ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Blade Runner: Origins,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Blade Runner Origins #1

Blade Runner: Origins #1 is written by K. Perkins, Mellow Brown, and Mike Johnson, illustrated by Fernando Dagnino, colored by Marco Lesko, and illustrated by Jim Campbell. It is published by Titan Comics. In the year 2009, LAPD Detective Cal Moreaux is assigned to investigate the murder of a scientist in the Tyrell Corporation. As Moreaux conducts his investigation, he is drawn into Tyrell’s shadowy dealings and their Replicant program, which soon leads to the Blade Runner program’s formation.

Titan Comics had previously fleshed out the Blade Runner universe with the Blade Runner 2019 and Blade Runner 2029 comics. This series goes back even further in time to the beginning of the Blade Runners themselves. As a result, everything looks different than what fans are used to, courtesy of Dangino’s art. Instead of the bright neon buildings and flying cars that one would associate with the Blade Runner films, Los Angeles has either perpetually hazy sunlight or a dark, rainy atmosphere. Thanks to Lesko’s colors, the latter environment really pops, with the dark skies and perpetual rain adding to the comics’ noir elements.

Dangino also designs a unique cast of characters, beginning with Moreaux. Moreaux’s snow-white hair and piercing gaze mark him as a man who is haunted by his own past. Two sequences, in the beginning, bring these problems to light. On the opposite end of the spectrum is Ilora Stahl, one of the high-ranking members of the Tyrell Corporation. Ilora wears all white, and her face is fixed in an unnatural smile, in contrast to the black shirt and dark tan trench coat that Moreaux is always wearing. The two are clearly posed as opposites, and hopefully, the story will see them interacting more.

Johnson, who wrote Blade Runner 2019 and is currently writing Blade Runner 2029, returns to shape the world of Blade Runner: Origins. Johnson is obviously no stranger to the Blade Runner universe, and alongside Perkins and Brown, he pulls from existing Blade Runner media to craft the story for origins. The Tyrell Corporation has long been an omnipresent force in the Blade Runner universe, and Moreaux is a veteran of the Kalanthia warzones that were mentioned in Blade Runner 2049 and Blade Runner 2022: Blackout. Fans of the films will appreciate these shoutouts, while newcomers will be able to come into the issue fresh.

Another upside to Johnson co-writing Origins is that he knows how to craft a compelling mystery. In the space of 26 pages, the issue delivers a murder mystery and introduces elements of a conspiracy within Tyrell. How this leads to the Blade Runner’s existence remains to be seen, but this remains a solid start to the story arc.

Blade Runner: Origins #1 features a solid start to its story, immersing readers in a time before the first Blade Runner film. Fans of Titan’s previous Blade Runner series or the films will definitely want to check this out, as it provides a genesis for the films.

Blade Runner: Origins #1 is available wherever comics are sold.

Blade Runner: Origins #1 
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TL;DR

Blade Runner: Origins #1 features a solid start to its story, immersing readers in a time before the first Blade Runner film. Fans of Titan’s previous Blade Runner series or the films will definitely want to check this out, as it provides a genesis for the films.