Trapped by the Trolls: Odyssey of the Amazons #2 (Review)
Odyssey of the Amazons #2
Story and Script: Kevin Grevioux
Designs, Pencils, and Cover: Ryan Benjamin
Inks: Don Ho, Richard Friend, & Ryan Benjamin
Colors: Tony Washington
It is possible that for fans of one Diana Prince, they might have an inkling of a clue of the lore that is being covered in Odyssey; or it might be an entirely new premise. That the Amazons have not always entirely existed solely on Paradise Island. That they once travelled the world. And that along the way, some women of Amazonian descent were left behind, scattered amongst the various nations of the world. Odyssey tells the tale of a squad of what are essentially Spec OPS Amazons, led by one Captain Hessia, and commissioned by Hippolyta to sally forth and round up all Amazons across the world to her banner. And to begin teaching and training them in Amazon fighting techniques, so that they might have the best opportunity to make it home, through much of the world’s evil. If you missed it, you can see my impressions from the series’ first issue here.
Issue #2 picks up with the Amazons coming under attack by Norse trolls. If you recall, at the end of the first issue, some of the team got a bit uppity, and wandered too far off from the base camp. Outside the immediate pitch black, they were quickly overwhelmed by a Frost Giant attack, and carried off to who know’s where. Hessia mounts up a rescue attempt. The initial steps of just getting on the road are difficult, with significant casualties. Once they finally land in Norway, they are tossed about by a storm, which complicates their amphibious landing, and, most critically, exhausts them all as they have to swim the final distance to shore. They fight the trolls in this exhausted state, get some help, rest, and mount up to get their sisters from the giants.
When I read this last month, my thoughts were that this was a really neat and new take on the Amazons. It broadens the focus on them to be more than just window dressing for a Wonder Woman story. And I loved the approach of crossing over mythologies. I look forward to seeing the Amazons encountering the likes of Thor, Loki, and Heimdall. And I am hoping that we see them encounter more mythologies, especially like the Egyptian mythos. But into this second issue, I am already wondering whether or not this schtick will hold everyone's attention enough to keep them on the series for the entire run. We entered the Norse realm at the end of last issue, and from the ending of this one, it looks like we’ll be there again next issue. If we are going to hit another culture before this thing is all over (or two), I was hoping that they would complete their Norse junkit in one issue. I’ll have to keep my eye on pacing with this series. In character development, Grevioux also has to keep an eye out on character development. Right now, the Amazons, except for Hessia, are all pretty much indistinguishable entities, other than their very ethnically specific garb. But at this stage, I'd like to see some more fleshing out of who these individual women are.
The art in this issue is about the same as last, coming it at what I would call above average on my scale. But it does not necessarily do anything remarkable that breaks it out and away in a distinguishable manner from other art being done in the medium today. So kudos for being consistent, but no extra points for pushing in the envelope, even in panel layout and design.
Odyssey of the Amazons is a solid second entry in this limited series, and is enough to keep me on board for at least the next issue. But I worry that it feels like a pianissimo when I am looking for the forte and the corresponding thunder. It is possible that this issue’s lack of punch was a deliberate pacing measure to provide some tangible differential between the first issue and the one upcoming. Maybe. The series is still on an even keel, but I can see a craggy slope that it might tumble down. Let’s hope they take the footpath to the right and continue their climb to the top.
Score: 7.0 / 10.0
A bit of a quiet note, the hopes are that this is a sandwich issue before a more in-your-face action issue next month? One can only hope. While this issue was certainly not “bad”, it felt like a drop-off from the last, and the focus needs to expand outside of just the main character. There are dozens of Amazon warriors in this book. Let us get to know them, too. With art that is solid but not revolutionary, Odyssey of the Amazons #2 slipped from something I was strongly recommending to the general comic book public, to a thing I would only recommend to Wonder Woman fans. But keep an eye out for Issue #3, as tweaking this thing might not be that much of a do.