"The mystery deepens as Marilyn and Eddie explore Europa and find much more than they expected. And just why is Cagney suddenly so eager to leave?"
As I said last month, The High Ways #1 did enough to draw me into wanting to read the next issue. The story, while not all that original, had a certain charm about it and it reminded me of the sort of comic I’d have read when I was a kid. But by the last panel of The High Ways #2, I’m not sure I have that same enthusiasm I once had.
Whereas the first issue was very slow paced and methodical to build character, story and setting, The High Ways #2 doesn’t take any time to breathe. We jump straight into the action from first issue’s cliffhanger and from there we dart around from place to place getting more twists and more turns. Rather than keep the slow-burn pacing, John Byrne has spelled out 3 issues worth of plot twists in 20-odd pages. It seems such a shame because the series did have some promise but plot points that could have served as audience teasing surprises don’t have any weight to them because it’s on to the next scene to give us more.
On top of that, the character development is incredibly lacking from the first issue. The drive and energy Eddie had in The High Ways #1 now feels like a distant memory which is hurting his chances to connect with his audience. Even the sense of wonderment that they are in the far reaches of space and on this distant homeland seems inconsequential and just another plot device. You'd be forgiven for thinking this issue was written by a completely different writer.
I do still hold faith in Bryne’s vision and I hope it all works out for the series as it does have a good premise (albeit an unoriginal one). I like the idea of a thriller in space with some cool twists and character development but it’s not taking its time to enjoy it. Let us savour what we’re given – we’ll enjoy it more that way.
Luke Owen is one of the co-editors of Flickering Myth and the host of the Flickering Myth Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @CGLuke_o.