The Movement, a new series written by Gail Simone with art by Freddie Williams II, premiered last month. I wasn’t fond of the first issue, but decided to give the second installment of this Occupy-movement-esque comic a chance. At the very least, I like that DC publishes some comics that are in their main continuity, but are not traditional superhero fare. Nevertheless, given recent track records of such comics, The Movement needs a sturdy fan base if it wants to survive beyond a year. Did this issue manage to alter my opinion or did was this comic a letdown?
The Movement #2 showcases the team’s headquarters, a former sweatshop whose history mirrors the true events of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory and the ensuing fire roughly a century ago in New York City. Two offending officers are now in custody, and we start to see how the different members of The Movement view one another. Personalities come to a head as Katharsis decides on a more direct course of action against the Coral City Police Department, while the other members attempt to track down a mysterious figure that may be able to aid their mission of protecting the people.
The Movement #2 definitely explains the series’s mission statement better than either the first issue or the solicits leading up to its release. While initially this series seemed to be about a group of disenfranchised super-powered teens taking on a corrupt city government, this issue seems to indicate that things aren’t so black and white. The first issue hinted at this theme a bit, but things become more evident here and I like that Gail Simone is showing that The Movement, while it may have noble goals, does use some questionable methods. There were also a few funny moments, courtesy of Mouse and Burden. The fight scenes in the second half of the comic show some of Freddie Williams II’s best work.
I felt that the first issue of The Movement lacked direction, and regrettably things haven’t improved much with this installment. While I feel the theme of the series is more evident, the actual arc is harder to discern. Is The Movement’s ultimate goal to stop the police force? To defeat a corrupt businessman? To help the homeless? To rule the city? Obviously, I can’t expect the series to give away all its secrets two issues in, but I still can’t latch on to any definitive direction or motivation for these characters. Furthermore, I’m still not a huge fan of Williams’s artwork, which, while better in the second half of the comic, feels flat during the first half. Chris Sotomayor’s coloring work is also far from impressive and, perhaps most regrettably, Amanda Conner’s cover work is lackluster, a real shame since her work is usually top notch.
Overall, The Movement #2 is much better than the first issue of the series, but still isn’t anything special. It’s a decent comic, but not something I’d suggest for a comic reader on a budget. The series feels like its stumbling forward, perhaps a bit too methodically for my taste. I’m willing to give the next issue a look, but if things fail to wow me this series will sadly become forgettable.
-interesting mission statement that’s different from initial press reports
-a few good moments of humor
-good art during fight scenes during the comic’s second half
-first half of the comic has mediocre art
-the direction of the series is still vague
Brett Simon is a twenty-three year old comics enthusiast. He wonders how long it’ll be before Batman shows up on The Movement’s cover.
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