Far Sector #2
Deron Bennett (letterer), Jamal Campbell (artist), Maggie Howell (assistant editor), N. K. Jemisin (writer), Andy Khouri (editor)
DC’s Young Animal
December 11, 2019
The cover of Far Sector #2 implies that there’s some downtime. when we open to the first page, Sojourner “Jo” Mullein, dressed in a green suit and clip-clopping heels, marches across a stark landscape to sit in a Matrix-esque green chair and catch us up a bit on what went on in the last issue. But the tranquility of these two scenarios are quickly blown apart by the urgency of Jo’s mission. Investigating her first murder and the City Enduring’s first murder in 500 years, Jo has no time for these narrative interludes, because the murderer has just been murdered and the murderer’s murderer is getting away.
Leaping back into the action, the first few pages of Far Sector #2 are all about motion as Jo chases down the perpetrator. Last issue, Jamal Campbell’s use of Jo’s Green Lantern abilities were soft and subtle. Here, Jo has no time to waste on subtly and politeness, using a giant arm to clear a path through the crowd and whip her around corners as fast as possible. These scenes are all about motion and it’s hard not to get swept up in that feeling as Jo then launches herself into the air in pursuit. On the ground, Campbell’s lines are all about the confident, graceful, forceful press forward, but when Jo takes to the air, the fear of heights she spoke about in the last issue takes over. We see her anxiety in her jerky movements and awkward poses, as well as her interactions with other sky dwellers.
Jo’s interactions are the focus of this issue. When the perpetrator gets away, she’s left to find other ways to piece together the mystery behind the murder. There actually are some moments of downtime after the heated opening chase, including moments spent with her partner, who endearingly attempts to replicate that coffee experience for her human friend and former lover. Later, Jo reminds us and herself that dealing with the upper members of the Trilogy races is a deadly game, especially when at least two of them find her to be delicious. She keeps having to remind herself of the danger, particularly when she finds at least one of them delicious too and realizes that her emotions aren’t the only ones going a little wonky.
In the City Enduring, all members of the three races are supposed to partake of the Emotion Exploit that suppresses all emotions. Though the physical actions related to emotion still manifest in expected ways, the people don’t actually feel anything, which makes Jo—and the murderers—an anomaly. Her control of her emotions despite having no artificial controls in place makes her a fascinating enigma for some, and Campbell and Jemisin work harmoniously to depict the different ways this plays depending on who Jo is dealing with. From friendly banter to thinly veiled threats to getting a groove on, the duo expertly paints a picture of who Jo is and where she fits in this world, even though she’s definitely not a part of it.
There’s little progress on the resolution of the case in this issue, but that’s not to say the pacing has slowed down. Jemisin is taking her time in telling this twelve-part story. As the first Black woman to wield the Lantern ring, it’s worth it in order to truly savour Sojourner’s journey.