Iceman #2 features Bobby Drake saving another young mutant, and this time Kitty Pryde tags along to help. Is the issue good?
Writer: Sina Grace
Artist: Alessandro Vitti
Publisher: Marvel Comics
After the last issue which jumped around a lot checking off various plot concerns, this one is much more concentrated on a single day in Bobby’s life. Specifically, the issue follows Bobby and Kitty as they strive to save a newly powered young mutant from an angry mob. It’s a similar plot point to when Bobby saved a different young mutant from a Purifier last issue, but it mostly works. It’s nice to see Bobby interacting with and fighting to take care of mutantkind. Hopefully said interactions will take on more varied forms in future issues.
It helps that the mission serves less as the thematic meat of the issue and more as a backdrop for Bobby and Kitty’s personal tension. Going in, I was a bit worried about how the whole “Oh, so my ex is gay?” conversation would go (or if it needed to happen at all), but the execution here is pretty solid. Writer Sina Grace takes care not to render Kitty too one-dimensionally. Kitty and Bobby’s relationship is an awkward one. It doesn’t seem like the two will be extremely close anytime soon, but the care they feel for each other is evident. This middle ground approach helps to make the characters feel less clichéd than either a “hateful exes” or “girl and her gay best friend” approach likely would have.
The artwork in this issue is enjoyable. Edgar Salazar (penciller), Ibraim Roberson (penciller and inker), and Ed Tadeo (inker) deliver work that is fluid in its sense of motion and helps to magnify the reader’s sense of what’s at stake. Bobby’s facial expressions are frequently strongly rendered and (alongside Grace’s well-written dialogue) help make him easy to empathize with. Colorist Rachelle Rosenberg’s palette is fun, bright, and a nice fit for the series’ tone of optimism and hope even in the face of adversity. I especially like the way the whole art team collaborates on Bobby’s iced-up form. This issue shows Bobby utilizing a bulkier, more spiky form than usual, and it’s a nice change of pace. The coloration of his ice form and his ice constructs is lovely.
Overall, this is a good issue. It’s not as emotionally impactful as the series’ debut, but it still features writing and art that are strong except for relatively small complaints. Some of Kitty’s facial expressions and dialogue seem iffy, and I wish a bit more happened plot-wise, but what does happen is still well-done enough that I enjoyed the product as is. Iceman continues to be a series that I’d recommend to just about anyone.