Since its inception, Goddess Mode has come to focus on a core theme: self-empowerment. The ability to not give into the darkness and the despair that plagues the world. That’s a pretty good message, but is it enough to carry Zoe Quinn and Robbi Rodriguez’s seminal Vertigo debut? Well, it’s a bit of a mixed bag.
The synchronization of artist and writer continues to shine. Zoe Quinn could not have a chosen a better artists for this genre. Robbi Rodriguez’s funky future coloring punches you in the face and drags you in for more. Characters look both cartoonish but also realistic and it’s a healthy combination that escapes the uncanny valley.
The world of Goddess Mode continues to be built in many ways as well. There’s the threat of cybernetic demons, Tech millionaires and the overpowering presence of technology in every fiber of modern life. Zoe Quinn’s world continues to grow and grow with each issue, and every little detail in the background paints a dark picture of an oppressive and dark reality with a beautiful digital world beneath it.
In the last issue, the links between Goddess Mode and the magical girl genre blurred significantly until it seemingly vanished by the final page. This issue takes a back seat from magic action and back onto our protagonists, the Tall Poppies. After a brief introduction fight in the digital space of Azoth we are returned to the real world, the Analog, and this is where some problems arise.
At times this issue feels like something SHOULD be going on, but it meanders somewhat on the theme of “not giving in” and doesn’t set the actual stakes of the story. There’s progression and world building but the series doesn’t delve into too many details, even when it might need them. Especially considering the numerous digital messaging effects that might confuse a non-tech savvy reader.
Luckily, Quinn reverses this lull in the last couple pages with a teaser that promises major revelations and a sinister message that heralds some future devastation. Hopefully the coming issues can capture the zaniness and magic of issue #2. Else, this ship risks getting lost in cyberspace.