In Review: Ghostbusters: Answer the Call #2

This issue has got plenty of scares and some solid laughs as each character's fears are revealed.

The covers: A fun trio to track down for this second issue in this saga. The A cover continues in the style of the previous A Issue for #1: Corin Howell with colors by Russell Badgett showcasing one of the characters on a Gothic background. The first issue featured all the Ghostbusters, this one focuses on fan favorite Jillian. Facing the reader with a containment unit over her shoulders, Jullian smiles at the reader while standing before a collection of devices she’s created for catching ghosts. The frame that this collection is in resembles the Gothic frame from last month. I like the illustration, with the character good and the gizmos cool, and the coloring on this is also good. The B cover is a neat treat, with the team outside their new headquarters. Jillian is sitting inside ECTO-1, pumping her fist as if she’s ready for action. Erin is leaning into Jillian from outside the car, probably to ask what she’s doing. Patty is leaning on the passenger’s side of the car, looking at Abby, who’s leaning on the front of the car, checking a document. Kevin has come outside with a tray of coffee for his bosses. There’s a plume of smoke coming out of the rear of ECTO-1. I like the art by Emma Viecelli and the colors by Luis Antonio Delgado give this a nice dusk feeling. The cover I need to get a hold of is the Photo Cover RI featuring Kate McKinnon as Jillian Holtzmann. Kate looks fantastic in this photo! Overall grades: A A, B A, and Photo Cover RI A+

The story: Doctor Kruger, a specter who was once a schreckgespenst, loosely translated a “boogeyman”, is back from the dead and surrounding the Empire State Building. His/Its appearance has made the morning news and the Ghostbusters are watching the broadcast. After the ghost does something disgusting, the team realizes they have to stop him. Patty reminds them that they just got their butts kicked by him and they’ve got a big hole in their headquarters. Abby throws in that she also got possessed — again. Jillian would love to use some weapons, but that means they’re going to have to get close to him — again. Erin silences everyone when she realizes there’s a massive event occurring downtown and no one has called them. Kevin answers this question quickly, as only Kevin can. Thirty-nine minutes later they’re at the building and the ‘busting attempts begin. Writer Kelly Thompson excellently captures the banter and spirit (no pun intended) of the characters from the film. She has some solid scares in this issue as she shows what frightens each woman, since Doctor Kruger uses fear to bring down his foes. Erin and Abby’s fears start as scenes from the film but change into something new to show what each is fearful of. Patty and Jillian’s fears were the best, as their backgrounds weren’t as explored as much in the film. The Ghostbusters are left in a real cliffhanger by this issue’s closing. I have no idea how they could get out of this. There’s nothing that would make sense…unless someone who resembled a Thunder God appeared to save the day. Overall grade: A

The art: Corin Howell starts the issue with a full-paged splash of giant Doctor Kruger swirling around the Empire State Building. Strands of his mustache and beard have become skull spirits with insect-like mandibles. Then Howell goes cinematic: the second page shows the same image on live television, then shows the team watching the broadcast, then, for the final two panels, pulls in tight to the women showing them seeing something bad and discussing the situation. Very nice. This discussion, which carries over to Page 3 has the characters conversation be very animated; I felt like I was watching a mini movie as they talked. The first three panels on 4 had me laugh out loud because it is illustrated just as I would expect it to be if this comic were being filmed. ECTO-1 looks beautiful at the bottom of the same page and provides the perfect transition to 5 when they arrive at their destination. I have to give a special shout out to Howell for the good job done on the building; backgrounds can be tedious to draw and some artists skimp on their details to focus on the characters, but not Howell. This exterior looks great and it has a wonderful perspective to show how massive it is. 6 has a terrific panels that focus on each character that demonstrates their personalities perfectly. Kruger’s reveal to the women is great on 7 and then the book goes into the fears of each person. The character that morphs into something else for Abby was great and would scare people just by its visage; the second to last panel on 13 is outstanding! As with what Abby fears, the individuals that terrify Patty look great, and it’s their simplicity, and numbers, that make them a scream. Jillian’s is the best reveal of the book, with a great nod to John Carpenter’s They Live. I’m liking what Howell is doing. Overall grade: A

The colors: This story may start out at 10:21 am, but the colors by Valentina Pinto make it a dark environment due to the overwhelming size and abilities of Doctor Kruger. That said, this book is not so dark that the artwork disappears — every element of the visuals is easily seen. The first page contains some excellent work with blues and grays to make the monstrous monstrosity look as though it has returned from the dead. The Ghostbusters’ costumes and skin has them standing out strongly against any setting they’re in. On Page 4 the top three panels are lighter, with a good smattering of red to make the background stand out, which reflects the mood of the story in them. When the ladies go to zap the baddie their proton pack guns are excellent in orange and yellow when they fire. The reds in Abby and Patty’s fear driven visions are strong, while violet dominates Jillian’s. As with Howell’s art, Pinto is doing a terrific job. Overall grade: A

The letters: Neil Uyetake is responsible for creating this issue’s scene settings, transmissions, and dialogue (the same font), television text, yells, a whisper, ghostly speech, sounds, signage, and robotic dialogue. Everything works well, though I wish that Uyetake had used a different font for the scene settings and the dialogue, as it is two different forms of communication. The one whisper is tiny enough to make the minuscule mumbling funny, but still readable. Plus the ghostly dialogue of the all the spooks makes them look visually unearthly. Overall grade: A-  

The final line: This issue has got plenty of scares and some solid laughs as each character’s fears are revealed. The dialogue between characters deserves praise for sounding absolutely authentic, while the visuals capture the visual humor and frights of the film. This is a Ghostbusters adventure for all ages. Recommended. Overall grade: A

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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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