Review – Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 (IDW Publishing)

Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 (IDW Publishing) cover (detail.) by Drew Zucker
  • Writing - 8.8/10
  • Art - 8.8/10
  • Overall - 8.8/10

Canto II: The Hollow Men #2

Writer: David M. Booher
Artist: Drew Zucker
Colorist: Vittorio Astone
Letterer: AndWorld Design
Maturity Rating: Everyone
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date: September 23, 2020

Canto and his group are off to find the source of the Shrouded Man’s magic to save his people. But they find that the Shrouded Man’s reach is far and wide across the land.

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Canto II: The Hollow Men #2

Canto and his Malorex are off on another adventure in Canto II: The Hollow Men #2, but this time they are not alone. After freeing his people from the Shrouded Man’s enslavement, things were good for a season, but now the terrible truth has been revealed. Even though Canto’s people have freed themselves from the Shrouded Man, have found love, names, and friendship, the Shrouded Man’s presence is still upon them. It was discovered that the clocks that replaced their hearts have been slowed by the Shrouded Man’s magic. They will continue to slow until they die!

Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 (IDW Publishing) cover by Drew Zucker
Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 (IDW Publishing) cover by Drew Zucker

Canto sets off to save his people once again, but three friends and their Malorexes join the journey. The group sets off on their journey and Canto knows who to go to first to help find the source of the Shrouded Man’s magic: Aulaura, the warrior that helped him out in the City of Dis to defeat the Furies and confront the Shrouded Man. But when they make it to her town something horrible has happened in Canto II: The Hollow Men #2.


By now you know I am always excited when a new Canto book comes out. This second volume got off to a nice start last month and the adventure really begins in this issue. I can’t help but notice a slightly darker tone and feel to this issue than the previous. Booher has always had some dark, tragic elements in this series, but for some reason, this issue feels like the bleakest of them all to me.

Maybe it was because I was excited to see Aulaura again and expected a different reunion of the two. Not spoiling anything, but it is obviously not the happiest meeting ever. Plus what happens to her and her people brings that “dark” tone to the forefront of Canto II: The Hollow Men #2.

Booher does seem to be juggling this larger cast pretty well so far. I was a little bit concerned about it after the first issue. But Booher seems to be settling in a little bit more. I am hoping to get to know the other characters better as this second volume continues on. But it is nice to have other characters for Canto to “bounce” off of now.

But Booher also does a good job of not taking the focus completely off our main little tin man. Canto continues to be an incredibly loveable character. There is a great scene between him and Aulaura that just makes you adore him even more and is another great character-building moment for Canto.


We have the same art team in Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 so the visuals continue to be wonderful as well. As you can tell from the cover we get some “scarecrow” action. I won’t spoil what that exactly pertains to, but I do just love that visual from Drew Zucker. I love me a good creepy scarecrow and Zucker pulls that off immensely well in this issue.

There is a ton of action in Canto II: The Hollow Men #2. Zucker gets to let loose a little bit as the group battles a variety of different creatures. As always, he does a fantastic job of depicting action, movement, and impact through his images. Great sense of energy throughout the pages. Also continued delightful character emotions and acting. Just great visual storytelling from Zucker.

Vittorio Astone on colors gives the issue a delightful “fall/autumn” type vibe, with the golden fields and orange-yellow type hue. There is that feel of changing seasons in this issue that I adore. It also fits perfectly for the time this issue is being released. 


Canto continues to deliver each and every issue. This new volume is off to a fantastic start and off in an exciting new direction. Canto continues to be a wonderful character that has been developed well. The creative team continues to just be firing on all cylinders. The story in Canto II: The Hollow Men #2 is a bit heartbreaking, but yet, uplifting as well. The group’s journey is off to a rocky start but hard times will never stop Canto!

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