Death is Just The Beginning in “Reborn” #2 (Review)
Written by: Mark Millar
Art by: Greg Capullo
After the head dizzying happenings in issue #1 its easy to understand Bonnie’s first words in issue #2 “It’s unbelievable.” Indeed it is Bonnie, for all of us as well as we behold this lush and vibrant world that Mark Millar has thrust us into with so many questions to be answered and even more to be asked. Luckily a little bit more of the veil hiding Reborn’s secrets is slowly lifted by Bonnie’s father. While leading Bonnie to our first look at the city of Adystria he explains to her that when people die they are reborn at various ages. He tells her that he was reborn as a three year old but he has no idea about the reasons why or what dictates the age your reborn as, he also tells her that there is no going back to her old life. Each morsel Millar gives us about the world of Reborn only accentuates the need to learn more about this fantastical realm and the rules that govern it. He has thus far found an uncanny balance that serves to not leave us grasping in the dark for too long while still keeping so much un-illuminated.
As Bonnie and her father near Adystria we are given our first look at the city itself. The city is laid out like a tapestry of humanities’ cultures. Our first view is a quaint water mill style home surrounded by buildings with architectural influences from ancient Asia as well as Italian Tuscan, all in the shadow of an ultra modern skyscraper flanked by numerous other buildings with equally diversity.
This serves to drive home the harmonic mesh of people from every corner of the Earth living in Adystria. As they enter the town they are surrounded by a mob of hopeful citizens driven into a celebratory frenzy for reasons unknown to Bonnie. She’s informed by her dad that everyone is so excited to see her. Her coming has been foretold as one that will end their seemingly endless war with those that lie in the Dark Lands, the place where bad people go upon their death. Before she can completely fathom the weight of what shes just been told Bonnie is introduced to an assortment of people from her old world, a former schoolmate to an old neighbor with Finches.
Its not until she meets her husband’s cousin that she is jolted by the fact that her deceased husband must be around somewhere and then wonders where her mom could be as well. Bonnie learns that where they now reside is ten times larger than Earth and that her father has been searching in vain for years, looking for her mom. While trying to soothe Bonnie her father lets her know that all of their old pets are there and are good at tracking loved ones down, none hold a bigger place in her heart than Roy-Boy as shown through a brief flashback of her as a child embracing him as a pup.
In perhaps one of the most revealing moments of this issue Bonnie is presented with her weapon, a gleaming short sword that has been hidden for years in anticipation of her arrival. Witnessing Bonnie’s disbelief her father quickly tells her that the old world was just a dry run for this one and if you were good and kind to others there then you will be very strong here.
Later that evening during a jubilee held in her honor Bonnie reveals that after mourning her husband for fourteen years she simply cannot undertake another task before searching for him. Its decided that she will take a month to search for him before undertaking the task that is seemingly predestined for her. Bonnie’s father offers to take her to someone that can help them in their search, he calls her the queen but Bonnie knows her as her former best friend. Unfortunately for Bonnie this is not the same friend that she knew in the old world, now isolated and twisted by power and grief she cares little of her old self.
The issue closes out giving us a dire first impression of the villains residing in the Dark Lands. One in particular has a long history with Bonnie, her old cat is holding a grudge for having its testicles removed! The lands are dark indeed and give but a hint of the looming dark tide that Bonnie seems destined to stymie. Only two issues into the world of Reborn and already its potential discoveries and clashes tug at my psyche the way few stories have, do yourself a favor and dare to be reborn.