With Kick-Ass #2, Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. raise the stakes as Patience Lee’s motivation for putting on a mask changes and she begins to embrace her new destiny as a superhero.
Written by: Mark Millar
Art by: John Romita Jr.
Colors and Digital Inks by: Peter Steigerwald
Letters by: John Workman
Kick-Ass Created by: Mark Millar & John Romita Jr.
Kick-Ass #2 takes the book into an interesting new direction yet still delivers on everything fans expect in this title. Mark Millar is one of the medium’s masters at writing ‘badassery’ and this issue is no exception, as it opens with Patience Lee, the new Kick-Ass (who still hasn’t been referred to by that name actually), putting the finishing touches on her raid on the criminal hide-out. We know from issue one that Patience’s motivations initially fell more on the financial; she needed money and decided to rob criminals. But with this chapter, the story takes a step toward a more traditional superhero narrative. While staking out her latest heist, Patience catches the attention of a young street kid who lives a life of abuse and terror under the rule his mother’s boyfriend. And much as Patience tries to ignore that and remind herself she is doing this only to pay her debts, her conscience begins to get the best of her. In all culminates in a pretty great sequence that sees Patience kick the shit out of the abusive boyfriend, quipping with the best of them. It even ends with an outright declaration: “I’m a superhero dude…I care about everybody”. This gives her character an extra dimension. Yes, she is still a thief, but now she is also doing some good. It will be interesting to see what happens here because it’s obvious Patience is a person with a strong moral code.
John Romita Jr. is a wonderful comic book artist and he has always delivered. But something about his collaborations with Millar unleashes something special in his art. These pages feature breathless pacing and brutal encounters. It’s gorgeous art that is very ‘meat and potatoes’ but still has a distinct style and details, especially with the heavy use of the close-up punch and kick panels that have become almost a trademark of this book. Seriously no one can draw a punch to the face like John Romita Jr.
The colors are fantastic too, with just the right amount of texture to create a bit of a tangible feel that helps separate it from the overt gloss so much digital coloring in comics has these days.
Chances are if you are a Kick-Ass or Millarword fan, this is already on your radar. But it’s fresh enough for new readers and features the kind fast-paced storytelling some comics seem to forget these days. Don’t sit on this one. Give it a try.