“They try to kill me four times.”
That’s an opening line if I’ve ever heard one, and a perfect opening for a heist comic. We’re all familiar with heist movies such as Baby Driver or Ocean’s 11 — they’re movies entirely centered around a mission to steal something and, often times, they’re quite fun. They are typically limited to the big screen so that you can start and finish the mission in one sitting, but that doesn’t mean that the heist concept can’t or shouldn’t be translated to comics. In Heist #1, that’s exactly what Paul Tobin, Arjuna Susini, Vittorio Astone, and Saida Temofonte try and succeed in doing. Heist #1 includes all of all of the basic heist-planning elements, assembling the crew, revealing the backstories, setting the context, identifying the element, and adding the unplanned element, all under a thick layer of eloquence and charm.
Heist stands out immediately thanks to how easily your eyes flow from panel to panel in addition to the unusual style of first person narration from our protagonist Glane Breld. First person narration on its own is fairly common and something few would think twice about, but here, Glane is replaying every scene in his mind and narrating what he is physically doing in the moment as well as what he is thinking. It’s pretty bad-ass and definitely accomplishes the task of making this book stand out. Glane’s confidence and attitude extends to the rest of the issue, and within a few pages, you’ll fall under its spell.
Susini and Astone succeed in immersing us into the world of Heist almost immediately. Susini has a phenomenal sense of perspective and uses angles to the book’s full potential. The way scenes change angles, it feels like a movie in that it all flows together while providing many different perspectives. Astone also goes a long way towards setting the mood for the book with his color choices, particularly his characteristic use of purples. The entire book is bathed in a wondrous purple hue that you just don’t see much outside of Astone’s work. These choices combined with Susini’s thicker, more frenzied line work breathe a bustling planet to life. Susini does a great job of filling out crowd scenes with a variety of characters that feel like real beings just by looking at them, and even throughout the smoothness with which the book flows, you never lose the seedy, grimy feeling you get from many of the characters from Planet Heist.