– Spoiler Review –
Darth Vader uncovers what the Emperor has been planning behind his back and it’s…well, let’s just say Darth Vader #5 doesn’t do a perfect job explaining it, but it’s a highly unexpected research project that raises tons of questions and opens up intriguing new avenues never before explored in Star Wars.
With a name so close to Cylon, I should’ve guessed Doctor Cylo-IV was anything but human. He seems to be a cyborg of sorts, able to have his consciousness/memory banks uploaded somewhere and downloaded on new bodies. As for the rest of his group, it’s also unclear what exactly they all are, but they also seem to be cobbled together (Black Krrsantan found him smuggling alien parts last issue) cyborgs of Cylo’s design with skills that are almost equivalent to the Force. There’s a lot of new and intriguing information thrown our way and it’s not explained very well in DV #5 and it left me scratching my head for a bit and will likely make you do the same. I get having a sense of mystery, but when you have so many new and strange things being introduced at once, a little more information would’ve been appreciated. A second read through can clarify Cylo and his creations a bit, but it’s definitely a lot to take in: Cylo is offering the Emperor replacements for a failed apprentice and he seems to be interested in creating a world were the Force is insignificant. Interestingly enough, that ties into something we’ve recently learned about the Emperor’s goals in the new canon…but more on that in a bit.
My favorite thing about this issue was the Emperor’s appearance, as this whole time I thought Vader might have finally been operating outside of his Master’s ever watchful eyes. But with Palpatine showing up, it seems as usual he has foreseen all, and possibly even planted the seeds to see what his apprentice would do with them. Despite his feelings about the Death Star being Vader’s failure, Sheev will always be testing Vader so that he may prove himself worthy again, as being a Sith apprentice means to always be challenged (Or the Emperor knows Vader will come back into his good graces and just enjoys torturing the crap out of Vader for pure enjoyment). Cylo’s desire to see the Force obsolete ties into a few moments in the recent novel Tarkin which revealed Palpatine’s goal to dominate the Force and essentially cease its existence. If he can pull that off, he’ll still need a way to keep his power (which he talks about to Anakin in Revenge of the Sith) and what better way to do that than have a powerful cyborg race with skills equivalent to the Force? Mind you, that’s all speculation and we certainly don’t have a clear idea about Sheev’s plans with the cyborgs yet, but it’s definitely something to ponder while we wait to see if #6 answers that question and the several others raised by #5.
Here are a few other things:
- It’s a bummer to see Aphra get sidelined here, but this is titled Darth Vader, not Doctor Aphra. That being said, let’s cut the Boba Fett Anthology film rumors and give Aphra one instead.
- Triple-Zero was a good distraction.
- The Dork Side of the Force’s review also felt like the new reveals weren’t handled so well, but point out the strong theme of organic life being twisted for strange technological purposes throughout the issue.
- No, I don’t know what those space whales are. No, I don’t understand them either. Yes, I’m just going along with it anyways too.
Darth Vader #5 might not be an easy one to wrap your head around, but once you dig into the details and start making connections, it could be a very important piece in several puzzles.
+ Cylo and the Emperor’s possibly like-minded plans
+ Unexpected surprises
– Confusing reveals
STAR WARS CANON COMIC REVIEWS:
Vader: #1 | #2 | #3 | #4 | #6 | Shadows and Secrets (#7-12) | The Shu-Torun War (#16-19) | End of Games (#20-25)
Vader Down (crossover of Star Wars and Darth Vader on-goings)
Skywalker Strikes (#1-6) | Old Ben’s Journals | Showdown on the Smuggler’s Moon (#8-12) | Rebel Jail (#16-19) | The Last Flight of the Harbinger (#21-25) | Annual: #1
The Last Padawan (#1-6) | First Blood (#7-12)
Poe Dameron (on-going)
Han Solo (mini-series)
Obi-Wan & Anakin (mini-series)
Shattered Empire (mini-series)
Princess Leia (mini-series)
Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir (mini-series)