‘Eight Billion Genies #2:’ Comic Book Review

Ryan Browne and Charles Soule have returned for the second issue of their latest collaboration, Eight Billion Genies. In what feels like a spiritual successor to their previous hit, Curse Words, this series takes all of the beloved weirdness of their work together and ups the intensity, something that has to be seen to be believed.

In the first issue, we got to see the consequences of a world phenomenon where genies showed up, out of nowhere, to grant one wish to every single person in the world, regardless of age, region, or status. This, predictably, went sideways immediately, as people wished for, were are granted, anything they wanted. Within the first eight seconds, the planet basically exploded in magical nonsense, with the exception of a bar in Michigan, where the story is set. There, the owner of the establishment used his wish to ensure that no wishes could affect his bar, making it a safe haven for those inside.

For the second issue, we begin to understand a bit more about what's happening, as the first eight minutes pass, and the world continues its nosedive into chaos. With the genies inside that are attached to the patrons of the bar that have yet to use their wish, we get some information about how it all works, though not really why. As we continue to watch the world descend into madness, it will surely all come to light soon.

Ryan Browne is a madman, and I mean that as the highest compliment that can be given. His work has always been a bit wild, and this is no exception. From the concept to the way he uses humor in every way possible, from story gags, to visual jokes, to the lettering itself, Browne is a wholly unique artist that is really pushing the way comics get made.

Add Charles Soule to that mix, and it's mayhem in every direction. They chemistry between the two creators is incredible, and it's obvious that they love working together to make their comics. It doesn't hurt that the stories are engaging, fun, and totally unlike anything else, or that the issue is gorgeous. It's wonderful to see what creators like Browne and Soule can come up with when given the ability to create without restrictions, because it's always brilliant.

This series is so good that it's almost a shame that there are only eight issues. It makes sense conceptually, but I already love this book so much that I don't want to believe that it's already ended its first quarter. Even though it's only a short run, this is already shaping up to be a special series that promises to deliver on its wild concept.

Creative Team: Charles Soule (writer and co-creator), Ryan Browne (artist and co-creator)
Publisher: Image Comics
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