ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Second Chances,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Second Chances #1 - But Why Tho

Second Chances #1 is published by Image Comics, written by Ricky Mammone, with art by Max Bertolini. It always starts with a phone call at the Second Chances Hotline. Intending to set up the caller with a new life, if they are deemed a fit for the privilege, the hotline’s agent saves people from the worst of mistakes. But there is one iron-clad law. There are no third chances.

Some visual designs go with their settings so well that there is little hope of coming up with a new approach to some concepts. Example: mystery stories delivered in black and white. There is just something about the black and white presentation of these mystery stories that land so well. The lack of color imbues these stories filled with shadowy secrets all the more darkness to hide in. In the end, it just feels right. And it’s a rightness Second Chances #1 is more than happy to utilize.

The mystery and action in this book are center stage as the story opens with a phone call from one of Second Chances’ former clients. What this former client has gotten involved in is the focal point of the mystery occupying the story here. Whatever it is, someone is going to great lengths to bury it. The pseudo-samurai-looking assassins spare no bullets in trying to tie up the loose ends.

While this clash goes on, Second Chances #1 also brings another angle to the case that may just bring it closer to Second Chances than the staff may be ready to deal with.

Writer Mammone does a solid job constructing the mystery that this story focuses on. This is good, since said mystery is focused on to the point of ignoring several elements one might expect to receive in an opening story. Chief among these is the lead protagonist’s name, which is never mentioned on these pages. While elements such as these don’t strictly hurt the narrative, it does leave a weird feeling when one tries to consider the story.

The art of Second Chances #1 delivers the various scenes of its story through artist Bertolini’s effective use of the black and white aesthetic. Rather than go with a pure black and white style, shades of gray are utilized to allow for more shading, as well as a better sense of depth for many of the panels.

Bertolini also does a good job of capturing the action sequences in this book. These moments are built up enough to deliver the danger they are intended to, while not going overboard with the energy. Our main protagonist is clearly working within normal human limitations, and the art holds him to those restraints.

Wrapping up the book’s presentation is the lettering. The lettering does a solid job of bringing the reader the story in a clear fashion, as well as utilizing its design to give a bit of extra emphasis to some of the more emotional moments.

When all is said and done, Second Chances #1 delivers an enticing beginning to this series narrative. Now it’s just a matter of whether or not it can build upon this foundation.

Second Chances #1 is available August 18th wherever comics are sold.

Second Chances #1
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TL;DR

Second Chances #1 delivers an enticing beginning to this series narrative. Now it’s just a matter of whether or not it can build upon this foundation