, or maybe it’ll inspire another review. As it is though, it’s average, boarding on forgettable and that’s unfortunate for a series that was once so incredible. It’s one of comic’s tragedies that we’ll all read about on a list in the future.
Rat Queens v2 #2
Shadowline Comics/Image Comics