In Review: Edward Scissorhands #2

Beautiful, sad, hopeful, and scary. Everything you could want and more.

The covers: Four different front pieces for you to get your scissors on. Cover A is a gorgeous image by Kevin Wada. Edward is cutting the hair of a red headed woman who seems nervous as his blades surround her. Edward looks like he’s in heaven as he goes to work. In the background, on either side, are two women ecstatic with what Edward’s done: a cut on a Yorkie and an 80’s cut on a woman with violet hair. These aren’t the hilarious designs from the film, but they look fine. The coloring is excellent on this illustration. The RI cover is by interior artist Drew Rausch in classic EC Comics mode in its layout promoting BIZARRE and BEWARE! while still showcasing Edward’s vulnerability as he looks at the destructive Eli. Very, very cool illustration and it’s a treat to see Rausch’s work uncolored. The Hot Topic Variant is also by Rausch, showing Edward outside the gates of his compound. He looks as though he’s trying to get back in, but something behind him has caught his attention. Great use of coloring showing the beauty of his world and the chaos of ours. The Subscription cover is a Sketch cover, meaning it’s entirely blank, save the logo and credits at the top. This is a terrific cover I’m glad to see IDW adopting and I hope it spreads to more of their books more often. Overall grades: A A, RI A+, Hot Topic A, and Subscription B+

The story: Edward’s reactivated prototype Eli has left the mansion after viciously killing a rat. Following the drips of blood, he knows Eli is gone. Wondering if he missed something in his creator’s journal, Edward returns to the book and finds notes regarding Eli not following instructions and trying to fill the keyhole on his chest. A taped note stating Eli has been decommissioned because he’s proven to be hostile causes Edward to say, “Oh, no.” Meanwhile, down in the suburbs, three boys, Jordan, Chris, and Phil, walk home, tossing around a basketball. Phil thinks he hears something, but walks away, leaving his poodle Simon to encounter Eli alone. Kate Leth continues to create the warmth and mystery of Edward’s world with the unpredictability of Eli on the loose. This prototype’s every move with his clawed hands creates tension and what he does with the souvenirs from his meetings will leave readers wondering what’s going on. The story does move to Megan’s mother learning that her daughter went into grandma’s storage unit. This causes some emotional strife between the two, until Megan finds an important book and her search for the truth resumes, reaching an expected confrontation on Page 20. Wow! What a place to stop! Overall grade: A+

The art: Pages of this book have little to no dialogue. The storytelling falls heavily on Drew Rausch’s ability to tell Leth’s story. He does so amazingly. The first page perfectly shows Eli’s escape and wrath, including Edward’s fear. The four panels that contain the creator’s journal are sweet on the detail and made me wish Edward had flipped through a few other pages so I could see them. Eli is the perfect enigma: both horrifying and simple. His blood covered claws make him a menace, but his actions make him seem as though there’s something mentally missing. The human characters are also a joy, with their mouths being a continuing source of enjoyment as they cartoonishly show joy and fear–My favorite smile is Megan to Phil on Page 10. My favorite overall page is 19 for the build up and the payoff Rausch creates. Simply beautiful work. Overall grade: A+

The colors: Also contributing beautiful work is colorist Jeremy Colwell. The red that Eli leaves in his wake and covers his claws is a constant reminder of the threat this character brings. Edward is not a simple black and white character, but one that also has grey highlights to set of his eyes and blades. I was very impressed with the painted sky of this book. It’s obviously twilight, but rather than go entirely grey, Colwell brings a gorgeous watercolor effect to the sky which is wonderfully shown on Page 5. Bright colors appear within the characters’ homes, though Megan’s house seems washed out of any energy (Due to grandmother’s past hanging over her mother?), while Phil’s is full of bold, bright life, perhaps because they are–so far–untouched by Edward or Eli. Excellent work. Overall grade: A+

The letters: Dialogue and two animals’ sounds are provided by Travis Lanham. His linework on the dialogue for Edward is different from the other characters, making him seem frail in comparison. I’m so glad that Lanham used to talents to differentiate Edward from the others. Overall grade: A+

The final line: Beautiful, sad, hopeful, and scary. Everything you could want and more. Highest possible recommendation. Overall grade: A+

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!” and he’s reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.

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