Sea of Stars #2 // Review
Gil Starx has always considered himself to be a lucky man. He’s stranded in space far from his son with only limited power left in his spacesuit. Real lucky. The first issue of Sea of Stars focussed primarily on Gil’s son. The second issue focusses on Gil himself as he is faced with a number of unspeakable dangers in an issue written by Jason Aaron and Dennis Hallum with art by Stephen Green. Aaron and Hallum’s story continues to tumble through a pulpy, fun space adventure with bits of wit peppering the edges of the action.
At the end of the previous issue, Gil Starx disappeared into the gullet of a moon-sized space Leviathan. Having fended-off the Leviathan’s gut parasites, he’s lucky enough to escape certain death. His ship, however, remains in the Leviathan’s stomach. What’s more, Gil’s son Kadyn is nowhere to be seen. If he can make the power on his spacesuit last long enough to find a derelict space ship, he might be able to repair it. But first, he’s going to have to deal with mutant plants and a persistent security droid. (And there’s also the small matter of the ship being low on shields.)
Aaron and Hallum pack a hell of a lot into this second issue. Gil comes across as a very heroic rough and tumble figure who gets banged around and beaten up A LOT. In Sea of Stars, space is a dangerous place with all manner of deadly monstrous predators. Peeled away from his son, Gil is given the opportunity to float, crawl and pummel his way through danger in an issue with punishment on every page. Once more, Aaron and Hallum are navigating the pulpy space adventure through a fun, quickly-paced adventure. With flashbacks to the death of Gil’s wife, Aaron and Hallum are also laying some promising groundwork for a solid family drama. That will doubtlessly be added into the mix as the series progresses.
Green keeps the alien adventure weird and wonderful with strange-looking ET monsters. The adventure is firmly rooted in Gil’s trials in space. The momentum of the action feels satisfyingly relentless in Green’s hands. As much as Aaron and Hallum mix-up the action, it would feel really repetitious without Green’s cleverly kinetic sense of action shooting, scratch, crawling and creeping and floating through the issue. Gil goes through A LOT in 20 pages, but thanks to Green’s dynamic sense of motion, the issue moves with giddy, breezy pacing. The strange fantasy pages with Kadyn at the end of the issue allow Green to vividly deliver a sense of wonder that carries the story into the next issue.
Sea of Stars is firmly established by the end of the second issue. Gil’s rough and tumble adventure will be paired against the fantastic, foreboding mystery of Kadyn’s end of the story. It’s a nice contrast that allows the creative team to explore the galaxy from a couple of different sides. There’s nothing terribly new here, but Aaron, Hallum, and Green make the adventure fun enough to overcome the sometimes cheesy nature of pulpy space adventure.