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Review: ‘Spike’ #2

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Following the events of “Spike: A Dark Place” #1, lovesick Spike is on his way back from the dark side of the moon and headed straight to Sunnydale with his crew of oversized alien-cockroach minions, and stranded demons. Returning to the place he helped the girl he’s hung-up on destroying might not be the best cure for Buffy heartache. Or perhaps, facing his troubles in the hometown where it all began is what this mopey vampire needs to finally move on.

WRITTEN BY: Victor Gischler
ART BY: Paul Lee
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics

After Spike’s blimp is overtaken by a gang of fish-like space demons, his loyal squad of bugs begin plotting his rescue. The relationship between Master Spike and his minions is quite interesting due to how one sided it seems to be. Their worth is not measured by what they need but by how much they are needed. And Master Spike needs them. Unsurprisingly, some bugs have their doubts about Spike’s feelings. “[…] When we help Master Spike, we are helping our own.” “[…] But sometimes I wonder if Master Spike feels the same about us.” Their loyalty is just so unbelievably endearing considering how Spike treats them.

Part Two of Spike’s advenutre functions as a build-up for what’s to come in the miniseries. Even though there’s not a whole lot of plot development, this issue introduces a new (seemingly generic and unoriginal) badass female character thst could mean many things for Spike and his love life (much to the chagrin of Spuffy Shippers).

This installment doesn’t live up to the last, but it at least humanizes this souled Spike in a way that past writers have never done before. Spike is built-up and smacked down by his romantic, or toxic, relationships with women. And now that he’s on his own, trying to “live” with his new soul, maybe he can finally develop as a character defined only by himself and not others.

Victor Gischler nails the voice of Spike, whose TV-verse swagger just drips off of him with every piece of dialogue. The art, by Paul Lee on pencils and Andy Owens on inks, helps tremendously in painting that cool image of Spike on paper. Unfortunately, where Lee excels at drawing Spike to look identical to James Marsters, the bug/fish-like alien demons from space are almost a little too comical to be taken seriously. It’s not hard to understand why this mini-series is a hit-or-miss among the Buffy fandom, but the unfolding story runs so smoothly, it makes up for the ridiculousness of the plot.

3/5 Skulls

Reviewed by – ShadowJayd