There are a couple things happening here: it's not all about Rubble, the plot twists are better, and I was reminded that favorite characters can come back. Yaaaas. Barricade. Mmm.
He doesn't show up in this, but it didn't matter. The possibility of seeing him again is all I need, thank you very much.
The art gets better, and Ruckley seems to be saying 'I was just setting everything up in issue one and two.' I think this might be a bad idea for comics though; even setup needs to fascinate me to buy issue #2, unless I really, really want this series not to suck. Ahem, yes, like with this. I'm glad I stuck it out, but if I hated issue one? Well, I'd have never moved onto issue two. Ruckley, I suspect, has more wiggle room in a fantasy novel, especially as an established writer. First of all, convention can call for slower writing - he does epic fantasy, so many of those books are humungous - and he isn't selling it chapter by chapter. If he were, I think he'd find the need to hook people immediately.
I'm now seeing that he can write well, even if he's no James Roberts, aka the man I judge all writing by. (I imagine he'd be shocked, maybe even embraced if he knew this, but, yeah, it's true.) So I'm hoping this continues to be amazing.