Mark Millar hits the ground running in his new volume of Kick-Ass as the young hero and his gang of awkward vigilantes attempt to break Hit-Girl out of her cell.
Joined again by the talented John Romita Jr., Millar taps the brakes on the hyper-violence in favor of smaller humorous character moments between Kick-Ass and his friends that prove to be more entertaining than over-the-top violence.
Despite the plan to bust Hit-Girl out of a maximum security facility being written by the intelligent and deadly child herself, the bust goes hardly as planned and ends with a laugh or two that swings the title back into “recap” mode. Millar’s concise recounting of the history of Kick-Ass is cleverly written and highlights only the most vital facts needed to jump right into the story.
Once the history of the series is introduced, Millar takes his titular character on an emotional rollercoaster full of light-hearted highs and sulking lows. Perhaps the most fun moment of the entire issue shows Kick-Ass brooding over the graves of his parents, only to purposely crash to his knees in an attempt to channel the anger and power of Bruce Wayne into his upcoming battle against evil. Instances like these that verge into the territory of melodrama fill this new volume of Kick-Ass with humor without ever feeling forced.
Most of this first issue of Volume #3 focuses on conversation pieces between Kick-Ass and a variety of his misfit friends, which sadly doesn’t give artist John Romita Jr. much room to stretch his artistic arms. That is not to say that his art fails to impress, however, as the aforementioned “Bruce Wayne” sequence channels the saddest Batman art and turns it into a golden comedic sequence. Now that Millar has reintroduced his cast and story, Romita will surely get the chance to flex his talents in the most violent way possible.
With the beginning of this new volume, Mark Millar should be commended for not penning an overwhelming history of his series, nor leaving new readers in the dust. Despite the fact that the over-the-top violence many readers have come to love is far from present in this first issue, this reintroduction to Kick-Ass is packed with enough comedic moments to be well worth the cover price.
Though little is left to the imagination as to the plight of Kick-Ass himself, how he escapes his deadly predicament and eventually rescues Hit-Girl will leave everyone wanting more.
Mark Millar (W), John Romita Jr (A) • Marvel Comics/Icon, $2.99, June 5, 2013.