Reviews

Review – Leaders of the Free World #2

Leaders of the Free World #2 main cover (detail) by Eli Johnson
Leaders of the Free World #2
Overall
7.7/10
7.7/10
  • Writing - 7.8/10
    7.8/10
  • Art - 7.5/10
    7.5/10
  • Overall - 7.7/10
    7.7/10
Sending
User Review
5 (1 vote)

Leaders of the Free World #2

Writer: Corey Pruitt 
Artist: Elijah Isaiah Johnson
Letterer: Toben Racicot
Flatter: Aaron Haye Johnson

The Godsend are attacking and only a few “heroes” have the powers to stop them. Will they break the law and come together, or is it already too little, too late?

 

Our Heroes Assemble in Leaders of the Free World #2

Hey, everyone, I am back with an actual new comic book review! But it’s a comic book you can’t get right now (unless you backed the Kickstarter). I am talking about Leaders of the Free World #2. I reviewed the first issue, which you can read here and purchase on comiXology here. In the first issue, we are introduced to a few of our characters and the basic plot points.

New

Leaders of the Free World #2 alternate cover by Matt Olson
Leaders of the Free World #2 alternate cover by Matt Olson

In a nutshell, a group known as the Godsend has given some people powers. People are regulated to stay within their countries’ boundaries to use those powers. In Leaders of the Free World #2, the Godsend has decided to take those powers away and destroy Earth. It is up to our powered heroes (not given powers by the Godsend) to come together and save the planet.

In issue #2 we are introduced to our last two team members, Medic and Dr. Seance. Medic, the daughter of the Angel of War and Angel of Mercy, is a doctor with the powers to heal you or break you. Dr. Seance a magical enemy who, for some reason, is fighting to help save the world. As the Godsend attack, Tech-Neek, Eco, Cong Li try to fend off their powerful foes. But with their most powerful member, Moonshine, under the influence and out of the fight, can these two new heroes come and turn the tide?

Writing

I was excited to get my copy of Leaders of the Free World #2. Corey Pruitt did a solid job of building this world in the first issue and I have been wanting more. I have been wanting to learn more about Medic and Dr. Seance, and this issue does not disappoint. I won’t spoil anything, but Dr. Seance has a tremendously interesting backstory and is a character you will be clamoring to know more about. Medic, just by design, is a favorite of mine. I am more of a “street-level” hero person and she fits right in that mold. Her being a doctor with the power to hurt and heal has an interesting dynamic that Pruitt can play with in later issues.

With only two new characters to introduce in Leaders of the Free World #2, Pruitt gets a little more time to delve into what is going on. Plus with this world’s foundation already laid down, Pruitt gets into the meat of the story. This is a pretty action-packed issue and Pruitt lets artist Elijah Isaiah Johnson weave the story of these characters as well. 

World

I enjoyed the way the story was broken up. Pruitt felt a little more stable with this issue and a little more comfortable. The pacing was well done, as the story speeds up and slows down appropriately as the team slowly gets together and battles against the Godsend and their forces. I do think I still need a little bit more clarity with what is happening story-wise. I think we still need a little “downtime” with all these characters to build a bigger connection.

Pruitt does delve into a little more into the Moonshine character and her drinking problem. Cong Li continues to be extremely energetic and just a fun, youthful character. There are so many interesting aspects to these characters that it is hard not to feel a little disappointed when we don’t get to know them all that well. Again, though, great introduction to the character Dr. Seance. Man, Pruitt does an incredible job of introducing him and making him very interesting from the get-go.

Art

The art I feel was a huge step up from the previous issue. Elijah Isaiah Johnson has some incredible pages in this issue. Though there is still some trouble with characters’ facial expressions and some perspective issues at times, overall, the art looks solid. The introduction of the character Medic steals the show from the jump of the issue for me. It is a spectacular two-page spread showing her battling through several hospital wings and floors. It has shades of one of my favorite artists, David Aja. Just a wonderful sequence showing her fighting prowess. Then it ends with a great full-page “hero pose shot”. Just splendid work from Johnson in that whole sequence.

There is also great background detail in Leaders of the Free World #2. If you read my reviews you know I am a stickler for it, and Johnson delivers it. The hospital actually feels like a real hospital with beds, medical equipment, and such. Johnson does a fantastic job of making the world feel “real”. He also does great detail in vehicles and Tech-Neek’s robotics. The robotic designs and other vehicles all look smashing.

I think the MVP of Leaders of the Free World #2 is letterer Toben Racicot. There are a lot of different lettering things going on in the issue and Racicot nails it. Top-notch work.

Incoming

The art is a delightful improvement. The battle scenes are great. Some wonderful details and just fun energetic art throughout the issue. There are some fantastic two-page spreads throughout the issue. Just some exquisite background details, and I cannot say enough good things about these character designs.

The issue isn’t perfect, though. The story does feel a bit jumbled at times. I think maybe a little “slower” issue is needed to get us more in tune with these characters. The story feels a little too frantic at times and needs a “centering” piece. The art also does have some hiccups. At times the faces of characters feel really off and sometimes some perspective shots feel kind of off or odd, issues with angles and character proportions. There is definitely still room for more improvement and a few things are lacking for this to really be something great. But the creators are on the right track.

Free World

I think Leaders of the Free World #2 is a definite improvement from the first issue. Not that the first issue is bad or anything. But with most of the introduction behind him, Pruitt gets a chance to spread his wings a bit more, and I think with coming issues he can really get us into the heads of these characters. Man, these characters, all of them are extremely interesting and wholly original and I can’t wait to know more about all of them.

Even with some flaws, this issue is extremely fun and a great read that I can say you won’t be disappointed when you are able to purchase it. Full disclosure: obviously I backed this issue on Kickstarter, as I did the first issue. But as most know, I judge every comic book on the same scale and I am happy with the improvements that this team has made, and very excited to see what they do next with these characters. Be looking for Leaders of the Free World #2 to drop on comiXology sometime in the future.


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About the author

Brent Jackson

Brent is happily married and an avid comic book consumer who loves nothing more than the smell of comics in the morning and diving through a long box of back issues. By day he is a nutritionist and has also been training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for over 10 years. He is probably not the coolest person you have ever met. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @brentjackson30

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