REVIEW: ‘Beta Ray Bill,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Beta Ray Bill #2 - But Why Tho?

Beta Ray Bill #2 is published by Marvel Comics, with writing and art by Daniel Warren Johnson, colors by Mike Spicer, and letters by Joe Sabino. Bill has left Asgard in order to find Odin in the hopes he can forge him a great weapon. Bill desperately wants to wield the magic to transform him back into his Korbinite self.

Previously, Bill, now the Master of War for Asgard, must swiftly act by defending his people from a symbiote infected Fin Fang Foom. Bill however got his rear end served to him on a silver platter. With the late arrival of King Thor, they finally beat the beast. Bill feels the sting of inadequacy by being in the shadow of his brother in arms. The Korbinite has one hope, a new weapon endowed with the magic of the All-Father, to fill the hole of the loss of Stormbreaker.

As we find our sullen protagonist in issue #2, he has collected an unlikely, but highly animated crew, to help him on his quest. Where Odin leads him, however, will be a place that has haunted Beta Ray Bill since his creation and a weapon that has a history of destruction.

Firstly, a big old clapping of the hands for Johnson as he tackled both the writing and the art for this series. Where the initial story landed with an almighty impact across the bow, issue #2 takes the time to build up the exposition of the problem, and the solution. Johnson takes the time to develop Bill as a complex character that has oftentimes served at the whim of Asgard, but is not one of their natural born subjects. Now however battles with those insecurities and the feeling of being used, while not being valued. He deals with his inadequacies as a humanoid in favor of his form as a soldier and a living weapon.

Johnson then brilliantly transitions these forlorn feelings into somber expressions on the face of Beta Ray Bill. Honestly, the art is bloody lovely, and kudos to Johnson for his humorous embedding of Marvel writing Easter eggs. This can be found on the double-page spread where there is a cross-section of the Skuttlebutt ship. It’s like a living architectural schematic of the ship in real-time and it’s wonderfully fantastic.

Johnson seems to agonize with detailing out every inch of the panel on the page, but it really serves to elevate the issues. Also, I’d be remiss not to mention the absolute wholesome visual of Bill playing ping-pong, in the opening panels. A lovely ice breaker.

Spicer’s colors really lend themself to the artwork by Johnson. They find a way to utilize colors that accentuate the sequences in the best light. All in all, what Spicer’s colors do best is blend so well with the art that it keeps the pace of the story and keeps the reader engaged with the plot.

Sabino’s lettering is top dollar, as he really invests the time into making Johnson’s onomatopoeia pop. When reading through, these enigmatic designs jump out at you and again allow you to sink into the story as if you were there with Beta Ray Bill himself.

This creative team’s approach to this series screams palpable excitement, as each member pours themselves into their craft. The results culminate in a vibrant, and exciting world with a character that is begging to be explored more. I am loving what I’ve seen so far and I can’t wait to see where the journey leads.

Beta Ray Bill #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.

Beta Ray Bill Issue #2
4.5

TL;DR

This creative team’s approach to this series screams palatable excitement, as each member pours themselves into their craft. The results culminates in a vibrant, and exciting world with a character that is begging to be explored more. I am loving what I’ve seen so far and I can’t wait to see where the journey leads.