Heroes in Birmingham #2

Posted: Tuesday, November 8, 2005
By: Steve Saville

Cover of Heroes in Birmingham #2 Creator(s): Rachel Kadushin
Publishers: Best Friends Productions (Self Published)
From: hib
Price: $2.70, $3 for print on demand(US)

Heroes In Birmingham is a humorous super hero story centred on the adventures of one Mercutio Bishop, who has had a chequered career as a corporation sponsored local hero. As the new boy to the city of Birmingham he has difficulty establishing himself and is regarded as something of a country hick by his more urbane counterparts. This latest edition adds to the cast of characters introduced in the first edition as we get to know Roof Girl better as well as villains like Wolf Woman and Gatero. The universe is being developed at a promising rate and as the characters are developed our interest in them as individuals and their inter relationships grows.

In my review of Volume One of Heroes In Birmingham I expressed my concerns about how busy the pages seemed and how the pencilled look about many of the frames could detract form the intended effect. Those concerns remain in this latest edition, in fact they are, if anything, compounded by the extensive use of toning which means that very little white space is left anywhere in the comic. The attention to detail is admirable but it can be a little overwhelming and solid.

Another gripe I have is the error rate present here. A careful proof read is desperately needed.

There I feel better now.

On a more positive note, there is much about Heroes In Birmingham that does appeal and builds on the promise of the first edition. This is a fun comic. It is fun to read and the creators obviously had a lot of fun making it.

The dynamism present in the action scenes is particularly impressive. The characters do actually seem to move as they burst out of frames and leap across the rooftops. The humour that was such a big feature of the first edition is still present here. Most of it is at the expense of the main character, Mercutio Bishop but hey he probably deserves it. He still seems to be playing a part in a play that he does not understand or have any control over, so it is hardly surprising that many of his actions fail or result in further confusion. He may be a super hero but he is still a small town kid in the big smoke and that is always going to be fraught with dangers and problems and a certain amount of pain.

Heroes In Birmingham is flawed sure but it still gives us a good storyline, a likeable [if slightly na´ve] main character, a range of interesting secondary characters and a generous serving of laughs. Bring on number three.

In a Word: Busy.

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