5 Highlights From Marvel's Star Wars: Darth Vader #1 Comic
Star Wars comics are back at Marvel and love them or hate them, the comic book giant is churning out some of the most entertaining tales the franchise has seen in years. Following the the brilliant Star Wars #1 and #2, Marvel today released Star Wars: Darth Vader #1, and it's well worth your time to read it, even if you aren't a hardcore Star Wars fan. Written by Kieron Gillen with art by Salvador Larocca and color by Edgar Delgado, Marvel's Star Wars: Darth Vader series centers on the moments after the Death Star was destroyed in the Battle of Yavin, which means that everyone's favorite Dark Lord of the Sith finds himself under a rather large amount of pressure from his boss, Emperor Palpatine. Here are just a few of the highlights from a thoroughly entertaining issue.
Kieron Gillen is one of the best writers around, so it's no surprise that the dialogue in Star Wars: Darth Vader #1 is top-notch. Despite these high expectations, I still found myself pleasantly surprised at how well Gillen has captured the essence of Vader. Throughout the issue Vader delivers a number of brilliant lines, but it's this exchange with Jabba that stands out. When Jabba remarks "You arrive a day early, kill two of my guards and expect me to deal with you?" Vader responds with "I have only killed two. Do not make me reconsider my generosity." BOOM!
Larocca's depiction of Vader
Larocca has not always been popular with comic book fans in the past, but Darth Vader #1 should have many nodding in approval. Granted, not everyone will enjoy the photorealistic approach, but I personally found that Larocca's Vader really added to the story and there are a few scenes which really blew me away. Though he hides behind a mask, the emotions Vader is feeling at this low, low point in his life are clear for all to see and that's all thanks to Larocca's art.
Close ties to the original trilogy
When Vader visits Jabba, it's no coincidence that the following scenes will remind you of his son's similar trip in Return of the Jedi. If their first three issues of Star Wars comics are anything to go by, Marvel is going back to basics with this franchise, and that's a good thing. Keeping everything closely tied to the original universe allows Marvel's writers to add context to an already familiar story, expanding on beloved character's back-stories and who knows, maybe set up some easter eggs for future big screen ventures.
The Emperor rages
For many, Vader is the epitome of bad-ass villainy, but in this issue we are given perhaps the strongest reminder yet that in many ways, Vader is seen as nothing more than a henchman by his master, Emperor Palpatine. Having suffered a damaging defeat at the Battle of Yavin, we see Emperor Palpatine scolding Vader and humiliating him by sending him on a errand boy mission to his home planet. Hopefully we'll continue to see exchanges between Master and Apprentice throughout this series we await the release of Paul S. Kemp's new novel, Lords of the Sith.
That closing image
The issue ends with Vader on his home planet, and while I don't want to give too much away, I will say that seeing him there in that final image was incredibly powerful. It's this last page that has me convinced that Star Wars: Darth Vader is going to be one heck of a series.
Marvel's Star Wars: Darth Vader #1 is out now.