(Titan Comics, 2013)
Review by Brad Gischia
Created, Written, & Illustrated by: Stuart Jennett
Logo Design: Donna Jennett
Edited & Lettered by: Andrew James
Spoilers abound. If you want to read Chronos Commandos #2 with a pristine palate, I suggest skipping this till later.
This week Titan Comics continues its run of great releases with the second issue of Chronos Commandos by Stuart Jennett.
Issue 1 ended with Sarge arriving at the Allied lab just as all hell was breaking loose, the Nazis have stolen the chronosphere. Issue 2 picks up right where 1 left off, and we get a little more information on the tech. The chronosphere is a device integral to the time travel program, a beacon that the time machines, called “dive pods” follow on their path through time. The Nazis have taken it and a pod and escaped through time.
Then comes a brief lull in the machine-gunning as a team is prepped, and we learn a little more about Sarge, the only survivor of the mission in Issue #1. He takes out the Nazis that have been impersonating the tech crew, and immediately recruits men for a mission to track them down. Sarge is a realist and believer in destiny. Nothing can change the future or the past, no matter how they may meddle. Einstein also becomes a major player in this book, as he is the engineer in charge of the program. (Also looks quite the badass when brandishing a Thompson.) Though he does not come right out and say it, it seems that his philosophy may be at odds with Sarge’s, or at least he doesn’t quite believe that everything is as cut and dried. Jennett frames the story well here, using down time that could either be skipped over with a quick dialogue box saying “later…” and filling it with a little history that helps to fill out the characters. The first issue was great because it roped you into the action; this is a good second because it makes the characters more three-dimensional.
There are a few pages interspersed here that show the Nazi crew with the chronosphere, running through a familiar looking cretaceous swamp, and the arrival of their pickup team, the Nazi bell-shaped time pod vaporizing a stegosaurus in eight awesome panels.
The Chronos Commandos jump (through time) into action, by following the fading trail of the other pod through time, and land in the swamp. They track the Nazis and in a chilling moment, fall into a trap.
The art is top notch again in Issue #2, and we see a little expansion on Mr. Jennett’s talent with the long shots of the Allied hangar and the detail of the inside of the dive pod. I love the way the tech is drawn. It’s realistic for the era. There’s a shot of the inside of the pod, right before the crew goes back in time, and it looks like something that was drawn from close observation. Jennett spares no detail, which makes the book more realistic. It feels like this is what a WWII-era time machine built by the government would look like.
There are extras at the end that foreshadow the coming books which I’ll not spoil here, though a blueprint of a dive pod is included and some “official” correspondence complete with intelligence service blacked out areas.
This was a good second book. Stuart Jennett has laid the story out well and continues to keep it moving with fast-paced action, while using the lull periods to his best advantage. I can only imagine that Issue #3 will be another time-traveling, machine-gunning testament to badassery and good story telling.
Follow Brad Gischia on Twitter: @comicwasteland