Fast forward to the present day and the control the witches have over the town is being threatened in REDLANDS #2 from Image Comics. Author Jordie Bellaire is crafting a hell of a tale that is one part supernatural thriller and one part police procedural. Alice, Bridget, and Ro have settled in nicely to their new roles as detectives in the town on Redlands, FL. Their hold over the town has been tight since the late 70’s when they first arrived and now someone who knows their secret has plans to draw the entire countries attention to their small corner of the world. With ritualistic murders and cryptic calling cards left at the scenes this new killer seeks to expose the sisters for what they are, all while they themselves are carrying out their own dark arts under the cover of night.
Two issues into REDLANDS and you can already tell it is something special. Issue #1 opened with a bang and then a 30 year time jump opens issue #2 with a completely different tone yet still maintaining the unsettling nature of witchcraft and the dark arts. I also love how Jordie Bellaire spends the majority of this issue painting the sisters are empathetic protagonists only to subvert that notion with the closing scenes as they make their own gruesome sacrifice. What readers are left with is a book whose characters operate completely in the gray, which for me makes it a far more compelling read. There is so much to unpack here and so much to look forward to in the months to come. The characters are strong and fun to read even if you are not necessarily rooting for them and the larger plot at play is a page turner that will definitely bring readers back again and again.
Wrapping up the stellar package is Vanesa Del Rey on art. Her style is just sketchy enough to have that slightly hazard look to it while still rendering beautiful characters and landscapes. Excellent use of colors and a heavy dose of black round out a truly stellar art package. REDLANDS #2 is absolutely fantastic and I have no doubt this is going to be the Image book people will be talking about for months to come. Get in on this one early and make sure you grab the first two issues while you can, Bellaire and Del Rey have a hit on their hands.