Things pick up exactly where we left off: Mal and Moon are in a tight jam, and Zoe’s trying to keep a hand on the powder keg that she finds herself sitting on. Meanwhile, Inara tries diplomacy to save Mal. I’m pretty amazed at how much plot Greg Pak manages to cram into this issue. There are a lot of good things in this issue, including where Mal and Zoe end up (both physically and emotionally), but one of Pak’s greatest achievements is the creation of Boss Moon. She’s methodical, reckless, loves her mother, and, most of all, is a loyal comrade. Moon is quickly becoming one of those characters that I wish we had met on the show, and her relationship with Mal is quickly becoming one of the highlights of this series. It’s one of the ways that Pak’s writing on this series is constantly surprising me.
Dan McDaid’s art keeps getting stronger with each installment. Although likenesses aren’t necessarily McDaid’s strong suit here, I feel like he’s gotten better at them over time, and his Inara in this issue is gorgeous! Without giving too much away, there is a moment when Mal finds himself in the last place he ever wanted to see again, and the silent panels of him walking through it are just so well done! Gah, the entire issue is gorgeous!
Overall: The first issue of the new arc really sets the tone and pace for the Second Unification War.
Creative Team: Greg Pak (writer), Dan McDaid (art), Marcelo Costa (colors), Jim Campbell (letterer)
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
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