By Mike Mignola, John Arcudi, Tonci Zonjic & Dave Stewart
Last month, I discussed the crazy potential for the current Lobster Johnson mini-series to really give fans a peak into this enigmatic vigilante’s backstory. Well, hot damn! Get the Lobster #2 has really started exploring some potential history of the Lobster in much greater detail than previously anticipated, and much sooner too! Whether or not any of Cindy Tynan’s research ends up being accurate, this is one heck of a story.
Mike Mignola first introduced the character of Lobster Johnson many years ago in the pages of Hellboy. With the help of John Arcudi, this character has since seen a lot of action and become much more fleshed out in many of his own mini-series. Despite this, readers still know practically nothing about this mysterious character’s true background. This is what makes Get the Lobster #2 so immensely satisfying, as Cindy is currently writing a new feature column aptly titled Who is the Lobster? This latest installment starts to provide some potential answers to this question, and they are far more fascinating and strange than we could’ve imagined. While it has yet to be determined whether or not her research is accurate, the flashback stories told through Cindy’s reading were absolutely fantastic. Stretching right back to the end of the age of high-seas piracy, jumping to colonial America, and even including some bizarre shape shifting offspring, this made the latest issue one wild read. This was probably one of the coolest things Mignola and Arcudi could have done for long-time Mignolaverse fans.
Aside from the fascinating research into the Lobster’s history, this issue was packed with a host of other interesting developments and exciting action. The local police are zealously pursuing the Lobster’s capture like never before. While the titular protagonist is typically found pitted against increasingly bizarre supernatural threats, it was actually really interesting and fun to see him locked into a timeless conflict of the classic vigilante, being hunted by the law for dealing out his own brand of violent justice. The action as the Lobster escapes his pursuers was terrific and well-paced. The true character of this enigmatic hero feels like it’s coming out in a more tangible way through his more frequent and frank interactions with Cindy Tynan as well. Furthermore, there are plenty of moments included which push forth the other story elements underlying Get the Lobster, including the bizarre murderous wrestlers from last month and yet another mysterious ending!
Artist extraordinaire Tonci Zonjic returns for another run in the saga of Lobster Johnson, and the artwork in Get the Lobster #2 is pitch-perfect for this particular character. While still retaining a similar feel to the many other artists who regularly contribute to the greater Mignolaverse, Zonjic’s work on this series also has a very classic and pulp/noir sensibility. The subtle minimalism employed works in favor of this overall appearance, while the visuals still appear very well-detailed. The character designs are fantastic and really help convey a sense of the era in which this story takes place, and the facial expressions are spot on throughout the book. The action sequences are very dynamic and energetic, and these particular scenes flow really well. There’s also quite a bit more variability in this issue, relatively speaking, given the awesome flashback scenes during Tynan’s research. As always, Dave Stewart is just phenomenal. This guy is a true legend in the comic book industry, as his colors never cease to enhance any story he works on. The classic pulp feel of the latest Lobster Johnson installment is really helped by Stewart’s contributions and again, the era of this story is conveyed perfectly through the specific tones used.
As a long-time fan of anything with Mignola’s name on it, it was still surprising to see just how terrific this latest issue of Lobster Johnson was. This really was a perfect book that hit all the right notes for any fan of this character. This issue has action, excitement, a ton of intriguing mystery, and really started to provide some very interesting potential backstory for the Lobster himself. This was both a perfect Mignolaverse book and also a perfect pulp-action book, and easily among the very best yarn featuring Lobster Johnson.