Spider-Man is being stabbed by Taskmaster while being held down by Doc Ock's arms on the Devil's Reign #2 cover..

Devil’s Reign #2 Review

Written by: Chip Zdarsky

Art by: Marco Checchetto

Coloring by: Marcio Menyz

Lettering by: Clayton Cowles

Devil’s Reign #2 continues the excellence of the last issue. The thing that immediately stands out to me is how this issue isn’t just here to build things up for later issues. This issue continues the consequences of the last issue and shows heroes getting their asses kicked. Spider-Man nearly dies, Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman are in prison, the Avengers are on the run, and the villains are only getting more powerful.

Half of Devil’s Reign #2 does have a bit of setup, don’t get me wrong. It’s just nice when issues of an event pace themselves well so there isn’t an issue that’s just transitionary. I might be overrating this problem with event comics, but I could name a few that felt like that, one finishing just last week from Marvel. That’s enough to make me keep an eye out.

The Superior Four get ready under Doctor Octopus's command, with Doc Ock versions of Ghost Rider, Hulk, and Wolverine behind him.
This is just weird and I love it.

But even the build-up here is incredibly interesting. It allows the issue to feel fast where it needs to be, and slow where it should be. Little moments, like Luke Cage getting kids to delete a video when Iron Man couldn’t punctuate the themes of the story. At the same time, we still get to see Taskmaster kick the crap out of Spider-Man, even knocking him out of a skyscraper with no powers.

My only grievance with this issue seems to be how it takes Elektra off the board. I understand that she’s probably going to come back in the eleventh hour to make the save. It just feels so arbitrarily random right now. The Kingpin is the villain of this event, and she’s Daredevil. I feel like she should be taking the lead ahead of Matt Murdock, not going off on a ninja mission.

Not to mention, it feels so weird and out of character for Fisk to deal with the Hand at all. Why would he know ninjas to seek out? But honestly, this is a minor nitpick.

Devil’s Reign #2 Hits the Right Spot

So far this event series is everything an event should be, and I expect that to continue. If Devil’s Reign maintains the quality of its #1 and #2 issues, this will be in my top ten list of comics next year most likely. To be honest, even if it ended poorly, we’d still have all these absolutely gorgeous panels to look at.

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