04 Geek on Comics

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Ah Star Wars, can anything done in your name be bad? I mean, aside from Jar Jar Binks and Ewoks. For today’s first comic book review, I thought I’d take a look at Dark Horse’s Star Wars #5. After all, it’s been a while since I’ve seen or read any new material in the amazing world created by master storyteller George Lucas. And I’ve always been curious about how Dark Horse handled the material.

The script by writer Brian Wood is phenomenal. All the the story elements, action, and dialog sets us right in a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. He opens the story up with a dog fight between Leia’s squadron of X-Wings and a squad of TIE Fighters! Talk about heaven!We are then taken to the seedy underground of Coruscant where Hans Solo and Chewbacca are trying to get new identities so they can get off the planet before the Falcon becomes spare parts. Little do they know that Bobba Fett is not far behind them. Luckily, they run into an Imperial traitor who is willing to help them. Finally, we are taken to the new Death Star where Darth Vader hands command over to someone else so he can pursue Luke which he proclaims as the greatest threat to the empire. There are some instances of boring exposition captions though, which we find annoying. Overall though, this is not a comic book script based on Star Wars or inspired by it; it is a Star Wars script and we commend Wood on his work.

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Carlos D’Anda provides the art for the comic and I love everything he did with it. His art is an excellent blend of old and new. He brings the new in the corm of great angles and facial expressions, the kind one finds in the best comics of the current day and age. Then, as a love letter to the original trilogy, he throws in shots directly from the movies. My personal favorite is the panel depicting Colonel Bircher in the cockpit of his TIE as he pursues Leia.

Colors for the issue are done by Gabe Eltaeb and they are great. His work brings the story to life from the Coruscant undergroud to the explosion of a Star Destroyer to the evil red inside the TIE cockpit. We imagine this is what comic books would look like if they could be polished and put on Blu-Ray. The best example of this is the very last page, a closeup of Vader, his helmet a lustrous sable with amazing illumination gleaming off it from behind. Beautiful work Gabe!

We give you our highest recommendation on this issue and, if other issues of this title are equally good we strongly suggest becoming a monthly reader. Even I don’t feel like I can call myself a Star Wars fan after admitting I’ve never read this before. That is a problem I shall soon remedy. Dark Horse’s Star Wars #5 gets ½