Review – Empowered and the Soldier of Love #2

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Review – Empowered and the Soldier of Love #2

Sexy superheroine Empowered is still battling the Soldier of Love (the evil Magical Girl with a love gun and a massive chip on her shoulder) (and a magical pangolin) (you heard me) and Ninjette is Not. Being. Helpful. See below for a review of Adam Warren and Karla Diaz’s Empowered and the Soldier of Love #2.

(Minor spoilers follow.)

(Oh, and in the header image, that’s Ocelotina kissing what looks like Syndablokk. Kissing him on the lips. On his face. I don’t know what you thought she was doing, but I’m not judging you.)

The first thing that jumped out at me is that Ninjette is drinking the entire issue. Yes she drinks a lot usually, and yes the lovey-dovey heroes are enough to drive anybody to drink, but she’ll usually take a break when she’s working at least, and now she’s literally carrying a bottle into battle. My guess is this is part of the Solder of Love’s influence, but maybe unintentionally: maybe the love powers that are turning every supercape in the city into drooling piles of infatuation are affecting Ninjette differently? Addiction rewires the pleasure centers of the brain, so I’m going to stick with this theory.

The other thing that jumps out at me is how calm Capitan Rivet is being. I know he’s made of metal, and it’d be tempting to think the Soldier of Love’s powers don’t affect him at all, but I think that’s too easy. He did get the giggles one time when Emp was in a particularly ridiculous situation, so he’s not emotionless. It could be that he and Emp haven’t been deliberately targeted (yet) because she’s also keeping it together.

Which makes you wonder who’s behind the Soldier of Love, why’s Emp been left alone till now, and how bad are things going to get?

Enough speculation: the story, obviously, is intriguing. It’s the usual Adam Warren layering effect: on the top we’ve got lots of people making out with each other and sending super explicit texts. But underneath we’ve got a mystery to solve, and it feels like we’re being given clues to the answer the whole way. And under that we’ve got statements about love and infatuation, and bitterness and disappointment, and how people handle things when they’re at the extremes of either side.

(I could go on about how smart Adam’s writing is, but I do that a lot. Moving on…)

(Side note: yes a few phrases are in Spanish, but even if you don’t speak it, and I don’t, Google Translate was more than adequate.)

Karla Diaz’s art continues to be extremely fun; she’s got a new take on familiar characters that’s different enough to be interesting but familiar enough to be comfortable. And I love the colors from beginning to end.

The countdown’s started for the final issue. How is Emp going to be affected? Why’s Ninjette drinking so much? What happened to the Soldier of Love to turn her into such a b…itter person? And where the heck is Thug Boy?

The answers, we can assume, in one month.