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Review – Strange Academy #2 (Marvel Comics)

Strange Academy #2
Overall
7.8/10
7.8/10
  • Writing - 7/10
    7/10
  • Art - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Overall - 7.8/10
    7.8/10
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Strange Academy #2

Writer: Skottie Young 
Artist: Humberto Ramos
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Maturity Rating: Teen
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: July 8, 2020

Classes have begun at Strange Academy: 1st period, spells; 2nd period, magic items; 3rd period, magic history. It is a day full of wizardry and things the eyes won’t believe! 

 

Just Pure Magic: Strange Academy #2

Well, it has been a little while, but we are finally ready for the first day of classes in Strange Academy #2! Yes, the Marvel Universe’s first official school of magic for youngsters is ready to start the very first semester. First day of classes is always an eventful day at any school, but you never know what you are going to get at Strange Academy. Learn the secrets behind a magical item, a basic spell or two. What about a field trip to Hell? Oh, of course there is PE and Lunch. This, and maybe a zombie or two in the first day of classes in Strange Academy #2.

Strange Academy #2 (Marvel Comics) variant cover by Art Adams
Strange Academy #2 (Marvel Comics) variant cover by Art Adams

As the kids get excited for their first official day at the Academy we learn that some old rivalries die hard between the students. Others make new and interesting friends, and the faculty is a whole different story. But everything may not be what it seems at the Strange Academy. Is something nefarious at hand behind the scenes at the magic school?

Writing

Skottie Young picks up the business in Strange Academy #2. We are brought right back into the weird world of Marvel’s newest school. I think the whole COVID break hurt Strange Academy a little, in that it has a lot of characters and I remember next to nothing about them. It probably wouldn’t hurt to re-read the first issue as a refresher before digging into this one.

I think that large cast is a strong point, and yet, a hindrance for Strange Academy. For one, it gives you a lot of different story options and a lot of different characters for readers to latch onto. On the other hand, giving each of these characters time to develop in a 22-page comic is a bit of a stretch that Young does not quite deliver yet. It is hard to really get to “know” any of these characters.

Strange Academy #2 also does not deliver a real “hook” to the story yet. It still seems to be setting everything up. Which is okay, but by the end of the issue, there is not that “I can’t wait to read the next one” feel. All that being said, issue #2 is a fun issue and read. I mean, Young does a fantastic job of showcasing the different classes the students are in. I think all the characters are great, as well. Even though we do not get to know them that much, I want to know more about each and every one of them.

Art

Humberto Ramos brings his exuberant cartooning style to the pages of Strange Academy #2. He might be the perfect artist for the series. His cartooning style has a youthful vigor to it that is perfect for this school setting. Strange Academy #2 lets him let loose some wild visuals, as well. As the kids go from class to class, Ramos delivers some splendid artwork.

Great character work is showcased by Ramos throughout the issue. All the characters have tremendous individual looks to them that he captures perfectly. There is great motion, and an energy that Ramos brings out on the pages. Strange Academy #2 is just a fun book to look through the pages at.

Edgar Delgado does some splendid coloring work, as well. At times I wouldn’t mind it being a little brighter but, all in all, I like the little darker, more textured feel he brings to the story.

Conclusion

Strange Academy #2 is a bit of a conundrum for me. There is a lot to like in this issue. All the characters are interesting and it is tons of fun to travel with the kids from class to class. Visually, the book is fantastic and just brings you into the exciting, wild world that is Strange Academy. But there is not exactly a gripping story here yet. We don’t yet have a big connection with any of the characters, so it is hard to get fully involved in any “teenage” drama at this point. Issue #2 does tease some possible plot elements, but nothing certain or gripping right now.

Strange Academy #2 seems to be still setting up this new place in the Marvel universe, which is okay. Being something brand new, we do need to get familiar with it. I just hope going forward we get some more plot points and the characters get a little more building up as the series continues to grow.


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