We’re going to need a bigger box. (Errand Boys #2 Comic Review)

Written by D.J. Kirkbride
Drawn and Colored by Nikos Koutsis
Flatted by Mike Toris
Lettered and Designed by Frank Cvetkovic
Edited by Adam P. Knave & El Anderson
Cover by Nikos Koutsis & Mike Toris
Creative Consultant Erik Larsen
Vazgog Backup Story by D.J. Kirkbride, Giorgos Konstantopoulos, Alkis Kampouris, & Frank Cvetkovic

In issue two of Image Comics’ Errand Boys, we continue our journey with the Lopaz half-brothers, Jace and Tawnk, who are hot on the trail of a Vazgog—a giant bird-monster that inhabits the desert planet of Mauslio. But the Vazgogs aren’t the only ones about to test our heroes’ mettle.

In This Issue: On the trip to Mauslio, after a sudden and acute bout of space-sickness for Tawnk, the Lopaz brothers take some time to get to know each other a bit better. Tawnk, who studied Vazgogs at school, pulls out some old classwork and discovers the fact that Vazgogs are critically endangered, and that his and Jace’s errand to snatch a baby Vazgog could topple the entire Mauslio ecosystem. Jace very succinctly informs his younger half-brother that if he wants to keep learning things like that he’s going to have to be all right with a little bit of habitat destruction. After a routine traffic stop due to some unpaid traffic tickets on Jace’s part turns into a brief police chase and a narrow escape from a space junkyard, the trip to Mauslio gets a bit…boring. Tawnk remarks that Jace looks like their father, and Jace counters by citing Tawnk’s resemblance to his mother (Jace’s step-mother). After a brief moment of acknowledging that they both got their father’s eyes—one brown, one blue—Jace decides to close his for a while and nap away the time until they get where they’re going on autopilot.

Upon landing, Jace and Tawnk set off in search of a baby Vazgog (with a net, a water-damaged cardboard box, and some tape,) and the errand is nearly over and done with simply.

Nearly.

After an altercation with the Mama Vazgog and a failed attempt to return to the ‘Bego due to Jace’s complete lack of a sense of direction, Jace, Tawnk, and the Mama Vazgog get captured by the local band of Dirt Pirates, and we leave them on their way to being Dirt Pirate Chow.

My Two Cents: The whimsy continues in this second installment of the Errand Boys saga. It’s a colorful romp through a doubly-colorful universe, and the action doesn’t stop. There are fewer large panels in this issue than the first, which highlights the sudden intrusion the Lopaz brothers have made into each other’s lives. We get a little more depth to Jace and Tawnk’s relationship as well as some individual backstory, and we start to see them work together as a team.

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Elizabeth Fazzio
South Bay native turned East Bay resident. Holder of two less-than-useful arts degrees. Human Resources professional by day, creative recluse the rest of the time. Favorite words: Weasel, toast. Mental health advocate--https://makeitok.org
Elizabeth Fazzio
Summary
I know that last month I cited the dialogue in this series as problematic—sadly it has stayed that way. The attempt at a 'hip and spacey' vernacular has just rendered the writing even clunkier than the first issue—it doesn't read smoothly at all. Also, there is a completely unnecessary flash-back-flash-forward towards the end of the book that simply doesn't work. There is a sudden jump from the action to what would be the end of the issue and then back to the action, and it serves no purpose whatsoever. On the plus side, however, the space junkyard is rife with Easter Eggs—little nods to other sci-fi franchises floating in the debris. There is another quick backstory at the end of this book like there was in the first one, and this time it is a wordless history of the Vazgogs on Mauslio. It's a touching little vignette about the cause of their dwindling numbers, and I hope to see it woven into the main story line when we pick back up next month.
Good
  • Good use of color
  • Constant action
  • Good use of angles
Bad
  • Overworked attempt at vernacular
  • Clunky, stilted dialogue and narration
7.5
Good
Art - 9
Story - 8
Writing - 6
Predictability - 7
Written by
South Bay native turned East Bay resident. Holder of two less-than-useful arts degrees. Human Resources professional by day, creative recluse the rest of the time. Favorite words: Weasel, toast. Mental health advocate--https://makeitok.org

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