The first issue of Skyward was an epic beginning, with battles, betrayal, mysteries, mythical creatures, and a desperate fight for survival against greater odds. Skyward #2 scales back the action just a bit, focusing less on the fantastical world in which the comic is set, and more on driving the story itself.
At the end of #1, the young boy Quinn was running for his life, being pursued by Slog-Riders (mythical monsters who ride other mythical monsters) after losing both of his parents, his home, and everything he held dear—except his faithful dog. #2 picks up with a different storyline and a different set of characters. Teenaged Abigail and her annoyingly persistent friend Jon are out in the woods with some of the other local townspeople, trying to keep the town safe from monsters, which have of late been acting out of character, showing up where they shouldn’t be and frightening/attacking people. We saw an example of this in issue #1, as well.
The group comes across the burnt remains of Quinn’s family home and concludes that something unspeakably awful must have happened. So, Abigail, an expert tracker, tries to piece together the events, and we see Quinn’s flight from the Slog-Riders unfold as she follows the tracks.
It’s not a new storytelling technique, of course, but it’s something different from the norm, and it can be interesting and effective if done well—and Skyward #2 does it well. It makes the story compelling even without the epic scale of the first issue—perhaps even more compelling in its own way.
The artwork is good—colorful and interesting—and has a bit of a “children’s cartoon” vibe to it, which, considering that it’s a children’s comic, is probably a good thing. Children should enjoy this, and adults probably will, too. It leaves us looking forward to the next issue.
Skyward #1 was a bit on the formulaic side as far as story went, but had great action. Skyward #2 goes smaller on the action, but has a better story, and tells it better. Hopefully, Skyward #3 will find a good balance of both.