Second Chances #1

Ricky Mammone, writer

Max Bertolini, art

DC Hopkins, letters


This story explores the question: How do I make up for poor decisions? It suggests that if we do not find the right answers then the past will come back to bite us. The story begins, the narrator, the adult daughter, as she describes the situation her parents find themselves in as operators of a criminal organization. A flashback sequence shows the father arranging to change identities to buy a second chance at a normal life. However, part of his past follows him to their future. In the present, The daughter leaves her boring job at her parents’ business to follow clues that reveal what her parents have been hiding. The story ends by showing the daughter interrupting the plans of the individual who helped her father at the beginning of the story. 

Some readers could struggle to follow the story as it begins in the past, works toward the present, and ends in the future. As a story device, the flashbacks and flash-forward sequences are useful and add to the mystery. The story is told through the narration of the daughter which helps cut down on predictability and it helps the reader invest in the character. I like the way we did not find out too much about the parents’ criminal activities and how the daughter didn’t know much, as well. I also liked that the daughter is presented as innocent and unaware because it opened up room for the story to use the character in creative ways as she learns about her parents’ past. 

The imagery of these mysterious individuals that attacked the father years ago and befriended the daughter is unique. They appear as a cross between a ninja warrior and a heavy metal rocker. In addition, They appear to have a supernatural flair given that they can jump tall heights, crash through skyscrapers, and not be injured. These panels that show them jump through windows and clear a room of their occupants are interesting because we are to believe that they are killing highly trained criminals. We are not told much about their purpose or their origin, we only know that they are tracking the daughter’s parents’ criminal organization. Not knowing makes me want to know more. The imagery of these characters also encouraged me to stick with the story. 

The writer did a nice job piquing my interest in the premise of the story, which includes the question: Can we overcome past mistakes? The characters are interesting, the story is nicely paced, and moves smoothly from panel to panel. I loved the pencil work and the shading in this issue because it was very detailed and the characters appear true-to-life. I am more interested to learn what is really going on with the criminal organization and what the daughter chooses to do with that information. Overall =  9/10 

I am a licensed clinical social worker and trauma therapist. Comic book heroes have been a passion of mine since I was a small child. However, making the weekly trip to the local comic book store to redeem my pull list has become a regular occurrence only…

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