|LANDO No. 3, October 2015|
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given that this mini-series’ author actually thought the titular character’s first appearance in the “Star Wars” film franchise was “A New Hope”, Issue Three of “Lando” noticeably strays away from exclusively focusing upon the “prodigious gambler” and instead attempts to fill in some of the gaps as to the background of his “long-time friend Lobot”. Regrettably however, whilst such a change in direction is laudable, especially after Charles Soule’s disappointingly dire previous attempts to capture Billy Dee Williams’ wonderfully charismatic ‘silver screen’ portrayal of Calrissian, the Columbia Law School graduate’s depiction of the future Cloud City Chief Administrative assistant is arguably even worse, with the cyborg apparently proving to be little more than a living “locomotive system” for his neurocortical implants”.
Indeed, having been badly wounded by “the full force of an Imperial Guards’ staff” “Lo” is swiftly consigned to being little more than a piece of disorientated mumbling baggage who needs carrying to “a medical bay one deck down.” This clumsy use of “Lando’s aide” as a mere plot device is made all the more frustrating when its revealed that the man is apparently in more danger of allowing his implants… to take over his mind” and “lose himself” than bleeding to death from his substantial wound; “If my body is healing… I can hold back… the implants.”
Just as disconcerting is the “New York Times best-selling comic book” writer’s usage of this comic’s supporting cast members, most noticeably the “alien clone warriors Aleksin and Pavel”. These “baddest blades in the galaxy” genuinely seem to have been included within the narrative solely to provide some worthy opposition to “the Emperor’s personal protectors” and appear unworthy of being bestowed even the simplest snatches of dialogue. The inclusion of “antiquity specialist” Korin Pers” is equally as perplexing, especially as the female Ugnaught lost her eye as a result of one of Lando’s smuggling schemes. Galactic credits clearly mean a lot to the diminutive Sava or else its hard imagine why the armed ‘historian’ would accompany a man she so clearly despises on any sort of adventure, perilous or not… But then again Soule clearly needs someone within Calrissian’s contrived crew to recognise the true treasure within Emperor Palpatine’s luxury space yacht and inform both the romantic smuggler, as well as the reader, that all the valuable artefacts stored within the stolen vessel’s “central chamber” belong to the Sith.
This book’s biggest drawback though has to be the indistinct, hastily sketched and overly dark artwork of Alex Maleev and colorist Paul Mounts. The Bulgarian illustrator’s drawings are particularly difficult to endure during the fight scenes between the writer’s panther-people and the Emperor’s red-garbed finest, due to the horribly wooden and unnatural poses given to the combatants.
|Writer: Charles Soule, Artist: Alex Maleev, and Colors: Paul Mounts|