– Spoiler Review –
Star Wars #2 feels like unpausing the movie that was Star Wars #1, and without ever really slowing the pace, it’s suddenly time to pause again. This is a ride you’ll want to get on soon.
While a battle between Darth Vader and a completely untrained Luke goes about as you’d expect it, their conversation is the real interesting part of it. Instead of taking away from their duel in The Empire Strikes Back, the one in #2 actually enhances it. Luke gets his chance to air his grievances about Vader ‘killing’ his father and Obi-Wan, with Vader’s responses fit with where his state of mind seemed to be in A New Hope. But when Vader suddenly realizes the saber he stole from Luke is oddly familiar, it shocks and surprises him, making him wonder just what Obi-Wan was planning with Luke. This puts him on the path towards the Vader seen in ESB who has the almost obsessive mission to hunt down young Skywalker and I’m sure we’ll find out more about the repercussions of their meeting to Vader once his comic starts on Wednesday (2/11/15).
Having his father’s Jedi blade and Han stomping around in an AT-AT are the only reasons Luke’s alive (one might call that luck), but things are far from over. Vader decimates most of the fleeing slaves, killing them by guiding his Jedi blade around with the Force, leaving Luke to question his actions and blaming their deaths on himself. There’s a bit of a weird tonal shift when #2 intercuts between Luke wallowing over the slave’s deaths with the humorous bickering of Han and Leia and the plight of 3PO verses the scavenger aliens. But it works thanks to the strong dialogue and classic movie feeling, a repeat of the solid work from #1 to make this series feel both like a love letter to and worthwhile continuation of the films.
The action and fun never really let up, bringing #2 to a swift end before you realize it’s even over. Our heroes are still trying to escape the planet, but they are all separated (in 3PO’s case, more than literally), with no clue on Chewbacca’s whereabouts (even though he’s featured on the basic cover) and little hope the Falcon will take off when the team gets to it. As bad as things look, it’s hard to feel like they’re in much danger and it’s hard not to be excited to see how things unfold in the next issue.
Here’s a few other things:
- The shot of Vader holding both his Sith and Jedi weapon, about to execute Luke like he did Count Dooku, was one the greatest images from this issue. What a great shot to recall the older scene, plus a neat idea to have him holding two of his blades.
- Han still disbelieving the Force as Vader is lifting the AT-AT was another great moment.
- “Mother of moons,” might be the best new GFFA saying, ever.
- While I’ve enjoyed the art in both issues so far, there were one odd looking shot in #2: Luke on page 12, where he’s proud to be a farmboy, had a little bit of creepy vibe to me.
+ Luke and Vader’s conversation
+ Han and Leia bickering
STAR WARS CANON COMIC REVIEWS:
Skywalker Strikes: #1 | #3 | #4 | #5 | #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)
Vader Down (crossover of Star Wars and Darth Vader on-goings)
Vader (#1-6) | Shadows and Secrets (#7-12) | The Shu-Torun War (#16-19) | End of Games (#20-25) | 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)