Black Cotton #2 recaps the tragic event of a white woman named Elizabeth Nightingale being wrongfully profiled and shot by a Black police officer name Zion Cotton. Usually, whenever we hear of a tragic story about a person being shot by cops, people post inspirational memes, plan a funeral, or protest. But what happens to the victim if they survive? For those individuals lucky enough to live on after such a fatal encounter with police, Black Cotton #2 gives an interesting perspective of what that scenario would look like. Black Cotton #2 is another solid issue that talks about privilege, accountability, and the things people with authority are unwilling to do to rectify a situation.
The greatest part about Black Cotton #2 is that it doesn’t start a conversation about racial injustice in America, but instead, it reinforces the fact that it’s been an ongoing issue. For the most part, the second issue sees how the wealthy Cotton family of Zion Cotton, the police officer who shot Elizabeth, deals with the fallout of the outcry for justice for Elizabeth. We’re given two different perspectives — the first is Zion training at the gym and going about his business, and the second is Elizabeth and her family dealing with the trauma and mental effects that Zion’s actions have caused. The main thing that writer Brian Hawkins’s script emphasizes is that you can’t just throw money at your problems or try to place societal blame when it comes to racial injustice.
Complementing Hawkins’s writing are some phenomenally illustrated moments by Marco Perugini. The way he captures intense and powerful panels, like when Elizabeth is standing in line to pay for her items but the cashier is staring her down, is classic. Aside from that, he has a great eye for character design and placement. You can feel the raw emotions beaming from his characters, whether it’s the Cottons or Elizabeth and her family. The black and white tone just adds the finishing touch.
When you’re talking about a comic that relates to current real-world issues, Black Cotton is as relevant as it gets. The story is deep and hopefully will make readers open up to the world around them. The climax leaves us with a surprising cliffhanger, so it’ll be interesting to see how the story unfolds next. If there’s one comic you should be talking about, it’s Black Cotton #2.
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