Harry Potter has made this world crazy for magic and if The Magicians on SyFy is any indication we aren’t done with the genre yet. This new series brings magic to a very different United States who won World War 2 due to wizards. The first issue introduced our protagonist and world which makes this issue all about progressing the plot…is it good?
Gutter Magic #2 (IDW)
IDW’s solicit reads:
A showdown at the Goblin Market puts Cinder and Blacktooth on the path to tracking down their quarry – but the necromantic sorceress known as the Morgue wants Cinder’s head, even if she has to threaten his family to get it. Fans of Harry Potter and Sin City will love this genre-bending caper that brings magic down to the gritty streets of New York!
Why does this book matter?
Cinder and Blacktooth were well written characters you can instantly relate to, but above all else Rich Douek has written a very vivid and well built world. After only one issue I wanted to know more about this world because it seems so robust with all its magical rules, but also how it differs from our own. Artist Brett Barkley also brings a detailed look that makes the world feel more literal.
It’s like a western!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
We are in the second issue of a four part series which focuses on building up the big bad villain but does so with plenty of developments with other characters too. Said villain is gracing the cover and her name is Morgue (do bad guys give themselves these names or were her parents just angling for her to be super evil?). Douek connects her to Cinder’s family rather quickly, but doesn’t give us every detail which makes her and Cinder’s brother more compelling. You’ll want to know more about the characters, but also their relationships.
Douek opens the issue where we left off with our heroes between a rock and a hard place which helps kick the action up before the exposition and plot progression start. Overall the issue has a great pace with many surprises and a good amount of varying scenes to keep things interesting. A flashback helps add some context to Cinder’s relationship to his brother and a fun scene precludes that with a funeral home owner who has mystic abilities. Bottom line is this comic picks you up and takes you on a ride.
Barkley’s art continues to be strong albeit there are no awesome double or full page spreads in this issue. Something that really pumped up the last issue was the magic spells being cast which don’t pop up here. That said the character faces are consistent, their emotions are easy to follow and the world around them looks real with lots of good detail added in.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Save for the lack of magic in this issue there isn’t much to gripe about. The art might be a bit rough for those who are used to more streamlined cel-shaded type books, but that’s a personal preference issue more than anything.
Is It Good?
You’ll read this and think, “why isn’t this a movie yet?”