Star Wars: Lando #2 (of 5)
Writer: Charles Soule
Artist: Alex Maleev
Colorist: Paul Mounts
Cover Artist: Alex Maleev
Letterer: Joe Caramagna
Lando #2 is living up to it’s name as a thrilling heist story. With his crew of thieves, Lando steals the Emperor’s ship as he evades the Imperials and scours it for valuables. But even if Lando can escape the Imp’s and their Imperial fleets, he may be in for a surprise when he comes up against the Emperor’s chosen troubleshooter.
The action kicks off in space as no less than three Star Destroyers try to capture Lando and the Imperialis. One of the things I really like about this series so far is the characterizations. When confronted by three Star Destroyers, Lando doesn’t freak out. Instead, he sees this as a great sign. Whatever it is he stole must be extremely valuable for them to send three ships. That kind of crazy thinking really adds some personality to Lando and it’s just the right touch. Furthermore, you’ve got the thieves on the ship who are extremely worried, so much so that they threaten Lando. However the scoundrel is able to use his charm to cool the situation. It all falls into place and makes the whole thing a very fun story.
Adding some mystery to the issue, there’s a blue armored bounty hunter named Chanath Cha. With jet boots and a t-visored helmet that looks like what the ancient Mandalorians wore, he’s visually striking. He also seems to be very competent as he single handedly takes out some criminal thugs. Yet this character drops everything when the Emperor calls him. The implication is that this isn’t the first time the Emperor’s called him. While we’ll definitely be seeing more of him in future issues, I’m hoping we might learn a little more about his backstory. Is he a bounty hunter? A mercenary? An Imperial agent? One of the Emperor’s Hands? Time will tell.
The best part of the issue comes at the end, and I’ll not spoil the surprise as Lando and his crew discover the treasures on board Palpatine’s ship. Yet the story wouldn’t be complete without the artwork, and in this case, Alex Maleev and Paul Mounts put some nice visuals on the page. There’s a distinct use of colors to signify each local. For instance, the interior of the Imperialis is red while the interior of the Star Destroyers are done in olive and blue lighting. When the action shifts to Amethia Prime, there’s an interesting mix of warm sunset colors ranging from purpose to burnt orange. Then, toward the end, there’s a change up as Lando and crew head deeper inside the Imperialis where there is brighter lighting. The shifting palette makes it easier to identify where each panel is taking place. However, there is a lot of space scenes and most of the issue is kind of darkly lit. Still, there’s also a lot of detail which goes a long way in keeping the art interesting. You can tell Alex spent a lot of time with the Star Destroyers to make them look like Star Destroyers. The subtle details on the hulls makes them look just like the intricate ships from the movies with their infinite number of protrusions and surfaces structures.
With a great ending, fun characters and good action, Lando #2 is a solid issue. The storytelling is in high gear and the visuals do a great job of pulling it all together. I give Lando #2 a five out of five metal bikinis and look forward to the next issue.