Royal Nonesuch returns to the bizarre world of Kill Audio #2, published by Boom! Studios.
KILL AUDIO #2
Written by Claudio Sanchez
Drawn by Sheldon Vella
SC, 24 pgs, FC, (2 of 6) SRP: .99
COVER A: Sheldon Vella
COVER B: Chuck BB
Diamond Code: SEP090693
The world of Sight and Sound is in chaos and Kill Audio is its only savior! Reluctantly going along with a plan he knows little of, he is hoping to discover his mysterious past and learn why he cannot die (although not for lack of others trying!).
The surrealism of KILL AUDIO continues unabated in its second issue, but the narrative thread becomes infinitely stronger, as we now get a look at the title character's surprising origin. This issue is exactly what the story needed to follow up the relentless debut. KILL AUDIO #2 provides important grounding and context for all the craziness, and it makes the whole so much more compelling. Issue #1 set up the world, and issue #2 brings the reader into it.
Claudio Sanchez and Chondra Echert construct a wonderful narrative to justify the once seemingly arbitrary nature of this comic. The pace is still as anarchic as ever, but the reader can now care for the characters in a way they could not before, which is absolutely essential. The writers show that there was a method to the madness after all, and it is very reminiscent of Neil Gaiman's SANDMAN, in that it takes abstract concepts and gives them physical form. Kill Audio's mission, which he receives from what has to be one of the strangest representations of divinity in comics ever, is pretty shocking, and his origin, which ties into the origin of the universe, is absolutely mind blowing. All of this is layered upon constant strangeness and clever commentary on music, both as an industry and as a medium. There are even some surprisingly poignant character moments, which would have seemed unthinkable after the first issue.
Sheldon Vella's artwork is just as effective here as it was in the first issue. What's truly remarkable here is how detailed it all is. There isn't a single line or brushstroke that doesn't somehow enhance, and advance the story. From the silly shape of skyscrapers to overwhelming computer readouts to the bizarre collection of characters, the exaggerated, cartoony style lends plenty of texture to the story, and makes the world of KILL AUDIO completely believable. The odd sense of place may disorient the reader, but that only leads to repeated readings, which this type of comic needs anyway.
It's a tricky path to creating something this "out there," and then shaping it in such a way as to provide any kind of compelling direction, but Kill Audio #2 does just that. It is really an exceptional piece of work, and a very exciting story. The third issue cannot get here soon enough.
9.5 of 10