Of all the new series that have debuted in 2023 thus far it was Marc Guggenheim and Justin Greenwood’s Torrent that I was left with the best first impression from. The first issue of this series did an excellent job at introducing us to a new superhero world with characters that immediately caught my attention. So going into the second issue I am excited to see how Guggenheim and Greenwood pick up from the ending of Torrent #1. With that in mind I was lucky enough to get an early look at the second issue. Scroll below to check out our advance review of Torrent #2.
Writer: Marc Guggenheim
Artist: Justin Greenwood
Colorist: Rico Renzi
Letterer: Keith Wood
When a story starts with a flash forward plot device that is always something of a concern. We’ve seen through various forms of media that flash forward teases are used to keep fans hooked to find out how we got there. That problems with decompression through flash forwards is something that Marc Guggenheim, Justin Greenwood, and Rico Renzi are already showing they understand with Torrent #2. With this second issue they immediately show this series won’t just be about getting us to that flash forward. That was just one aspect to a world with many stories to tell leading up to and after the flash forward.
The confidence in the world that has been created for the Torrent series is highlighted by how Michelle Metcalf is portrayed. As we saw with the first issue, Michelle’s personal and Crackerjack superhero lives finally met the results was disastrous. Even as an experienced superhero there was nothing in all she has done as Crackerjack that could’ve prepared Michelle for a villain murdering her husband and kidnapping her son. It was the example of why superheroes work hard to maintain their personal and superhero lives separate. How quickly the environment of a normal family life can quickly crumble really resonates.
Throughout Torrent #2 we see how Michelle goes about approaching things as an experienced hero with connections to a straight up vigilante. Seeing how Michelle goes through tackling dealing with the villain that has taken everything from her made every scene compelling to read. The Crackerjack that threw out one-liners while fighting villains fade away slowly as Michelle dealt with different roadblocks.
What made the road Michelle took better is how it was a gateway to dive deeper into the world of Torrent. The way this life altering event impacts Michelle works as an entry point to the superhero world of Torrent. There are elements of the Avengers and Guardians of the Globe with the other heroes we get introduced to.
While we don’t spend a lot of time with these other heroes, we get enough to understand their personalities and their relationship with Michelle. Its enough character work that their greater roles in the story are strong moments that come across as payoffs.
With everything that goes down in Torrent #2 the story moves in a direction with even more potential while building a big bad you hate as the reader. What made the villain work is not because of what they accomplished but how they did it. Not only did they devastate Michelle’s life but forced her to make a decision that is game changing for this world. By the end you are left wondering what the villain will do next and how Michelle will deal with things in her life.
Greenwood and Renzi artwork improved over what we saw in the first issue. The more Greenwood draws Torrent the more we will see him grow comfortable with this superhero world. We see that with how Greenwood utilizes up close shots to various character faces to emphasize different back-and-forths we have in Torrent #2. It added to the drama we see play out during the story. The action also hit well with good energy as the choreography in Torrent #2 was more hard hitting than the more agile fighting we saw in the first issue. It all pops off the screen with how Renzi colors all of Greenwood’s penciling.
Torrent #2 is another excellent entry in what is already one of the best comic books on the market today. Marc Guggenheim creates a compelling narrative around Michelle Metcalf dealing with how the family and superhero life she built was completely shattered. That narrative is brought to life by the strong artwork by Justin Greenwood and Rico Renzi. The results lead to a comic book you are left wanting to read the next issue of right away.
Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8.5 Night Girls out of 10