Following the first issue of a new, four-issue, mini-series by Kurtis J. Wiebe and Riley Rossmo, Debris #2 continues with Maya settling into her new role as Protector of Maiden. After Jormungand destroys the village’s only water maker, Maya leaves Maiden behind to carry out Calista’s final request to find Athabasca—a legendary water source, the last one in this post-apocalyptic, dystopian wasteland, that could ultimately save her people. What she encounters along the way is a more ferocious “breed” of umbra, and a past villager of Maiden with a vague history with her fallen mentor.
WRITTEN BY: Kurtis J. Wiebe
ART BY: Riley Rossmo
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
Armed with makeshift garbage gauntlets and a massive rifle, topped off with a dangerously sharp bayonet, issue #2 opens up with Maya fighting off three aggressive and beautiful Umbrals. Rossmo’s fantastic rendering of these mechanical creatures, and colourist Owen Gieni’s bright take on Wiebe’s barren world, give the book a less daunting feel than most stories chronicling the end of life on earth. Even Maya seems to be confident and naïve in her quest, not letting the dire situation of her planet weigh on her drive to save it. Throwing out common heroine clichés and insults in battle like, “COME AT ME!” and “RUSTNUT!” shows her faith in her abilities even though she’s being faced with a kind of umbra she’s never encountered before.
After defeating them with ease, a sandstorm forces her to seek shelter in an abandoned amusement park where she encounters Kessel, the only human to live outside of the line. He’s a past resident of Maiden whom she was lead to believe was banished for causing civil unrest but ran away instead of facing the consequences. It turns out that the implied tumultuous relationship between Maya and the Elders Council in ‘Debris’ #1 didn’t start or end with her. Wiebe builds Maya’s character further by introducing Kessel, who, it seems, we will be seeing a lot more. We are offered a nice glimpse into the past of the Council, clearing up some mysteries from issue #1. By the end of this chapter, Maya seems to be even more confident as she continues her dangerous journey to the fabled water source in Athabasca.
Wiebe doesn’t only cement Maya’s role as a fearless, ass-kicking warrior in this issue, but he delves deeper into her personality. It’s really a refreshing take on a female comic book heroine. She’s intelligent, strong, driven, and loyal to her mentor, people, and the village she’s sworn to protect. Yet she’s also flawed. She’s naïve and has this resolute blind faith in Calista’s belief that the legend of Athabasca actually exists. To the point where she was planning on walking west until it magically appeared in front of her, not taking any time to think logically about the dangers she’d face. On the other hand, her blind faith and eagerness to save her people makes you root for her..
It’s disappointing to think that there are only 2 issues left, and I’m really hoping the public respond to it well in the off chance Wiebe and Rossmo decide to turn it into an ongoing series (“Green Wake” round two?). I want more of Maya kicking colossal ass in my life.
Reviewed by: ShadowJayd