The Rocketeer / The Spirit: Pulp Friction #2


rocketeer_spirit_bannerIt’s been a long time, but we finally have The Rocketeer / The Spirit: Pulp Friction #2. However, even after digging out the first issue, does the follow-up still stand on its own?

The official description from IDW:

The most pulp-tastic crossover of all time continues! What is the TV Terror that threatens all of Los Angeles—and how can the Rocketeer and the Spirit hope to combat such a futuristic menace? Plus—it’s the Peevey/Dolan team, together again at last!

Honestly, this issue opens up poorly. I’m already tired of Betty as a character and the need for her to hit on The Spirit.. I can’t tell if its just poor writing, an attempt to push another plot angle (likely given later scenes) or just a poor use of a characters potential.RocketeerSpirit02_cvrA Either way its not a gripping opening. However, with an action scene later on, as well as some good old exposition, the issue does regain much of its momentum.

As for the writing, Mark Waid’s efforts are improved this time around. This is partially down to a more fleshed out plot but also because this issue doesn’t deal with introductions – the cast has already been established so the writing can get into the fun stuff. Unfortunately, this at times just leads to simple arguments and plots that can be seen a mile off. Also Betty – yet again – is used in the most unoriginal and repetitive way possible.

In terms of the visual treatment, the art is a little better. Loston Wallace’s pencils keep with The Rocketeer‘s approach to art, while Hi Fi Designs colors adds vibrancy and subtle hues where needed. The more moody shading used in certain scenes adds a touch of the noir element – in keeping with The Spirit – that was previously missing from the title.

All in all it’s not bad, but it is not great either. Its an enjoyable read but, after the long wait, its hard to dive in and get motivated over such a short series again.



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