ADVANCE REVIEW! Double Jumpers #2 will go on sale August 29, 2012.
For those who need caught up, Double Jumpers follows a crew of MMO designers who switch places with the sword and sorcery game characters of their creation. The first issue was extremely readable and set a tone for the silliness and vulgarity that is reminiscent of an Adult Swim show. This issue is more of the same, which is a good, good thing for us readers.
The sarcasm and snark is strong. Much like the MMO crowd, everyone is ready with quick and appropriate comebacks. What I enjoy most about Double Jumpers is the hardcore, unabashed allegiance to nerd culture. With references to Star Wars, Star Trek, Donkey Kong and LARPING (and Good Will Hunting? I might be reading too much into that.) this venture is definitely built for a specific audience, and does its best to entertain its target demographic.
Conceptually, and visually, the comic is separate from most of the stuff on the stands, and the fresh premise does not disappoint. The narrative follows both the team of game engineers and the game characters, with more concentration on the latter. The script manages to produce some generic-enough antagonists for the displaced warriors, and much of the humor is associated with their acclimation to the real world. There are a lot of conveniences in this plot, like how quickly the Dungeon Lords seem to adapt to their environment, but those trip ups are minor. The purpose of this story is to make the reader smile and laugh, not tell a sci-fi epic.
The other side of the coin shows us the progress of the game developers stuck in a world they designed. Again this is more the same, characters going at each other's neck with vicious, trollish insults and strong physical humor. Dwonch's tone for the individual characters tends to hits the same frequency, but he nails the quirks of a specific brand of geekdom.
As a whole the art is very strong, balancing a slightly animated style with excellent anatomy and action. Bill Blankenship steps his game up from the previous issue, particularly with the coloring. The quality of rendering is there too, and the detail shows in the lush urban and fantasy backgrounds.
Action Lab is rising as a publisher that can produce legitimately original and energetic work. Double Jumpers is a damn fun read — a little facetious, but as a whole it's a book that made me chuckle. The pacing is a little weird, and it will be interesting to see how well this idea ends. I commend Dwonch and Blankenship in providing us with a novel and entertaining comic, but challenge them to deliver more in the second half of this miniseries.
Though it's subject material and humor is focused on a certain audience, Double Jumpers is worth a look. Very few print comics go for the funny these days, so let's support one tries to make blackened-soul jerks like me smile once in awhile.
Jamil Scalese is just like you — an avid comics reader and lover of sequential art. Residing in Pittsburgh, PA, he is an unapologetic Deadpool fan, devotee of the Food Network and proud member of Steelers Nation. Check out his original, ongoing webcomic And Then There Were Zombies and follow his subpar tweeting at @jamilscalese.