Review – Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2
Writer: Al Ewing
Colourist: Frederico Blee
Release Date: 2021
Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2
We continue Al Ewing’s revamped Guardians series and it simply gets better and better.
If you haven’t read the first volume, go read it. Or have a look at my previous review here before continuing, a few spoilers appear below!
The first book in Guardians of the Galaxy volume 2 is book 6 “same time next week.” This one, for me, dragged along, I would have preferred something more punchy. However, I get it, it needed to bed the reader in and consolidate the action from the last volume.
We find Richard Ryder talking to his therapist about the revelations from the last volume.
It is a simple way to remind the reader what happened and to add any additional information we might have missed. For example, I had totally forgotten Marvel Boy and Hercules being a thing!
“Let’s talk Politics” This is a diplomatic who dunit murder mystery! Talks between are not particularly constructive but they all kind of agree to disagree.
An 80’s stylised Adam Ant esq Marvel boy ends up basically saying, cool, peace it is, happy days. Then heads off to the bog where he finds a dead diplomat and to the others it looks like he is the murderer.
More especially when another diplomat enters, whose weapon shoots to kill Marvel Boy but somehow ends up shooting it’s own user! The other diplomats, alerted by the gun fire, find Marvel boy holding the gun… I wonder who will solve this mystery?!?
“Business as Usual” Of course the mystery is solved, by none other than Rocket Racoon! With his investigative hat and coats reminiscent of 80’s detective series. With some clever thinking and great witty retorts he settles the matter and figures out the meeting was sabotaged!
They discover the culprit or might that be culprits? Plus the reasoning behind it and manage to evade being blown up again! However….Knull is destroying worlds with his dragons and needs to be stopped.
“I will make you Star Lord” At last some Peter Quill action, I knew he couldn’t be dead! We catch up to him in the aftermath of him choosing to blow himself up to save his friends in the previous volume. We find out what really happened and how he survived thanks to his boy hood weapon.
He has to renew himself into whatever he would like to become as Star Lord, his old life washed away and a new one created in a land beyond, called Morinus.
Quill spends hundreds of years there building himself up through various “houses” schooling him into being his true Star Lord self when eventually he accidentally released the gods out of his weapon and they threaten to destroy that universe. He decided they will probably follow him so, it is time to travel through the the sacred pool, back to his original reality. To protect Morinus and the friends that saved him.
Review – Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2 continues below.
“I think I had this Album” Knull and his dragons are, in their mind cleansing the earth and making it a home for evil. The next target is SPARTAX. Of course the guardians can’t defeat him and his dragons alone, luckily for them Star Lord falls out of the sky just in time to blast a dragon in the face!
“Here we make our stand” the Olympian gods are making a come back again! However, first Quill or Starlord manages to let the team know what’s about to go down whist Al Ewing let’s the characters deal with their emotions from the recent story arc.
Ewing even makes time for references to the annihilation event written 15 years ago! Long term fans are going to appreciate this reference. It builds up for the final show down in book 12. As well as for later series leaving Knull for the next writer.
“The Time of Mercy Is Past” The rag tag, odd ball group of mercenaries are reunited but will it last? Of course it will, or they wouldn’t have any more comics to write and sell!
The story picks up quickly from where it left off, allowing the characters to realise they are worth more together than as separate individuals.
Despite punches to the face by an angry Gamora. Zeus is put down by the team learning to work together.
Groot is sadly destroyed but quickly bought back to life using his head and the power of the infinity stones. Now Groot can only utter those 3 little words and now we know why! GotG have def upped their game, I think Ewing’s writing has defiantly upped them to super hero status.
Art and Writing
This is Cabals last Guardians of the Galaxy series sadly. So yes, truly an end of an era, but what a great 12 books he has produced the art for along side Ewing who has really added some nice moments and character developments.
These were well needed for a comic series that had stagnated, where the films have taken over. A lot of love is given to outsider characters, such as Nova.
The writing is complimented beautifully by Juann Cabal’s artwork throughout the series. With the amazing colourist Frederico Blee, who gives the vivid blues, greens and pink colour clashes to the art which is truly a feast for the eyes and works an absolute treat with the galactic theme.
Guest artist in Marcio Takara adds another new dimension, taking nothing away from Cabal. He adds a twist on Cabal’s designs, very subtlety but managing to stamp the books he worked on clearly as his own. As well as some of the other cover artists involved.
Overall I think Ewing and co deserve the hype they have garnered. They have pulled back this series, given it a twist and the kick up the arse it needed. Leaving it open ended for the next issue to continue in a similar vein perhaps with Knull still at large.
Yes, it’s come full circle, back to the beginning where Ewing started with Olympian gods. However, I think the Guardians of the Galaxy needed that final coming together and movement forward from ragtag gaggle of misfits to our enduring hero’s.
Finally, the clever character development and the emotions being dealt with compassionately was just the icing on the cake for me. The best stories are not all action and violence or good versus bad. It’s the ones that are written incredibly to reflect the colourful nature within us all.
I have thoroughly enjoyed Al Ewing’s series, best of luck to Cabals successor Juan Frigeri
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