In Volume 1, we left Jooheon in Las Vegas. He needs funds—a lot of funds and quickly. So, what’s better than hitting the casinos? But when an acquaintance from his previous life appears, Irene Holton, Jooheon is stumped. He cannot believe she’s the same person. Her personality is completely different. What has happened to turn her into a powerful and cold-hearted being in his previous life? Jooheon thought he would be safe from Irene, aka the King of Bankruptcy, by staying as far away from her as he could. In fact, due to Irene’s relic, she brings misfortune to whoever is near her.
With his second chance at life just starting, Jooheon doesn’t want to get involved with her. But Irene doesn’t give him much option. When Jooheon realises how he can use Irene, he accepts to help her solve her misfortune issue, but Irene doesn’t realise she has just made a deal with the devil (metaphorically speaking, of course).
And little by little, people from his past life find themselves in front of Jooheon, whether he’s looking for them or not. It’s also the case for Taejoon Kwon, Jooheon’s sworn enemy, who can’t accept that Jooheon is not falling for his tricks. He wants to have power and Jooheon is in his way. But a mysterious tomb appears in the middle of their fight, and it’s up to Jooheon to save the day, the people, and maybe get a little bit of revenge on Taejoon Kwon.
Although it’s an unfortunate encounter, Jooheon learns more about the relics that his enemy possesses, and the length Taejoon is willing to go to be above everyone one else. Thankfully, his past comrades are there to help him. Willingly or not. Jaeha Yoo is the best person to restore relics, and although he doesn’t remember Jooheon, the latter won’t let him get away from him.
I think this is the best manhwa I’ve read to showcase an antihero. Jooheon, the main protagonist, has gone back to the past, thanks to a mysterious relic. In this second chance at life, he wants to get revenge on Taejoon Kwon, the person who caused the death of his comrades and himself. He’ll destroy Taejoon with all means at his disposal. People need to get on board with him or be ready to fall together with Taejoon. Moreover, I enjoy how there are no damsels in distress in this manhwa, and Jooheon treats everyone the same. No matter the gender. If you get in his way, whether you are a woman, a child or even an old man, you get the same treatment—as an enemy. I’m not sure if it’s done purposely by the author or it comes from the translation, but for a lot of terms, only the masculine version is used, such as King of Bankruptcy and not Queen, although Irene is a woman.
Jooheon is a bully and doesn’t hesitate to exploit other people’s weaknesses and strengths. And he doesn’t do anything unless it brings him so much more gain. Jaeha Yoo will definitely experience this as he’s now been forced to work exclusively for Jooheon. We don’t know much about Jaeha, but I’m sure he will become a key character in the series. We get a window into his past, and like Jooheon, Jaeha has been taken advantage of, and maybe with Jooheon’s help, he can get back the recognition that was stolen from him.
We still don’t know anything about the Crow relic that allowed Jooheon to go back in time. It makes an appearance to help Jooheon in the tomb during his fight with Taejoon, but not much is revealed. The other relics don’t like the Crow, and we know a backstory is coming. But what really is the Crow? Why do the relics call it a traitor? What does it want from Jooheon?
As with the previous volume, Volume 2 is full of adventure and action from the first page. The colours are vivid and the illustration quite detailed so that it looks as if you’re watching an anime. Moreover, compared to other manhwa, this series seem to have chunky volumes.
Tomb Raider King Volume 2 by 3B2S, Runs (REDICE STUDIO) and SAN.G is released by Ize Press in print format with an English translation by TapasMediaInc. The series started as a digital comic on Tapas. Volume 3 is slated for release in June 2023.