How Many Secret Societies Are Too Many? – Advanced Review Of Romulus #2

I got my hands on the second issue of Romulus from Bryan Hill and Nelson Blake II. Now to be fulling transparent, I write for Top Cow occasionally. So you may think I'm biased. But I liked the first issue of this series and have been waiting for the second.

The story picks up shortly after the last issue left off, Ashlar is explaining to Nicholas why the Order of Romulus was after him and how he won't be safe unless they get him somewhere far away like Africa or Asia. He has another idea, he wants to help her. He has confidence in his intelligence and thinks every war needs a genius. That's an interesting response to almost getting killed by a secret society.

While this is happening she is contacted by a Youtube Pop Star who happens to front another secret society. Seems like you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a secret society now-a-days. And the order has another warrior they call Achilles who has been assigned Ashlar, to be her shadow. He plays with her and then takes something away (don't want to spoil by saying what). He doesn't kill her because Romulus has plans for her.

Ashlar is a young girl with training in fighting and surviving but knows little to nothing about living. Everyone around her wants something from her and no one seems to care if she gets hurt in the process. She's the pawn that everyone wants to manipulate, but I get the feeling she is far more than a pawn and the societies are trying to get their hands on her before she really gets going.

Hill's writing is quick paced and natural. The dialogue flows well by not flowing well. There's a crossfire cadence to it, people talking over each other and interrupting that you'd see in real life. Plus he's quickly built up a lot of mystery surrounding this girl. Blake's art work's well in both the action scenes and the talking head moments. The art doesn't get boring when two people are just sitting and talking and it doesn't go over the top when the fighting starts. It's a real nice balance that keeps you in the story.

My only complaint is at this point, Ashlar is letting everything happen to her, she needs to start making things happen to be the true lead of a comic series. Hopefully we'll start seeing that in issue three.

Here are some preview pages from the book, due out November 30th.

rom02_covasocialrom02_preview01 rom02_preview02 rom02_preview03 rom02_preview04 rom02_preview05 rom02_preview06


About Dan Wickline

Has quietly been working at Bleeding Cool for over three years. He has written comics for Image, Top Cow, Shadowline, Avatar, IDW, Dynamite, Moonstone, Humanoids and Zenescope. He is the author of the Lucius Fogg series of novels and a published photographer.