The Rocketeer is one of those comic book super hero series that fully embraces our silly, childhood fantasies. It takes outdated concepts and turns them into some of the greatest adventures ever to hit comics. Cargo of Doom #1 re-introduced both fans and newcomers of the series to the world of The Rocketeer, and it was one of the best comic books I read last month. The second issue of this series is no different, and continues to deliver the action, mystery, and laughs that The Rocketeer is so well-known and loved know for.
Cargo of Doom #2 begins with the yet unnamed “Master” speaking with a man who apparently is calling all of the shots in this sketchy operation. Standing before a bloodied and beaten Guptmann, the Master explains that he wants The Rocketeer’s jet pack so they can launch an arial assault to an unknown location. The man on the phone won’t allow it, and after a brief argument the Master hears a commotion coming from the cargo hold. He is then attacked and wounded by some large, scaled creature, and after presumably maiming or killing it, he finds out that it was the mysterious man who set the animal free. Furious, the Master orders that he and his crew go after The Rocketeer.
This is the main plot of this month’s issue of The Rocketeer. Cliff is chased down and hunted for his beloved jet pack, and until the end of the issue he has no idea why. I won’t ruin the surprise, but Mark Waid certainly made my child hood dreams come true. I will say, however, that a certain island that holds a giant ape makes a cameo appearance, and it is hilarious. I didn’t believe what I saw at first, but after looking at it for fifteen minutes, I finally believed it. You are seriously in for a treat.
Just like the previous issue, the action takes only a few pages to get going, and the lack of blank spaces certainly adds the excitement. I love how Waid doesn’t waste any time going from scene to scene; once one is over, he gets right to the next one with no time wasted. The action and mystery, accompanied by Chris Samnee’s art, is just absolutely perfect. I’m usually not a fan of cartoony drawings and violence, but they two just fit together so well with The Rocketeer. After seeing the ending, having a more realistic art style would damage the overall effect on the reader.
The only thing I have to complain about is the love triangle between Betty, Cliff, and Sally. There is clearly no attraction to Sally on Cliff’s side, and seeing Betty get so worked up over it is frustrating. I understand that Waid is sticking true to her character, but it just feels rather forced.
After two outstanding issues, I can’t wait to see what else Waid and Samnee have in store for us. Seriously, even if you aren’t familiar with The Rocketeer, this is a series you should absolutely keep an eye on.