Review: Jem and the Holograms Infinite #2

As a relatively new fan of Jem and the Holograms, I’ll admit that I was a bit skeptical of the idea behind the Infinite storyline. A world where holograms had fallen into the wrong hands and created a dystopian society of systematic oppression, which only Jem and the Holograms could right set off alarm bells for “jumping the shark.”

I’m happy to say I was totally wrong and have fallen in love with everything about Infinite. Stacy Lee and Jen Hickman’s art, in combination with Sarah Stern’s spectacular coloring, creates a stunning and unique world that really sets Infinite apart from other comics and pulls the reader in. The dialogue is clever, funny and fast-paced, and each character (both in the Holograms and the Misfits) has their own distinct voice, matched by unique facial expressions rendered by Hickman and Lee. The comic has energy. A lot of it. A lot is going on, but nothing is ever cluttered or nonsensical and the reader is always fully engaged with the plot, thanks to the witty dialogue, as well as the incredible and expressive art.

Honestly, I cannot say enough about the art and coloring in this comic. It’s fun, engaging, and is phenomenal at conveying the characters’ energy and emotions, and to top it all off it’s incredibly body-positive. The girls aren’t perfectly proportioned Barbie dolls in physically impossible poses and skin-tight vinyl. They look like real women. In fact, everything about this comic is clearly geared toward women.

I’m not saying that men won’t enjoy it, a vast majority absolutely will. Seriously, guys, do not let this turn you off or you’re missing out. Infinite is funny, fast-paced, and visually stunning, certainly anyone can enjoy it. But the comic isn’t made for men. And given that almost every other comic book on the shelf is, this is yet another thing that makes Infinite stand out from the crowd.

The only critique I have is that this comic could have a lot of appeal to someone who isn’t that familiar with Jem or comics in general, but it doesn’t maximize it. They talk about things that happened in the last run like the death of the Hologram’s father, and Silica (a rogue AI), when they could easily show a few panels of flashback to help catch new readers up to speed. And the release structure is confusing to readers not overly familiar with comics. This comic is technically the second issue of Jem and the Holograms: Infinite, but it is the third part of the Infinite series. The second part of Infinite was “Jem and the Holograms: The Misfits Issue 1.” The issue is clearly labeled “Infinite: Part 3” on the cover, but if you’re looking for part two, you’ll need the first issue of “The Misfits.”

This particular issue gives us some good insight into the exact forces driving JemCorp and the city built on holograms. Most importantly, however, the comic does a good job keeping the question of Jerrica revealing her secret identity and her use of Synergy at the forefront of the readers’ minds, even though we’re in another dimension. If anything, each new fact she learns about this dystopia built on Synergy’s power helps to inform the decision about whether or not to come clean to the public back in her native world. In this way the writers have made this extra-dimensional dystopian adventure not only relevant, but absolutely integral to Jerrica’s character development. Kelly Thompson has laid the foundation for an absolutely phenomenal story about Jerrica learning what it means to be a leader and a heroine, and to place those lessons in the context of her making a huge decision about who she is, and I, for one, can’t wait to see more.

Art: 5 Stars
Cover: 5 Stars
Dialogue: 5 Stars
Plot/Story: 5 Stars

Rating: 5 out of 5

Written by Kelly Thompson
Art by Jen Hickman
Publisher IDW

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