Mercy #2 is published by Image Comics. It comes from the creative team of writer/artist/colorist Mirka Andolfo, color assistant Gianluca Papi, and letterer Fabio Amelia. This issue begins an indeterminate amount of time after the events of the first issue. A young woman named Rachel is fleeing a doctor and nurse through snow-covered streets. When the two finally catch up to her, she has found a strange flower that appears to have infected her. Immediately, the scene shifts to the home of Lady Hellaine. Mr. Goodwill, a mysterious man posing as her servant, brings her breakfast. The two speak, revealing that the Lady will be hosting a party and, more importantly, that she is not human.
As invitations to the party go out, all of the upper-class citizens of Woodsburgh make their preparations to attend. The Lady Swanson seems unconvinced, but her family talks her into going. As the party kicks off and the elite find themselves in attendance, the first meeting between Hellaine and Swanson finally occurs. But as the events of the night go on, the horrors of Lady Hellaine’s past appear and new problems arise for the citizens of Woodburgh.
In Mercy #2, the story picks up from where the first left off. Andolfo continues to tease the reader with plot threads and connections without outright telling us anything. This remains compelling and serves to keep the story both interesting and mysterious. There are deep connections between the main characters of this story, and seeing them come to light as the characters discover them makes for a gripping story. This is particularly true about Lady Hellaine. The sinister, yet reserved, nature of her character is unexpected and I can’t wait to learn more about her relationship with Mr. Goodwill. The same can be said about Lady Swanson and her mysterious connection to Hellaine. But with four issues left in the series, there is still plenty of time for answers.
Meanwhile, Andolfo’s artwork continues to shine. The characters are wonderfully expressive. You can practically feel their emotions emanating from the panels. The beauty of each page contrasts expertly with the brutality and gruesomeness of the body horror. This is doubly thanks to Andolfo and Papi’s coloring work. There is something about the palette they use that almost makes the images tangible. The snowy nighttime pages practically feel cold. It is a true sign of expertise when the colors are this expressive. At the same time, Amelia’s letters, particularly his SFX, enhance every panel they’re on. The way they are sometimes very visible and other times transparent to let the artwork show through is masterful.
Despite a slow beginning for Mercy #2, I feel like this issue improved on the first in almost every way. The mysteries were still present, but the threads were much clearer. The characters felt more fleshed out and less one-dimensional. The art, colors, and lettering were the real stars though. This issue is worth your time just for the art alone. If you’re a fan of horror, particularly of the Lovecraftian variety, then this series needs to be in your pull list.
Mercy #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.
Despite a slow beginning… this issue improved on the first in almost every way. The mysteries were still present, but the threads were much clearer. The characters felt more fleshed out and less one-dimensional.