The third issue of Dark Horse’s Tomb Raider packs the most amount of action seen so far from this series. Lara and Reyes are in the thick of it and must outwit and outrun a group of men who want them dead. The question is, can they escape in time to rescue their friend from danger?
Note: Spoilers below so beware.
The last issue ended with a group of Solarii worshipers threatening to kill Reyes’ daughter if Lara didn’t hand over an artifact that they want. The problem is that Lara has no idea that she has this relic, let alone where it could be. The Solarii don’t care about this little detail and continue to countdown to when they will shoot the girl. Lucky for Lara and her friends that a mystery ally just so happened to be in the restaurant. This unknown person (who seems familiar to Lara) kills enough of the enemy to allow Lara, Reyes and her daughter to flee.
What follows is a huge chase sequence across Dublin, Ireland with Lara trying her best to stay ahead of her pursuers. While the chase was elaborate and well choreographed, with a lot of twists and turns and false hope moments, it suffered due to the art. As I’ve said before, Nicolas Daniel Selma is a good artist but he has a problem with making characters look fluid during action scenes. In this action heavy issue the art ruined the experience a bit. Granted that the story telling was fine and I was able to follow everything but the stiff looking characters made what should have been an intense chase feel tepid at best.
The issue also had more flashbacks than usual which I really enjoyed. Again, writer Gail Simone shows how well she understands the characters we first met in the game. With that said, she is also giving them more depth development but is still keeping their cores intact. Seeing flashbacks of events that happened ten years ago, specifically how Roth met Reyes, gave me more insight into who they were and in turn made made me care even more about them.
I also like how each issue has events that happen on the Endurance just before the fateful crash landing on Yamatai. There’s even a scene pulled right from the video game in this issue where we see the Endurance crack in half and Lara making that big leap across the gap of it.
During the chase, Lara ponders on how she is barely out of her teens and she’s already had to suffer so much. Despite everything that she’s been through, she is still scared and this is something that she herself finds odd. There is a scene in this book where Reyes tells Lara to stay away from her and her daughter because everyone that gets close to her dies. This hurts Lara. Although Reyes doesn’t notice this, her daughter does and she makes Reyes reunite with Lara and apologize for being “mean.” These two women don’t exactly see eye to eye so perhaps now they will learn to get along with each other; Reyes more than Lara.
Near the end of the issue, Lara learns that her friend Sam, who was originally going to be sacrificed to the sun Queen Himiko on Yamatai, has been kidnapped by the Solarii and is being returned to that dreadful island. Lara tells Reyes that they have to go back to that Hell and rescue their friend from a certain doom. Sam was kidnapped by two of those monster women from the last issue so these are two foes that Lara will have to face in order to save her.
A return to Yamatai wasn’t something I was expecting but at the same time, I am curious to see how the island has changed after the events of the game. Queen Mimiko has been vanquished so what other powers could still be at work on the island? What do the Solarii want with the artifacts and Sam? One Solarii said that they want to bring the world “to Hell.” Do they plan to destroy the world somehow? I guess we’ll just have to be patient and find out more next month.