Darth Maul #3 goes about how you’d expect with a fun twist at the end. The real twist though is that Cad, Aurra, and the Jedi Padawan are the most intriguing parts of the book. It’s not what I expected. (Okay, maybe I sort of expected the Padawan part.) Honestly, it’s impressive that two issues of a comic have done what however many episodes of the TV show couldn’t. I’m genuinely interested in Cad Bane and Aurra Sing and wouldn’t mind seeing more of their adventures in this era.
There’s something that feels just a little bit strange about the pacing of this book. Things are most certainly happening in the book and yet it feels slow at times. Perhaps it has to do with how there hasn’t been a ton of action in the book and that Maul tends to internally monologue a lot. I know that I said I liked it last issue as opposed to hearing Maul talk a lot but I’m revising my opinion as it’s gotten to be a bit much. I think I would have been more intrigued by a comic that approached the main character how Chewbacca did by not putting readers inside of his head. Don’t get me wrong: Maul still feels very much like the pre-The Phantom Menace Darth Maul but, just like his later mechanical bottom half self, I want to strangle him a little bit.
As for the book as a whole, I’m still not sure how I feel about it. Issue #4 might end up being the deciding factor as to whether this is a book that everyone will like or mostly a book that fans of the character will like. In the mean time, the book’s fine and, well, I guess we’ll see where it goes.
Darth Maul #3: Cullen Bunn/Writer, Luke Ross/Artist, Nolan Woodard/Colorist, Joe Caramagna/Letterer, Jordan White/Editor, Heather Antos/Assistant Editor
As suspected, Darth Maul #2 is where the fun begins. Even though Maul is supposed to go nowhere near the Jedi, he heads off after the Xrexus Cartel who’ve captured a Jedi Padawan and are auctioning her off to the highest bidder. Since he has to be stealthy about it, he hires a team of bounty hunters (including Cad Bane and Aurra Sing) to assist him on his mission. What could possibly go wrong?
One thing that I really like about this book is how Maul feels more like the Maul we met in The Phantom Menace as opposed to the Maul we see in The Clone Wars. In other words… he doesn’t talk a whole lot. Internally monologue? Sure. Verbally chatter? Nah. The addition of the bounty hunters definitely helps the book out so we can get out of Maul’s head a little bit more. Heck, I’m actually even really enjoying Cad Bane in the book so far and I was never terribly fond of him during The Clone Wars.
It’s worth reiterating that Luke Ross and Nolan Woodward on art are a great combination for this book. I’m particularly fond of their larger crowd scenes since it looks like Ross had a ton of fun picking a plethora of aliens to include. It’s little things like that which help a book feel very Star Wars.
The verdict? Darth Maul’s not just a book for fans of the Sith Lord but definitely also a good book for fans of bounty hunters.
Darth Maul #2: Cullen Bunn/Writer, Luke Ross/Artist, Nolan Woodard/Colorist, Joe Caramagna/Letterer, Jordan White/Editor, Heather Antos/Assistant Editor
“Twin Suns” featured the long-awaited rematch between Obi-Wan Kenobi, now a hermit on Tatooine, and Maul, once a Sith, now a wanderer bent on getting his revenge. Ezra is also along for (most of) the ride, because this is Rebels so of course he is. Whether or not this episode lived up to the hype will depend on your certain point of view. As for me? Well, I was…whelmed.
Maul is one of those characters where it seems like most people either love him or can’t stand him anymore. I personally fall into the second category mostly because I don’t know why he keeps not dying. But hey! A pre-TPM story about him? Count me as intrigued.
Darth Maul #1 is a lot of character building and plot set up. There’s a lot of time spent in Maul’s head and uhhh… spoilers: he’s kinda violent. At times, it felt like a little bit too much especially given that we don’t even hear about this padawan from the solicits until the last few pages but bigger fans of the character will likely really dig it. Personally, I loved getting to see Maul take on a rathtar. It’s a nice blending of the eras and besides, it’s not like Maul doesn’t have a fine tradition of taking on aliens who originally hail from much further down the timeline. One of the places where the issue fell short for me was with Palpatine. That’s not really a mark against the book and Cullen Bunn though. It’s more that I don’t think we’ll see anyone else write as great of a Palpatine as Charles Soule in our comics any time soon.
On the art front, the combination of Luke Ross and Nolan Woodard is a good one for this book. Their combined style fits nicely with the vibe Bunn seems to be going for. I definitely prefer to this to Ross’s prior Star Wars work on The Force Awakens comic adaptation.
As a side note, Marvel has continued its tradition of giving us a little something extra to go with the first issues and honestly, I could read an entire graphic novel that’s nothing but cute little droids getting into trouble if Chris Eliopoulos and Jordie Bellaire write and draw it.
But back to the main Maul story… is it worth it? If you’re a fan of the character than definitely yes it is. While I liked the issue well enough, I’m inclined to hold off from telling those more of the fence to run off and buy it just yet. Ask me again after the next issue.
Darth Maul #1: Cullen Bunn/Writer, Luke Ross/Artist, Nolan Woodard/Colorist, Joe Caramagnas/Letterer, Jordan White/Editor, Heather Antos/Assistant Editor
The unused Clone Wars storyline comes to an end today ad Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir #4 by Jeremy Barlow and Juan Frigeri hits comic book stores today. But will Darth Maul and Mother Talzin’s plan for revenge against Darth Sidious succeed?
This review contains some spoilers for the issue.
Darth Maul returns to Dathomir with Count Dooku, intent on using the Sith’s very life force to give Mother Talzin a physical body once more. But Darth Sidious is hardly going to let his former apprentice destroy his carefully laid plans. That can only mean another facedown between Master and former Apprentice!
Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir #3 by Jeremy Barlow and Juan Frigeri hits comic store shelves today and Maul’s vendetta against Darth Sidious continues!
Count Dooku and General Grievous are now captives of Darth Maul after a fierce battle in the last issue. Maul tries to convince Dooku to abandon Darth Sidious and work with him and Mother Talzin instead. Meanwhile, the Jedi have gotten wind of Maul’s latest victory and spot an opportunity to take out two enemies at the same time…
It’s difficult to discuss this issue without going into the “surprising facts from Maul’s past” that the solicit alluded to so from this point onward, this review will have spoilers despite my usual policy to write spoiler free.
Sidious’s plan to lure Mother Talzin into the open continues right along with Maul’s anger and desire for victory. Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir #2 by Jeremy Barlow and Juan Frigeri hits comic store shelves today.
There’s no reprieve from battle as Maul’s forces retreat to Ord Mantell. Mother Talzin sends him a ship full of fierce Nightbrother warriors as reinforcements but will they be enough to withstand the attacks led by Count Dooku and General Grievous?
This comic is special, folks. It has the distinction of being the first comic or book published to officially be a part of the new canon. Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir with a script by Jeremy Barlow and pencils by Juan Frigeri takes one of the unused story ideas from The Clone Wars’ unfinished Sixth Season and brings it to life on paper but does it work? Read on to find out!
Darth Maul’s plans to conqueror the galaxy were halted when his former master decides to chop them right in half before he could get very far with his Mandalorian and Underworld army. Held captive in a secret prison, Maul’s efforts seem to have found their end. Sidious’s plotting, on the other hand, is just beginning. He believes that Mother Talzin survived the invasion of Dathomir and he’s willing use Maul as bait to lure the Nightsister back out.
The title on this Newsarama post is incredibly misleading, so here’s the gist: Dark Horse will be creating a comic arc to wrap up the Darth Maul story seen in the fifth and final Clone Wars season. Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir will be a four-part mini arc based on unused screenplays and plans from The Clone Wars. What this won’t be is the series finale that Newsarama claims it is. For clarification, Pablo Hidalgo and Jen Heddle took to Twitter.
So again, this is not the series finale and that’s probably not something you should expect from any of the tie-in or bonus content. Functionally, the season five finale is the series finale. We may get some closure to smaller character arcs from the bonus content, but I wouldn’t expect anything more definitive than the finale we’ve already gotten.
I found this great website via Tor.com. The Geek Art blog features – as you would expect – all sorts of geek oriented art. The portraits of Darth Maul by Nicky Barkla and Ellen Ripley by Stan Chow are two of my favorites.
Be sure to check out the blog for more awesome Geek Art!