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Mark Millar and Wilfredo Torres finally bring home the prequel event of the year. A small pool, but big enough for at least this series to make it through. Jupiter’s Circle #6 is the final issue of the first volume, bringing to a close the two-parter spotlight on the character known as Skyfox. One of my most anticipated issues, without a doubt, and something that I was really excited to dig into. Circle has been a highlight of Millarworld so far, so let’s see if it stuck it’s landing.
One of my biggest concerns with the previous issue centered around how fragmented it seemed. You couldn’t really get into Skyfox as a character because of the framing device – not in the same way that you could with Blue Bolt or even The Flare. This latest installment makes better strides with getting the reader into the world of George Hutchence. No longer larger than life, Millar and Wilfredo are able to put together small moments that really show how vulnerable he can be.
One of the big strengths is that, similarly to Blue Bolt’s story, we see how the rest of the characters figure into the plot of this segment. Utopian and Brain-Wave in particular get in on the action and the interplay between all three of them not only sheds new light with regards to where they stood in Legacy, but also captures intrigue for the second volume. There’s so much to mine in terms of content moving forward, for all of Brain-Wave’s personal ires, Utopian’s doubts, and Skyfox’s aimless and purposeless future.
The biggest boon for this issue would have to be the long awaited return of series starter Wilfredo Torres on art duties. Of course this is not at all a dig at the wonderful fill-in artist Davide Gianfelice, who did a commendable job carrying the torch, but there’s a great sense of closure with Torres doing the final issue of this volume. Gianfelice was superb, but one striking aspect of Torres’ work on this series is his proficiency in the smaller details.
The emotional weights that this issue finds itself saddled with would not be as impactful or as interesting if not for Torres’ engaging expression work. A picture is worth a million words, and not to knock some of Millar’s dialogue, but he hit the jackpot with Torres – no question. This is, in fact, so effective, that it even seals off the final pages. Jupiter’s Circle #6 might not be a blockbuster extravaganza – but it’s not meant to be. Sure, it might have been a slow two-parter, but Torres’ work still gives off a sense of closure, with more to come.
Overall, is this the end result that I expected from this leg of the series? No, not really. Yet, it works as a midway point, which is what matters most of all. There’s still a bigger picture being painted here, and the Skyfox two-parter shakes things up. If there is a denouement to be found then I think we can be fairly certain that it starts here, a trait that makes the second half all the more enticing. Jupiter’s Circle Volume 2 #1 comes out in November, which is a godsend – because this is one series that needs that momentum.