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If you are going to reboot a classic tale, then 1) there better be a good reason to do it, and 2) there better be an homage to the original.  In the case of Dynamite Entertainment’s Buck Rogers series, both options are covered in spades to deliver up a mind warping story.

Buck02_cov_Cass.jpgIn between blackouts and flashbacks, readers are getting a pretty clear idea of why a giant bear captured Captain Deering and Buck Rogers last issue. Seems the colonists at the Fort Heinlein suffered from a psychotic plague that destroyed the colony, and during the final stage, one of the scientists shot a rocket filled with human and animal DNA, and the plague into deep space.  The military, not wanting the goods to fall into some alien hands, commandeer Buck and his space ship to fly an intercept mission.  It’s at this point that the gravity drive jumps Buck into the 25th century, and also explains the animals on the prowl.

The action doesn’t stop as Wilma and Buck escape their captors, and make their way to a trash compactor where Wilma finds a couple of prospecting suits that bear a remarkable resemblance to the original Buck Rogers space suit from long, long, ago.  I liked that touch as Scott Beatty works it into the story naturally, and it doesn’t seem forced at all.

The overall story moves pretty quickly, and while there are some questions still to be answered, there aren’t any moments were the story stalls.  That said, there is an odd transition from current story to the flashback sequence that took me a moment to adjust to what was going on.  If jarring was what Beatty was going for, then he succeeded in disorienting the reader to be in line with Buck’s reaction to the events that have happened in the last hour or so of his life.

Art wise, Carlos Rafael delivers images that work well in the story, and I’m really happy he was able to draw the heroes without that black and white suit that seems to be the rage in the future.  I’m slightly bothered by the shading of the characters.  If this were a film shoot, I could understand the high contrast ratio, but there is no way the entire side of one’s face would be in shadow yet the ear is lit bright as day.

This issue is really straight forward – there’s more exposition, more secrets revealed, a few fisticuffs as Wilma and Buck save each other from being slaughtered by two genetically altered creatures, and a few bigger implications for the direction the story may take in the near future.  A few gripes with art aside, Buck Rogers #2 continues to make this property interesting and keeps the name circulating 81 years after being first introduced.  Buck Rogers #2 is worth the read, and earns 3.5 out of 5 Stars.

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The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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