It’s Month 2 of DC Comics’ The New 52! It’s do-or-die this month for the books I bashed last month, and time to see if the titles I loved last month are as good as I thought! I’ll be reviewing all 52 #2 issues released this month, and you can find all of the reviews on the Comic Book Reviews index page. This week we get 13 #2 issues, including Static Shock #2! I graded Static Shock #1 as a ‘D’, based on my feeling that the book had potential it didn’t reach in the first issue. Some New 52 books like O.M.A.C. have improved my perception of them with issue #2. Static Shock is not one of those books.
This review will contain spoilers.
I’ll forgo breaking this review into sections because I really don’t have a lot of good things to say about Static Shock #2. This issue read to me like an incoherent, jumbled mess. Due to the lack of any kind of exposition, backstory, or character development in the first issue, I was lost as to who was who and what was going on in this issue.
Last issue’s shocking cliffhanger was Static’s arm being blown off by an evil villain. In this issue, we find out it’s not as bad as it seems, as Static gives off some electricity and his arm goes back to normal. I have no idea what happened here, and apparently neither does Static. I’m glad we’re on the same level.
The villains in this book seem to be a team of evil Power Ranger teenagers on Tron Lightcycles. I’m not really certain what all they can do, because they just sorta sit there and report back to their superiors about how they’ve “failed” to kill Static, but I never saw any of them try to do anything to kill him or to prevent him escaping. They don’t get any kind of background, individual characterization, notable actions, or anything whatsoever to set them apart from cardboard cutouts stuck into the script to forward the plot.
The leader of the villains, Virule, looks like an imposing techno-creature, but is apparently completely helpless without his gun. Static shorts out Virule’s gun, and then Virule immediately gives up on fighting Static and flies away. Not that Virule had any credibility to begin with, but any speck he had was totally gone as soon as he gave up and ran away.
One thing I really liked about Static Shock #1 was the couple pages we got of Static’s home life. Well, my appreciation for that came to an end this issue. While at home, Static hangs out with his parents and sister Sharon. Only for his sister Sharon to enter the scene. WHA-HUH?! Apparently, Sharon has a doppelganger that lives with the family, and they both think that they’re the real Sharon.
…WHAT?! I feel like I walked into a long-running series and am expected to know everything that’s transpired before, except there is nothing that’s transpired before.
“Where Can I Buy It?!”
I mean, if you read this review and you still want to buy this comic, I guess I can’t stop you. The obvious place to buy new comic books is your local comic book store, but if you don’t have one or can’t get to it, I highly recommend giving Things from Another World (TFAW.com) a try! They stock a crazy huge number of comic books, and the prices on new releases and graphic novels are always 10-30% below cover price. I’ve been buying from TFAW for close to a decade now and never had a bad experience, so I have total confidence in their value and quality. Click here if you wanna take a look at buying comics from Things from Another World.
Overall: I love teen superhero books. I love underdog books with C-List characters. I love the idea of characters from other universe being folded into the DC Universe. But I do not love Static Shock. I really, truly wanted to get behind this book. But it just isn’t good. The villains are some of the worst thought-out and designed that I’ve seen in comic books in many years, the action is confusing, and I still have no clue where Static came from or how his powers work or why I should care. I had a shred of hope for this series when I reviewed Static Shock #1, but this issue is even worse and more confusing than its predecessor. I give up.