‘Canto II: The Hollow Men #1’ - Advance Comic Book Review

A fable of heroes and time. Canto II, the sequel to the original Canto story published last year, is a charming continuation of the clockwork knight and his almost David vs. Goliath fight for freedom for himself and the other clockwork people. The creators have stated many times that they were inspired by Dante’s Inferno and The Wizard of Oz, which shows in both the style of storytelling and the characters themselves.

Now, I did not read the original Canto series, and, for what it is worth, I didn't need to (though now I want to), because like in true fable fashion, the creators did an epic recap storybook style in the first few pages. In the previous story, our clockwork hero Canto fights the Shrouded Man for his true love and for the freedom of his people, all of which have had their hearts removed by the mysterious villain and replaced with clocks. Epic, right? Canto now lives with his people in a new land free of the Shrouded Man, but they believe his presence will someday be upon them again. Just like the Amazons, they train to always be prepared for a threat. The art itself is simple and - well, let's be honest - adorable. The little clockwork knights are just cute.

It actually really surprised me when I googled this title that IDW didn’t really promote it as a middle grade comic. 11-year-old me would have eaten this up. Maybe now that we are in a pandemic and digital sales of middle grade and early reader titles are up, there will be a focused promotion for that age group. The themes and content are age appropriate, and the art lends itself to a more youthful demographic.

To any parents reading this, be sure to pick up Canto II for your child between the ages of 9 and 12 if they are a fan of quirky, fantastical epics. If you are an adult, it’s still a fun read. Go and grab a copy at your local comic book shop!

Creative Team: David M. Booher (Author) Drew Zucker (Artist, Cover Artist) Vittorio Astone (Colorist)
Publisher:  IDW Publishing
Click here to purchase.

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