I thoroughly enjoyed IDW’s first Infestation event, which saw a zombie plague ravish the worlds of the Transformers, G.I. Joe, Ghost Busters and Star Trek. It was brought to us by fan-favorites Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, and if anything, was at least a lot of fun.
Now, IDW attempts to do the same with Infestation 2, this time by Duane Swierczynski, and cross-overs with Transformers, G.I. Joe, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, 30 Days of Night and Dungeons and Dragons. From the cover to the opening four pages, the issue is a sure hit; however, everything after falls flat for me. Not only is there a noticeable difference in the art, as the “prologue” was very nicely rendered by Valerio Schiti, but the story seemed to be just drawn out filler – as the licensed characters we all want to see can’t make appearances due to their respective parent company’s restraints. In regards to the remaining pages by artist David Messina and Co., the art seemed lacking compared to what I remember with the first inaugural issue of Infestation. Could be Messina just draws zombies better, but the art overall seemed rather bland and less detailed.
This time instead of Zombies threatening the IDW Omni-verse, it’s the Elder gods of Lovecraftian fame, which curiously enough DnA used in their stellar hit The Thanos Imperative. Not to say DnA are the first to use them either, of course. Swierczynski offers up that the Elder gods have escaped their prison, due in part to Lovecraft himself, as their power has been amplified due to humanity’s believe and fixation upon them. However, the kicker, and how all the IDW’s titles are bound together, it that the Elder gods are released with the use of Articalla, a magic-based weapon in the IDW Universe, which is actually an Elder God magic. From there, members of IDW’s core team, agents of the CVO (Covet Vampiric Operations), defend against various — again rather bland-looking — Lovecraftian monsters, with a particularly not well-done last page leading us into the other books for Infestation 2.
Overall, the concept sounds like a heck of a lot of fun, and I’m curious how the licensed characters interact with the Lovecraftian threat; however, this issue needed a bit more to sell me on Infestation 2, especially at a $3.99 price tag.