The heist is on in Break Out, a new sci-fi series that pits a few high school kids against an unimaginable threat. That threat has been plucking kids out of their lives and bringing them into their giant cubed hover crafts. Liam Watts lost his brother and he’ll stop at nothing to save him, but how do you do that? With his heist crew assembled, we start to find out in Break Out #2, out this week.
The first issue was the part of the heist where the heroes assemble a team, each member of whom has specific skills. In the second issue, it’s about using those skills to perfect themselves or the tech they’ll need to actually pull off the heist of the century. This issue moves along at a fast clip, cutting between different locations and times to show how Liam and his team are working quickly and efficiently.
Zack Kaplan breaks up the story nicely into chapters. This issue heavily focuses on the prep but also establishes another factor in the breakout of his brother. By the end of the issue, you’ll be ready for more.
Good lord, is Wilton Santos’s art great in this issue. It’s highly detailed and immaculate no matter the scene, character, or alien tech on the page. Santos plays around with layout here and there, mixing things up so it’s not so conventional, helping move the dialogue along as well. Vehicles, clothes, you name it, look photorealistic in detail. On one page, the blending of detailed characters, clouds, and a ship create a beautiful combination that is highly believable, but also incredibly fantastical.
Colors by Jason Wordie are solid as well, pulling off good shadows on tricky things like t-shirts or jeans.
The only downside to this issue is how Liam is kind of a jerk and also a bad leader. He doesn’t seem to bring much to this team beyond enthusiasm. Sure, he lost his brother and wants him back, but not quite enough is done to make him likable or relatable. He’s a drill sergeant who always appears to be doing nothing at all. Likely there’ll be a twist later on to show he was doing the most important job of all and not telling his crew, but it’s hard to root for him at this point. It doesn’t help he’s putting them all in danger and doesn’t seem to care one bit about anyone.
Break Out #2 is a good set up for our big confrontation. Like any heist story, the buildup to the actual heist needs to be entertaining and quick, which this issue depicts well. The main character isn’t the most likable, but boy does this issue make you feel like you need to read the next chapter.
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