I’ve been avoiding writing this review, but not because the comic isn’t good. It is good. What’s better is that it is written by one of my favorite authors, Gail Simone. But I feel a little lost. While I’ve seen the Lara Croft movies, I’ve never played the games. At this point, I’m curious to know if the comic picks up where perhaps the last game left off, or maybe it’s based off of the last game? I’m curious because I know nothing about the legendary island of Yamatai, nor do I know Roth, nor Sam, nor Jonah, etc, etc, etc. With that said, I feel like I’ve been plopped into the middle of a plot I should know something about.

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Or, it could be that Simone simply starts the story here, and that it will all begin to make sense as the series progresses. At least that’s what I’m hoping for.

Beyond the fact that I felt lost in the beginning, the story keeps you turning the page. It begins with Lara’s nightmare of Roth and crew (dead, by the way), attempting to keep her on the island of Yamatai. From there we meet Sam (maybe short for Samantha), Lara’s roommate, who likewise awakes from an apparent nightmare–we assume about Yamatai– but will not admit to it.  Things only escalate from there when Lara gets a call from another crew member, Jonah, who accompanied the team to the island of Yamatai as well — are you seeing a pattern here? His message, however, is quite cryptic, and immediately sends Lara off in search of him. She finds him, but things only go down hill from there, and Lara is left wondering what the hell is going on and what exactly happened to them on the island of Yamatai.

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As always, I thoroughly enjoyed the writing of Simone. Simple lines, as seen above, like “OH. BUGGER.” are classic Simone. Croft, like Red Sonja, is imbued with a sense of humor even in the most desperate of times. She is also written as a feminist character: one who can do for herself as well as others.

The art work by Nicolas Daniel Selma with inks by Juan Gedeon and colors by Michael Atiyeh doesn’t scream, shout, or even loudly say “LOOK AT ME.” That’s not to say it’s not good. I’m particularly fond of the colors. One desert/sky scene reminds me of hikes I use to take in Australia, it’s so life-like. The layouts are simple but effective with only one splash page as page one of the comic. Something that I did notice about this comic is the gutter spacing. I’ve not seen spacing this wide between panels in a long time. It certainly helps slow the overall experience down. Something about wider gutters makes you linger longer on the page and take it in more. I think this helps absorb the complexity of the story in the beginning as well.

Tomb Raider is a solid read. The writing of Gail Simone continues to be stellar, and I feel like the initial complexity will be resolved throughout the series. The simple artwork fits the story and it will be interesting to see if the gutter spacing continues to be as large as it is in this issue.

Tomb Raider can be purchased at your Local Comic Shop or Clem’s Comics & Games website.

Overall Score
88 %

Gail Simone brings her sense of humor to the character of Lara Croft in this months Tomb Raider. A complex story that will take months to work through.

Story/Plot 90%
Art 80%
Layout/Gutters 95%
Color 90 %

About The Author

My name is Dianna, and I hail from the land of the lakes, aka Michigan. My full time job has me running a writing center, teaching writing classes (hopefully soon teaching a comics course), and doing all sorts of techy things, since that’s what I did in a previous life.

At this point in my life, comics are both my passion and my research. I am lucky in that I get to combine my passion into my everyday work. But here at Destroy the Cyborg I get to have fun and chat about what I'm reading. Feel free to chime in on my post, even if it's to tell my how dead wrong I got something.

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