REVIEW: ‘Blade Runner 2029,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Blade Runner 2029 #2 - But Why Tho?

Blade Runner 2029 #2 is written by  Mike Johnson (with Michael Green, K. Perkins, and Mellow Brown as creative consultants), with art by Andres Guinaldo, colors by Marco Lesko, and letters by Jim Campbell. It is published by Titan Comics. After the events of the first issue, Blade Runner Aahna “Ash” Ashina starts tracking down leads concerning the Replicant known as “Yotun.”

Mystery stories, by their very nature, are a slow burn. It’s all about putting together the pieces and finding out the motive behind the crime. However, there’s a difference between a slow burn and a glacial pace and unfortunately this issue fits the latter description. Apart from a massive cliffhanger at the end, and an action sequence in the middle of the book, not much really happens in the issue. I’m not expecting every issue to have a massive earth-shaking plot twist, but it should at least contain some semblance of plot and move the story forward.

That being said, I did enjoy Ash’s inner narration. Johnson writes her monologues in the style of a noir detective, complete with musings about an “itch” she gets when she is on the trail of a clue. Campbell places the narration into tan boxes, which perfectly match the trenchcoat that Ash is wearing – a nice touch. The aforementioned chase scene was also great, brought solidly to life by Guinaldo and Lesko. When a Replicant rips off a door and throws it at Ash, Guinaldo frames the impact like a film shot: Ash is shown flying through the air, with glass and metal from the damaged door flying everywhere. (This is another thing I like about the world of Blade Runner; its antagonists are superhuman while its protagonists are often not-which leads to more dynamic struggles.)

Guinaldo also continues to bring the world of Blade Runner to life via his art. Los Angeles continues to have a fusion of Japanese culture and cold, sterile steel with smoke and fog rising up from the ground. Clothing also varies from character to character; Ash’s tan coat and dark shades provide a contrast to the urban wear the other citizens of LA wear. The entire issue takes place on the ground, providing a contrast to the towering skyscrapers that are often a constant of the Blade Runner universe.

Rounding out the artistitc team is Lesko on colors. His palette varies from scene to scene; a medical lab has a blue tint that feels appropriately cold and sterile, while scenes set in an underground club have a warm orange tint to them. Lesko also manages to make perfect use of shadows, was characters enter into dark alleys and hallways. The coloring is a change of pace from the bright neon that often defines cyberpunk fiction, yet it still hews to the noir aesthetic.

Blade Runner 2029 #2 slams the brakes on its main plot, which leads to a rather uneventful issue with glacial pacing but impressive visuals. Hopefully, next issue will provide a change of pace.

Blade Runner 2029 #2 is available wherever comics are sold and through Comixology using our affiliate link.

 


Blade Runner 2029 #2
3.5

TL;DR

Blade Runner 2029 #2 slams the brakes on its main plot, which leads to a rather uneventful issue with glacial pacing but impressive visuals. Hopefully, next issue will provide a change of pace.