Review: ‘R.I.P.D.: City of the Damned’ #2

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With only two issues left in Dark Horse Comics’ R.I.P.D.: City of the Damned, Jeremy Barlow continues to approach the narrative with an accelerated pace that’s fueled by Tony Parker’s knack for visual storytelling. Feeding off of each other’s creative vision, this duo effectively dishes out a well-balanced issue that’s ripe with mystery, humor, and eccentric elements of horror.

WRITTEN BY: Jeremy Barlow
ART BY: Tony Parker
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
PRICE: $3.50
RELEASE: December 19th, 2012

The second installment pulls no punches as we’re thrust into the mayhem that follows Roy Pulsipher and Crispin Mather on their journey into Black Pool. Lucifuge, a lord of Hell whose raison d’être is to torture souls at Satan’s command, has Roy at his mercy. Using the Sorrow of Christ—a vial which holds the actual tears that Jesus shed while being crucified, Crispin defeats the demon, but at an unfortunate cost.

Issue #2 continues with Roy and Crispin embarking on their R.I.P.D. assignment, given to them by Genghis Freakin’ Khan, of finding out what became of the missing souls that never made it out of Black Pool. While Roy hopes to find answers regarding the circumstances surrounding his murder, what they find instead is a creed of terror and insanity. There’s something sinister lying beneath the town, and everyone seems to be harboring a secret; the town’s mine being at the centre of it all.

Parker’s artwork is, arguably, the best he’s done in his career. There’s a semblance of boldness and intensity reminiscent of original series artist, Lucas Maragon’s work, which Parker pours into each panel. He handles human expression and environments very well. Particularly when illustrating looks of horror on the faces of our main characters, and the first depressing, but strangely beautiful mountain-side view of Black Pool.

Michelle Madsen’s colours, though somewhat plain and dismal in execution, actually fits the feel of the series and helps portray Black Pool for what it is — a dark and forlorn city that sucks up human souls.

Barlow is doing a terrific job re-establishing Peter Lenkov’s world, and giving readers a chance to go deeper into the R.I.P.D.’s history. His vision of this warped and anachronistic old west is nothing but creative, and his quick-paced narrative only adds to the excitement of the issue. I have high hopes for the issue #3.

3.5/5 Skulls

Reviewed by – ShadowJayd