By Zack Quaintance — The Weatherman #1 was a pretty impressive debut comic, one that I like even more after getting some additional context from this second issue. In the first issue, there’s a montage in which it’s established that the titular Weatherman is painfully earnest, an irreverent entertainer who is blatant about his thoughts, feelings, desires, and corny jokes. I wasn’t sure last issue if these qualities were established for laughs, or if there was a greater narrative function for them.
After reading The Weatherman #2, it’s now clear it was the latter. Not to give too much away (ahem, spoilers!), but the central conceit of this series is that our protagonist at some point had his mind wiped. This plays to one of the comic book medium’s greatest strengths: the ability of drawings to create rough approximations for readers to envision themselves in characters better than they can in movies or on TV. Working a hero’s innocence into the plot plays to that strength, engendering a powerful amount of sympathy for our lead, feckless and crude as he may sometimes be. He’s basically a man who likely committed a horrific crime but has been more or less good ever since, cleansed of that memory and persona, turned into an utter innocent.
So, that’s all really strong, and the art in #2 is as captivating as it was in the first issue. The third act also expertly rushes toward a searing cliffhanger, much like the first issue again. Between this book and another new favorite of mine, Skyward, Image Comics is putting out some really fundamentally sound books that incentivize reading monthly versus waiting for a trade. There’s something very endearing and old school about that, and I’m loving it.
Before I give this book my full-on, must-read glowing mega endorsement, however, I should note there’s a scene with some pretty gruesome animal cruelty. This is an adult comic, and violence is to be expected—hell, elsewhere it’s established that seven years ago one of our characters maybe aided a terrorist attack that killed 18 billion people—but there’s imagery in The Weatherman #2 that crosses some usual lines. I cringed. So, be warned that you might, too.
Overall: The Weatherman continues to establish itself as yet another must-read science fiction comic in a banner year for that genre. The art, pacing, and concept are confident and complex, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the best of this book is still yet to come. 8.0/10
SPECIAL NOTE: For more thoughts about The Weatherman, see our Best Debut Comics of June 2018.
Zack Quaintance is a journalist who also writes fiction and makes comics. Find him on Twitter at @zackquaintance. He lives in Sacramento, California.