Goosebumps: Secret of the Swamp returns for a second issue, continuing the adventures of Blake and Lilly as they head into the monster-infested swamp surrounding their town.
The first issue of this series was a really great introduction, and showcased these characters a lot; unfortunately, issue #2 really suffers by being a middle issue, and because the characters are left spending every single page either running through the woods to escape werewolves, or arguing with each other, nothing much actually happens here. The issue begins with the two leads being confronted by a trio of huge wolf monsters wearing ragged clothes, forcing the teens to flee into the woods to escape.
After managing to get away from the beasts the two girls get into an argument about why they even came into the woods in the first place, with Blake feeling like she’d been lied to by Lilly. Lilly, on the other hand, suddenly reveals that her parents perform patrols of the swamp, equipped with weapons in order to protect the town from the monsters within. She even gives Blake a special net launching ball to help defend herself with. Unfortunately, this revelation can’t be gone into in any great depth as they’re once again beset by werewolves, and have to run for their lives.
And that’s pretty much everything that happens in issue two. Obviously the conversations between the two girls are longer, and the running through the woods is a bit more dramatic, but nothing is really added to the story this issue, other than a vague hint that there might be something more going on that Blake is unaware of.
I honestly don’t think this is any fault of the writer, Marieke Nijkamp, but more down to the fact that comic structures often mean that some issues are left hanging for content, and when viewed on their own can feel like something of a letdown. However, in combination with the previous issue this is a pretty solid second part, and sets stuff up nicely for the third issue. The art by Yasmin Florez Montanez is also still superb, and I love how she draws the characters and puts a lot of life and emotion into them during both the chase sequences and the arguments.
Whilst this issue on its own isn’t brilliant, I’m still enjoying the series as a whole, and very much looking forward to seeing what happens next.
Goosebumps: Secret of the Swamp #2 is out on 4th November from IDW Publishing.