REVIEW: ‘Home Sick Pilots,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Home Sick Pilots #2

Home Sick Pilots #2 is written by Dan Watters, illustrated and colored by Caspar Wijngaard, lettered by Aditya Bidikar, designed by Tom Mueller, and published by Image Comics. After the events of the first issue, Ami finds herself empowered by the Old James House forces and seeks out the wayward spirits that have departed the house. Meanwhile, Rip and Buzz struggle to figure out what happened to their friend as flashbacks chronicle the first meeting of the Home Sick Pilots.

The creative team continues their unique blend of anime and horror tropes, particularly in Wijngaard’s designs. A metallic monster bears a striking resemblance to one of the Angels from Neon Genesis Evangelion, while a horseshoe-headed monster wouldn’t feel out of place in Clive Barker’s stories. Wijngaard also utilizes heavy use of shadow and light on his pages to set the mood and continues to use the same pink, blue, and purple color scheme throughout the book. This leads to several stunning city scenes and Ami standing out due to her newly snow-white hair and eyes.

Muller provides a striking design for the cover, with a spotlight focused on one of the issues’ monsters and the back cover referring to the grisly fate the Nuclear Bastards suffered in Home Sick Pilots #1. Bidikar continues to utilize unique lettering choices, especially where the ghosts are concerned. The speech bubbles feature white text against a black background and are distorted to add more horror to the book’s overall theme.

Watters also continues to flesh out the cast of characters, particularly the Pilots. Buzz and Rip struggle to find a way to rescue Ami, as they believe the Old James House has claimed Ami as a victim (and they’re only half right). Elsewhere, Ami manages to handle her new power and resolves to guide the ghosts to their eternal rest. Her own trauma over losing her mother informs this decision, as well as an encounter she has with one of the ghosts. Watters understands how trauma can have a lasting effect and handles it with care in his script, actually showing Ami having an emotional reaction after her battle with the ghost. She’s understandably upset and freaked out as any sane person would be by the appearance of ghosts.

The issue also introduces a rather disturbing ghost in the form of a horseshoe, which a young woman found at the Old James House. At first, it granted her immense luck, but soon the audience learns the downside of luck. More than that, it turns out the ghost possessing the horseshoe has a deadly case of separation anxiety, which leads to a battle between it and Ami. I fully expect the other ghosts that show up in the series to have a similar gimmick, as it will keep the horror and action elements fresh.

Home Sick Pilots #2 continues to blend horror and anime elements while presenting a realistic look at the ongoing effects of trauma. With the central conceit of the series established, the creative team can now continue to weave their haunted house rock opera, which continues Image Comics’ trend of compelling creator-owned comics.

Home Sick Pilots #2 is available wherever comics are sold.


Home Sick Pilots #2
5

TL;DR

Home Sick Pilots #2 continues to blend horror and anime elements while presenting a realistic look at the ongoing effects of trauma. With the central conceit of the series established, the creative team can now continue to weave their haunted house rock opera, which continues Image Comics’ trend of compelling creator-owned comics.