DOMINO #2 [Review]

DOMINO #2/ Written by GAIL SIMONE/ Art by DAVID BALDEON/ Colors by JESUS ABURTOV/ Letters by VC’S CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.

An innocent child taken by bad people. A series of brutal experiments ensues. The child is left with an inhuman appearance and uncanny powers. The child becomes an adult and a mercenary, in that order, using their powers to try and build some kind of life for themselves.

Neena Thurman’s story isn’t unusual among mutant mercenaries but her powers certainly are. Neena posesses a latent and random form of telekinesis that aids her in staying alive – an uncontrollable sort of “good luck” that just causes things to happen one right after another that benefit her. Hence her code name Domino.

Unfortunately, Domino’s luck may have finally run out. Her birthday party just got crashed by a tough customer called Topaz. It seems Topaz and the elderly man under her protection have a grudge against Domino for some reason. What’s worse is that Topaz has the power to turn off other mutants’ super powers. Which means Domino is in real serious trouble as this issue opens with her falling to her death!

It spoils little to reveal that Domino defies her apparent death in the preview page above. What may surprise readers, however, is how rapidly this series will bring you to care about Neema and her friends and how masterfully it brings you into their world. What’s truly astonishing is that if, for some reason, you haven’t read the first issue, you can start with this issue and feel like you haven’t missed a thing! Then again, given that this issue is written by Gail Simone, who usually adheres to the axiom that every comic should be written as if it were someone’s first, that may be the least surprising aspect of all.

The artwork for this issue is, in a word, amazing. David Baldeon has an animated, kinetic style that well suits the action of Simone’s script. There is a definite screwball comedy element to the story, despite the emphasis on explosive action, and Baldeon’s gift for drawing expressive faces is given quite the workout. Throw in an eye-catching paint-job by Jesus Aburtov and some well-placed word-balloons from VC’s Clayton Cowles and you have one fantastic looking book!

I’ve never cared much for X-Men, X-Force or any of the other hundreds of X-titles. Yet after two issues, I am hooked on Domino. I can’t wait to see what Issue Three has in store!

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