A few days ago Comixology released the first volume of the Tomb Raider Omnibus. This is a collection of issues 1 through 18 of the Dark Horse comics that ran from 2014. The comic itself was based on the 2013 Tomb Raider game by Crystal Dynamics – which has since seen two sequels. This comic series deals with Lara Croft’s journey to the island of Yamatai, not unlike last year’s movie starring Alicia Vikander.
That said this comic might the least good of all three version of the same story. The story jumps around quite a lot, as you would expect from a comic book that was published in serial form. It is a common flaw with comics. If you can look past that it is a good adventure with a decent amount of storytelling and lots of gratuitous violence.
A slow start for Tomb Raider
This Tomb Raider comic evolves into a neat adventure, near the end it even becomes gripping. That said the comic cannot escape it’s slow start. The first chapter is quite boring, with side characters far more interesting than Lara. I understand the comic writers wanted to a prologue that would set the stage, but sadly it takes too long.
That chapter is quickly followed by more that puts the story into overdrive. The consequences of her visit to Yamatai are quite dear. Many of her friends are murdered in near non-stop action. That partly retracts from the story. It almost becomes a running gag as anybody she knows ends up dead a few pages afterwards.
While this comic is not bad it does suffer from wanting to do too much. It wants to portray Lara’s origin story, but Lara already seems far too capable. It wants to create a sense of mystique around her relationship with her father, but every time that happens it is resolved within a few pages.
Not your 90s Lara
Some fans of Tomb Raider may find it hard to reconcile this Lara Croft with the ones from 90s. Back then she was on plenty of magazine covers as the young woman who would kick-ass and shoot guns. All the while being sexy about with an impossible figure and wearing sexy outfits. Lara Croft was a sex symbol for many young men. That Lara is now gone, and while there are a few tongue-in-cheek references I am glad the old Lara is gone.
This new Lara that we have also seen in the three action-adventure games and the movie starring Alicia Vikander is much more fun and relatable.