writer: Jonathan Hickman / artist: Nick Dragotta / Image Comics
If it wasn’t obvious through the first 18 issues (or any of Hickman’s other stuff), the dude is a genius. This issue, focusing exclusively on Bablyon aka The Beast aka Young Killa B, shows just how diverse Hickman is in his writing. The balance between humor, tech speak, plot and character progression are all on display with the same specific story thread and they really are quite impressive. After their run in with the “prophet” last issue, Balloon has a different approach in how to train Bablyon and yes, it is as nefarious as it sounds.
What also comes into play more so now than before is the difference between what Balloon shows Babylon and what is actually there. This could have huge repercussions of course, but Hickman has shown us hints at the problem solving of Babylon, so I do wonder at what point he becomes independent.
Dragotta draws a gorgeous book, doesn’t he? From the beginning, his interpretations of “Balloon Vision” and the real world have been great and stark, but his full page shots of Babylon are especially gorgeous this time around.
It really felt like Hickman was showing off this issue as Babylon “grows up” very quickly in an organic way. Dragotta is on point as usual and the world feels a little different by the end of it.