After nearly being beaten to death, Rorschach starts looking for answers.
Before Watchmen: Rorschach #2
Visiting the usual diner he frequents, Walter Kovacs is in a bad way. However, instead of accepting the kindness of Nancy, who waits on him every day, Kovacs bolts and begins his mission to find Rawhead, the pusher and kingpin at fault for beating Rorschach. After spending three days in a hospital emergency room for his injuries, Rorschach hits the streets and finds a pimp who’s threatening one of his girls for stealing. He starts to torture the man to find Rawhead, but some of the criminal’s men are bearing down on their location.
Without a doubt, the raw grit of this series has been what’s made this story so interesting. Brian Azzarello crafts a pretty good street-level crime story here. While I still have a little bit of a problem with the narration, it’s less noticeable in this issue. What does shine in this is the awkwardness of Walter Kovacs. We could pretty much figure that Rorschach would do some cool and even badass things, but Azzarello really does a great job making Kovacs a weirdo who’s positively determined and focused. He’s so focused on who he is and what he does, that he isn’t able to handle the acts of kindness from the waitress at his diner. He does all he can to shun her when she’s not trying to have sex with him or even coming on all that strong. More than anything, she’s curious about him, and legitimately cares about him. In Kovacs world, however, she’s not much more than a harlot, or worse. These moments between Kovacs and Nancy are legitimately well crafted and a real joy to see in such a dark book.
Contributing to the darkness is Lee Bermejo’s art. The visuals are absolutely stunning. It’s the perfect example of how something so violent, mean, and gritty can be stunning when done right. The use of shading and the overall texture and composition gives this book a near cinematic feel. It’s almost like the book was constructed by using frames from a Rorschach movie.
All in all, Azzarello and Bermejo go for the jugular in this series. Despite all we’ve seen in previous stories, this is by far the most mature and adult of the Before Watchmen books. Through that, the series can certainly be considered a success.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Beautifully illustrated by Bermejo and Azzarello’s gritty plot with touches of great subplot between Nancy and Kovacs makes this a pretty darn good read.||The narration still feels a little off but not as noticeable.|