Last month we got to see Jim Zub’s unique take on the Forgotten Realms lore with his new mini-series Legends of Baldur’s Gate, which is intended as a tie-in effort by Wizards of the Coast for the upcoming expansion Tyranny of Dragons. The first issue, right out of the gate, was an excellent one and stands as one of my favourites all year. Both Jim and artist Max Dunbar did a pretty awesome job with the issue, and the adventures of Minsc, Delina and Boo proved to be very entertaining and fun, in all the right ways. Plus there was a nice larger mystery that involved the characters and that helped set the pace for the story.
This past week’s Legends of Baldur’s Gate #2 continues the story of Minsc, Delina and Boo as the three of them meet up with a couple of thieves who are willing to help them find refuge from Baldur’s Gate’s Watch. Last issue we got introduced to the primary characters, and while this week we get to meet many more characters, we also see the narrative move forward as the mystery of Delina’s twin brother’s disappearance deepens, and we see some of who and what the mysterious cabal operating in Baldur’s Gate is like. As with the first issue, Jim and Max do an awesome job once again.
I loved the humour most of all in Jim’s first issue of the title and it is nice to see that everything that made the first issue so good is carried forward into the second issue, especially the humour. Minsc and Boo are an excellent pair of characters and by pairing them with Delina, Jim has created a recipe for fun and entertaining that transcends the material itself. Honestly, I couldn’t help but laugh at some of the scenes involving Minsc, since he has such a great sense of humour without even realising it and his “method of speech” is quite funny itself. Not to mention that he talks in a very odd way and that sets up a lot of the gags in this new issue.
The best part without a doubt however was when we see some of the bad guys behind Delina’s brother’s disappearance, and the good guys are attacked by the bad. I loved seeing that because it actually moved the story forward in a very tangible sort of way, and thus became a much better experience. I’d expected some plot development of course, but I’d also expected character development far more, and even as Jim introduces two new characters, he gives us enough about both that it appears as if they’ve been right there from the start, which makes for a rather pleasant experience.
Really though, it is the characters who make this comic, and they all rock it here from start to finish. We get to see some flashbacks from Delina’s childhood that inform on how she is and what kind of a relationship she had with her brother. Given the type of story that Jim is telling, it makes sense for this to happen now since it gives context to what Delina is doing and the reader also has a reason to care about her brother, not just her. And Minsc, well, Minsc is Minsc and Boo is Book. Together they perform quite a few comedy routines and I lived for those moments since they made it all so damn worthwhile.
There still aren’t any dragons in this story, but I’m holding out hope that they will make an appearance soon, because otherwise would be quite disappointing and we can’t have that now, can we?
Max Dunbar is the artist here with John-Paul Bove on colours with Joana Lafuente and then Neil Uyetake doing the letters. The art here is absolutely brilliant. I especially love the cover, which is very striking in its composition. I don’t know who the artist is however, so that will have to it. The action scenes, Minsc, Delina, everything was top-notch and I loved the artwork since there’s such a great mesh between Max and John-Paul, something that doesn’t happen so often in comics, definitely not among the regular series.
So yes, another great issue in the making that provides more fuel for the next one!
More Legends of Baldur’s Gate: #1.
More Dungeons & Dragons: Shadowplague.