By Joshua Ortega (Writer), Liam Sharp (Artist), and Johnny Rench (Colorist)
Some Thoughts Before The Review: Common sense leads one to the understanding that you shouldn’t go into a Gears comic expecting something exceptional. With that in mind, I found myself pleasantly surprised by how successfully Gears of War #1 brought the game’s world and conflict to the comic page. Now the question is whether or not a plot can be developed well enough to make the series worth picking up each month.
The Story: The squad fights back against the Locust ambush that began last issue, and then heads back to base for some down time. The break in the action allows the book to focus on character work for a bit before throwing the soldiers back into the fray. I wish I could say a bit more concerning the story, but that’s about all that happens in this one.
What’s Good: When the book focuses on the action and tough-guy personalities, it works extremely well. The artwork effectively brings the violence and war-torn environments to the page, something that I still find a bit surprising. As for the writing, I have to applaud the fact that I could easily imagine John DiMaggio reciting nearly every line of Marcus Fenix dialogue. Sure it’s standard tough-guy, action movie stereotype type stuff, but it is what I expected and (in some ways) hoped for. Simply put, the book delivers the Gears of War experience pretty well. If that sounds appealing to you in any way, then I am sure you will find something to like here.
What’s Not So Good: The attempts to give the characters depth feel forced and, as such fall pretty flat. It doesn’t work all that well in the game and the same goes for the comic. Also worth mentioning is how little actually happens in this issue. I still can’t figure out if a plot is being developed or how any of the events are crucial to the story in Gears of War 2.
Conclusion: Gears of War #2 delivers some good action and style, but it’s severely lacking in the substance department. While it is undoubtedly a fun read for fans of the game, I question whether it really deserves the $3.99 price tag. Something big needs to happen in the next issue to prove that this comic is really something a fan should bother investing in.