Naomi returns for a brand new limited series, which shows how one teenager's life can be turned upside down in unexpected ways. The full creative team of Naomi returns for this second arc, bringing back writers Brian Michael Bendis and David F. Walker and artist Jamal Campbell for a second run at the high-profile teen hero. A lot has changed since Naomi's first arc, which saw the teen discover her true heritage as a resident from an alternate Earth and then fight off an invasion from Zumbado, the ruler of the aforementioned alternate Earth. Naomi has received mentorship from the Justice League and joined Young Justice, but her whirlwind admittance into the superhero ranks has left her with a lot of unresolved feelings about her heritage and her family's deception.
Those unresolved feelings form the central conflict of Naomi: Season Two #1, with Naomi and her adoptive father Greg clashing over Naomi's use of her powers. Greg's personality has shifted significantly from the first series, as he's much more standoffish about his daughter's powers... despite the fact that he was one of the only people who knew that she had them to begin with. Part of this is his overprotective side showing, but some of it seems to be him coming to terms that the quiet life he pictured for himself and his daughter is over.
With Naomi and her father's relationship fracturing, Naomi looks to Dee, the Thanagarian warrior and former sworn enemy of her father, for support and guidance. Dee is much more accepting of Naomi's powers, but even he is urging caution and understanding. Dee's complicated mentorship of Naomi and his relationship with Greg form the other half of the conflict in this issue, which plays out in the final pages of the book. Of course, Zumbado and Naomi's original "home" hang over the comic as well, providing Naomi with even more pressure in her life.
Honestly, Naomi: Season Two feels a lot like the original Naomi series, which is a very good thing. Jamal Campbell's artwork remains absolutely fantastic, with vibrant colors that help his comic stand up from the typical DC fare. The comic also has a more subdued feel than the typical DC superhero comic, with more focus on family dynamics and internal conflict than the external threats brought about by supervillains or disasters. Port Oswego remains a sleepy little town in the DC Universe, even if its residents can't stop talking about their new superhero resident.
Although Bendis's run with DC has largely been hit or miss, Naomi remains some of his strongest work. There's an authenticity in Naomi that is often missing from his other comics. I'm not sure if that's because co-writer David F. Walker helps to curb some of Bendis's infamous dialogue patterns, or if it's because Naomi fits into Bendis's teen hero wheelhouse a bit more, but this comic just has a different vibe. That's a good thing, as there's an air of welcomeness to Naomi as if readers are being invited to join Naomi as she keeps digging into her past and her future.
While Naomi has made a handful of high profile appearances in other DC comics, her solo title requires little pre-reading to jump into. You can enjoy her first arc or start with this issue. You'll be getting the same quality of comic either way, with a solid blend of superheroics and family angst that make for a very compelling DC Comics story.
Published by DC Comics
On March 8, 2022
Written by Brian Michael Bendis and David F. Walker
Art by Jamal Campbell
Letters by Wes Abbott
Cover by Jamal Campbell