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Forward! The March of Reviews: Jog is twirling a baton for 10/3, twirl twirl around

Joe McCulloch

The last parade I saw in person stalled when a surprise thunderstorm rolled in and knocked out power for the entire town. Rows and rows of vintage cars left idling confusedly in the street. Idling is a good term…

Infinity Inc. #2: The first issue of this Peter Milligan-written 52 spin-off series was met with reviews that could charitably be called mixed. I liked it, myself. I really dug the concept of post-prominence superheroes, all of them ‘canceled’ by the sinister company supporting them, seeking out ways of coping through varied species of psychological help, all of it futile or backfiring. A natural continuation of Milligan’s fame-hungry superhero studies of Paradax and X-Statix, albeit far bleaker than anything before, with the downward spiral as the focus. I was interested in where Milligan might take the premise.

Not anywhere interesting with this second issue, which folds the themes of the first into an underwhelming investigation plot. John Henry is trying to figure out what the hell happened to Natasha at the end of last issue, so he wanders around chatting people up while other characters discuss their problems amongst themselves. There’s a cute Superman guest bit, highlighting the kindly but godly nature of that enduring icon, but the comic’s conversations mostly spin plot wheels or restate the themes of issue #1. Further, the superhero suspense doesn’t always meld smoothly into the whole; Kid Empty may be a neat idea for this particular story’s quasi-villain, being a guy with so little left inside he literally leeches the being out of loved ones and acquaintances, but his bland vampire powers don’t stand out when he’s simply left to do villainous things, and that’s all he’s got here.

Max Fiumara’s art remains functional enough from a storytelling standpoint; his real strength on this title is the hesitancy and ominousness he brings to his character work, although Dom Regan’s shiny-slick colors prove distracting. It may still all come together, though, as the team finds its footing and premise figures out a way to stretch. A letdown EH for now.

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