I had words to say about the first issue of Bloodstrike, none which were all that positive. However, sometimes new books (or revitalizing an old one in this series’ case) go through growing pains.
So let’s give Bloodstrike the benefit of the doubt and give it another shot. Is it good?
Bloodstrike #2 (Image Comics)
Let’s just get straight to the point. Was this issue better than the last one? Yes. Yes, it was on the basis it didn’t go with the pseudo-mature route like we saw with the sexualized violence or the graphic showing of a chopped off penis in the first issue. In return though we lose the story almost completely and most of the issue comprises of two fight scenes, along with a backup story called “Blackstrike” that just lets us know that a character exists. Outside of a hint of a villainous plot going on that involves some character called Professor Night (though the script spells Night as Knight at one point so Liefeld can make a Dark Knight joke), there’s no story or characterization to speak of.
So, what else is there to the writing? Not a whole lot. The pacing is okay, but the transitions and flow of the comic are rough due to the poor layouts and structure. The dialogue and narration are the same way, though everyone speaks and talks in the same manner so it all blurs together after a while. There’s no humor in the comic, things don’t feel tense since the stakes don’t appear high or the characters are not well-defined, and while there’s nothing even remotely offensive or insulting– there’s nothing here that might ultimately invoke an emotional reaction from the reader. In all honesty, this comic is just boring because there’s just not much going on in it or take away from it.
Of course, then we come to Rob Liefeld’s artwork. As with the last issue, the art isn’t particularly good, like you might expect. Bad musculature, terrible layouts that makes things harder to follow and understandable, action that looks stilted and causes the characters to bend their bodies in inhuman ways, no backgrounds, bland colors, and even poor foreshortening of the characters (see the moment where the Deadpool look-alike fights the armored bad guy to see that in action). I guess one positive is that at least the artwork can make you laugh at points for how goofy looking it can be?
Is It Good?
Bloodstrike #2 is less than impressive. It is slightly better than the last issue, since it doesn’t engage in pointless, vile moments. However, in a strange way, that lack of shock (including the lack of story and character), ends up making the issue rather hollow and boring. Unless you are a big fan of Liefeld, there’s no point at checking this series out.