Writer: Joe Hill
Artist: Stuart Immonen
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Letterer: Deron Bennett
Cover Artist: Jeremy Wilson
Editors: Mark Doyle, Amedeo Turturro
Publisher: DC Comics
The mystery of the Derelth continues to sink deeper in Plunge #2 as the Carpenter Salvage crew attempts to make sense of Moriah’s horrific discovery. After chalking up her encounter as pure nonsense, the team takes a page from Scooby Doo and splits up to investigate further. Whereas the first issue sets up a lot of background information and character introductions, Plunge #2 wastes no time in exploring new pieces of the puzzle while building likable characters whom we’re sure to miss once they’ve been consumed by whatever deep sea leviathan is lurking in the waters.
There’s quite a few characters in Plunge, and by splitting the Carpenter Salvage crew up into different groups — each tasked with a different goal — Hill is able to better develop both the characters and the unfolding mystery. A handful of these characters also provide some great levity with genuinely hilarious quips, making the glimpses of sinister danger that we see all the more nerve-wracking. The characters remain largely unaware of the nefarious things happening just out of eye-sight. Immonen’s art encapsulates the dread and mystery of the island with a few memorable horror panels and a couple thalassophobia-inducing underwater set pieces, all coalescing into an island that feels like it’s hiding an ancient secret.
The coloring in this issue by Dave Stewart features a lot of dark blues that fit well with the tone of the story but can sometimes become overbearing. However, it juxtaposes well with some of the more nastier island inhabitants, and, in those instances, it really helps pick the story back up visually. Letters by Deron Bennett are consistent and don’t distract from the dialogue, but there’s a clever use of it towards the end that helps capture depth and distance.
With four issues left and an island full of questions that need answers, Hill continues to move the story along at a brisk and captivating pace. There’s lots of interesting threads pulling this story together, and readers will want to stick around to find out what the Carpenter Salvage crew pulls out of the water next issue.