writer: Mark Millar / artist: Sean Gordon Murphy / Image Comics
Chrononauts #2 moved in a direction unexpected. We left issue #1 with the more responsible half of the duo, Quinn, having been sucked back in time through a machine of his creation. His partner Reilly, the heroic dudebro, dove in after him. Reilly lands in 1504 to search for his friend, and Quinn is…
…hey, where is Quinn?
The span between Quinn’s transport and Reilly’s leaves them separated by some time, and issue #2 is dedicated to showing what Quinn’s been doing with his 2-minute head start. The issue is fun and lighthearted with its Entourage style bromance, and helps inform the boundaries of this time travel universe, if only a little. Time travel stories are tricky to tell – Are they parallel dimensions? Do their actions affect the present? – and inconsistency or lack of clarity around the “rules” can make for a frustrating story; you do your part by suspending your disbelief and the story needs to meet you halfway by explaining the world’s limits. Chrononauts hasn’t done it yet, but it’s still obviously early, and readers can surmise certain things so far.
In a book that has the potential to tackle some really difficult themes it’ll be interested to see which direction Millar and Murphy choose to move. Chrononauts is set up towards commentary on hedonism, selfishness, relationships; you can even read into casual suggestions towards depression. Or, it can be pure comedy-adventure and choose not to take itself so seriously. It depends on how they pivot, and as a reader those possibilities keep me interested this early on.
Whichever path taken, expect Chrononauts to stay funny. The pacing in this issue made for sudden transitions as Quinn and Reilly travel through time, and the result is a comic book’s equivalent to great comedic timing. Sean Gordon Murphy’s artwork continues to be great, with scenes spanning across centuries, landscapes, and technologies. Pick up this series now so you can be fully informed when debating fan casting choices when Chrononauts goes to film.
You can read the review of Chrononauts #1 here.