The second installment of Love and Capes features a young and adorable Crusader on the cover. Even if I didn’t already like the series, that image along would make me pick it up. Creator Thom Zahler’s art style may be the friendliest I’ve ever seen. It invites you to pick up the comic and then feeds you cookies while you flip through the pages… I might have taken that analogy too far.
Mark and Abby are almost ready to move into their apartment building. It’s one of the most stressful life changes there is, but they have to balance it with Crusader business and having all of their in-laws in town for dinner and a tour of the building. It’s enough to make even a superhero crack. Fortunately, they’re plucky people. There’s one other complication. Mark is hit by a chronoton blast and becomes chronologically unstable. He turns into a seven-year-old – just in time for dinner. They decide it might be time to let Abby’s parents on Mark’s secret.
The story is lighthearted and endearing without being sappy. I love that. These characters feel like people you could hang out with, and you can actually relate to the superhero members of the Liberty League. They don’t become different people when they put on the capes and tights. They don’t have psychological issues. They are humans with superpowers, emphasis on the human part. If that weren’t the case, Mark and Abby’s relationship wouldn’t be believable.
We’re getting to know more about the other members of the Liberty League too. Darkblade has insecurities about his grim visage, and Amazonia talks with Abby about doing small things to make an effort – like wearing a jersey to basketball game to make Darkblade happy. I look forward to learning more tidbits and watching the overall story progress.
One more thing I like: Zahler throws in references that speak to the geeks in all of us. These easter eggs make me feel more included in the story, as if they were put there just for me. For example, take a second look at the characters in the background. You never know who you’ll see.