Collapser #1 was quite the trip for the first book that I dove into from the DC Young Animal imprint. I was surprised by everything that this creative team did to turn a story about a guy with a black hole inside of him into something that makes you anticipate what comes next. I know I was anxious because this guy is one of the last people you want to throw a power that takes some time to understand.
This second issue played big into Liam James’ anxiety disorder. Collapser #2 picks up right where the first issue left off with Liam finding himself trapped in Stonehenge. There was a big difference between knowing that he would accidentally destroy this structure, and seeing it yourself. It was from that point that the true madness of his life really began. As I said above, the last thing you really want to do is put a black hole inside the chest of someone who is not all there upstairs. If you know what it means to have an anxiety disorder, then you know that the most important thing for that person is stability. His life was already falling apart, this just ended up being that kick to sink the ship. Having this power inside of him is pretty much a catalyst for more chaos to enter his life. What followed that was one heck of a unique scene they set in motion. That was the first real taste of his powers at work, and it was hard to say if even we could piece together what was happening. All we really knew was that visually it was all delightful as if you took that one pill that throws you down the rabbit hole.
While I did say that the first issue flipped Liam’s life right on its head. It was really with this second that they hit the ground running to achieve this. They also wasted very little time to show us what Liam’s life could look like being exposed to all of these things that he doesn’t understand, and can’t explain. This is definitely where you could say that his anxiety disorder was further exacerbated. How do you tell reality from fiction when the two have come clashing in your mind? This made you sympathize with Liam, but at the same time it made you wonder when in the world he was going to find clarity in this new reality. Especially if in a world like this you would be seen as crazy. This issue moved pretty fast, so that didn’t take long to get to by the end. Still you might be left scratching your head, but this is a mystery you want to see unfolded.
This issue was a big step up for this art team. Not that there was anything wrong with their work with the first issue, but that was fairly tame in contrast to what they produced in this one. They went wild with the new reality that was set on top of Liam’s world. Between the creativeness of all these things Liam couldn’t help seeing and , and that genuine look of anxiety written on his face, this was a roller coaster that didn’t stop till the end. There was a couple of scenes that blew me away compared to everything else. Those surprisingly dealt with the capturing of this power in action. Trippy almost didn’t feel like the right word at that point. I might also go with mind-bending just for the way that they warped that cosmic aura into panels, and guided them from one page into the next. That second scene was the highlight of this issue when it was our first true glimpse of what this power can do. I love how the design of a page can really change based on the use of circles. It’s a simple theme that works.
If the first issue didn’t get you, this second one surely should! When it comes to a book like Collapser, you want to aim for satisfaction, even if it is pretty early. These first issue issues throw both us and Liam right into the fire in a way that gets you excited for what comes next. We know as much about this black hole, or Collapser, as Liam. Part of the thrill is how we figure this out before Liam’s world comes crashing down.