Writer: Curt Pires
Artist: Jason Copland
Publisher: Dark Horse
We were introduced to the world of literal manufactured pop stars in the last issue of Pop. Elle was one of the lucky ones to escape before she was forced into the limelight for our enjoyment and judgment. While running away from an incubated life she was used to she met a man named Coop. Despite problems he was dealing with his own life, he couldn’t leave her to fend for herself. So he decided to help her out. While she was hiding others were searching for her. Those in charge of her creation were concerned with locating her at all costs. The first issue set the tone for for those to follow. Now we find ourselves faced with two big questions. First, how did she escape the confines of her incubator? Second, why are her creators so adamant about finding her?
Curt Pires continues to hold our attention as he begins to answer these questions and create new ones. His story line is fodder for Illuminati conspiracy theorists. It continues to touch on things they suspect really are happening in the entertainment industry today. This is certainly an intriguing take on those theories if that is Pires intentions. I’m just waiting for him to reveal that the people after Elle are in fact reptilians from another planet using celebrities to brainwash everyone; turn us into mindless zombies so we won’t fight back when they take over the world. It’s a comic, so anything is possible. I’m sure he has other plans for his story of Elle and Coop that will be just as interesting. That being said I wish there was more substance to their story in this issue.
The lack of substance was made up for in humor. Pires pokes fun at things like society’s strange obsession with cat videos on YouTube and Starbucks. It’s irrelevant to the actual story, but good for a laugh to break up the seriousness of this issue. Pires even makes references to drug use that’s often associated with Hollywood. You’ll also find that the book is filled with references to real people in the industry whether it be by name, personality, or appearance in the artwork. There’s one character that I can’t help but wonder if Jason Copland fashioned after Joey Ramone? The face and hair are very reminiscent of him. There are a couple things Copland has included in the art that I find myself questioning. One of them is a random panel of people having sex in an office. The other is what appears to be a random wheat field in the middle of California. Every story needs the suspense of being chased through a field though, right?
My favorite thing about Pop is turning out to be the pop culture references thrown into the story. I’ve caught many of them, but I’m sure I’m missing a few. Pop culture and the mimicking and heightening of conspiracy theories may not appeal to everyone. Despite those aspects, Pires has still written a great story about a woman escaping a life of prying eyes and constant pressure. Something no one should be subjected to against their own free will. But I must say, I was caught off guard by that panel featuring a couple having sex. While I have no problems with that in a comic book, it did feel out of place and unnecessary in this particular book.
“POP #2” earns 8/10