The Weapon #2
Spoilers continue, but it's from 2007 - if you haven't read it by now...
Jumping into The Weapon #2, Tommy Zhou, aka The Weapon, and Megan Dean-Hughes have hopped a plane to get to a temple built by the Shan-Tao order, so they can find their way to the scroll that details mastery over chi. Along the way, we are treated to a little more history on how the order of Shan-Tao are tied to the founder of Buddhism, and possibly the Boxer Rebellion, and how the Shan-Tao have figured benignly into the history of Hawaii. Decent storytelling, these bits.
They get to the temple, and find a Chinese inscription that runs around the inner perimeter of the temple.While Megan takes pictures, The Weapon has to fend off the rest of the tourists - Forest Demons in disguise, who were already there waiting for him, somehow one step ahead.
A shining moment of disappointment: there's a giant gong. Sure enough, just like in Indiana Jones, and at least one martial arts movie (a Jackie Chan, I think) the gong goes rolling, and Tommy & Megan run behind it to the door, bullets pinging off it the entire way.
They run to the beach, hop a convenient motorboat, get chased by a Forest Demon controlled police chopper, and cars on a road running parallel to the waterway, and manage to get away. They translate the inscription, follow the directions that lead them to sneak into a government controlled observatory, and they pull another Indiana Jones move, using a moonbeam, reflecting off of a solid light replica of Tommy's grandfather's sword, to point the way to their destination. Just then, Tommy discovers that an entire group of Forest Demons have entered the observatory, and have a knife to Megan's throat. End of issue 2.
It's the fact that I can summarize the entire issue in four measly paragraphs that gets me - it's just paced very quickly. I don't suppose that's a bad thing, but as comics got to be $2.99 cover price or higher, I started wanting my comic reads to last a little longer. When I can blow through an issue in five minutes or less, and a trade paperback in twenty, I feel like I've wasted my money, no matter how good the story was. And with The Weapon, the story is only average. It's a new face on a story I've read or watched a few dozen times.
For the rating, I'd put this one square in the middle again, at 2.5 stars, but I'm deducting a half-star each for stealing the two Indiana Jones moments. However, I'll give back a half-star, because I still want to read issue #3. So issue #2 rating: two stars.