Review: Star Wars #6

Happy Marvel Star Wars week! Star Wars #6 by Jason Aaron and John Cassaday arrives in comic stores today and heyyyyy look at that cover. Do you think Luke might be in trouble?

As a note, read this issue before this week’s Darth Vader.

Surprising to no one who read the previous issue, Luke’s definitely in trouble. The one and only Boba Fett has tracked him to Kenobi’s hut on Tatooine. Meanwhile, Leia and Han continue their scouting mission to find a new base for the Rebel Alliance. Unfortunately, things don’t quite go our heroes’ ways…

I feel like I say this about every issue but holy wow is this an issue where it’s incredibly apparently what a freaking blast Aaron and Cassaday are having with this book. It’s evident in every single panel and that elevates the book to the next level.

Fett Fans are going to love his fight with Luke. It’s refreshingly different then a lot of what we’ve seen before with either character. Plus, we also get to see Artoo being awesome. That little droid really is the hero the galaxy deserves. It’s storylines like these that make me so grateful for comic books as a medium because it’s awesome to actually get to see how the fight goes down between bounty hunter and the fledgling Jedi.

Han and Leia’s story takes a backseat again this issue but Aaron does throw in a few fun lines along with their banter. It’s also a great opportunity for Cassaday to draw a beautiful new planet that would’ve been a way better base then Hoth.

What intrigues me most about the book though isn’t so much what happens but rather how the fandom will react to the introduction of a new character. (Okay so I’m intrigued by the new character too.)

Star Wars #6 gets a 4/5 from me along with a continuing recommendation to pick it up.

Review: Star Wars #5

The battle against the Empire is far from over as our Rebels continue their search for a new base planet. They’re not the only ones with a mission though as Boba Fett, tasked by Darth Vader, hunts for the pilot who blew up the Death Star. Star Wars #5 by Jason Aaron and John Cassaday arrives in comic stores today, bringing your own search for a new issue to a close.  For this month at least.

This is an issue that will probably make the Boba Fett fanboys very happy. Not being a particular fan of the Fett myself, I can’t say for sure but this is definitely the most we’ve seen of him in the new canon thus far. That said, it does feel like a bit of a departure from the previous versions of Boba and like Jason Aaron is having fun with getting to really create and expand upon the characterization of a character who, quite frankly, didn’t do much more then stand there and look badass in the films. (Warning for the more sensitive: there are a few pages that get fairly violent.)

Bounty hunter aside, this issue does let us get another look at our favorite trio. Luke’s off on his own, headed back to Tatooine in search of answers while Leia convinces Han to be her co-pilot on her latest mission for the alliance. It’s fun to see the beginnings of the antagonistic banter between Leia and Han in the years before it fully develops into the routine arguments that fellow Alliance soldiers just walk through on Hoth.  The relationships between all of the main characters are where Aaron really thrives with this book.

On the art front, I continue to enjoy Cassaday’s work and will definitely miss him when he leaves the book. There’s just something about reading a book where you can tell the artist is loving every minute of his work.

Star Wars #5 continues this book’s trend of being solidly enjoyable and gets another recommendation from Tosche Station.


Review: Star Wars #4

Didn’t get enough Star Wars last weekend? Good news: Star Wars #4 by Jason Aaron and John Cassaday is out today! Our heroes were successful (albeit just barely) in their mission to destroy the weapons factory on Cymoon 1 but what now for both the Rebels and the Empire?

I usually discuss the art after the plot but Cassaday drew such a gorgeous panel of Luke in his pilot helmet towards the end of the issue that I have to mention it right away! I actually paused for a minute just to take in every detail. A lot of gorgeous work went into that one panel between Cassaday’s lines and Laura Martin’s colors. There are also some other very nice pages for Luke fans but wow did that other panel just blow me away. John Cassaday will certainly be missed when he leaves the book.

On the story front, this main Star Wars book and the Darth Vader book definitely seem to be intertwined. It would be interesting to see a more detailed timeline of where each issue falls in relation to the others as this is now the second time we the readers have seen Vader dealing with Jabba. As far as plot goes, this is definitely a transitional set-up issue. Aaron is moving his characters into position for the next arc but it all feels very organic and not like a place holder issue where everyone’s treading water.

Speaking of characters! You can attribute it to either great characterization or wonderful coordination by the story group or both but the Leia featured in Aaron’s book is definitely on the same page as the Leia who is in the pages of Mark Waid’s book. In both, she’s very proactive and trying to do more than the Rebellion will let her. It’s great in terms of both continuity and who Leia Organa is as a person.

Oh yeah. And there’s a character return that’ll definitely have some fans fist pumping the air.

(As a side note, please tell me that someone else out there read the last few lines of the opening scroll and immediately heard Katara’s voice from the Avatar opening…)

Star Wars #4 gets another solid recommendation from me but you’re already reading this book, right?

Review: Star Wars #3

It’s an explosive conclusion this week to the first arc of the new Star Wars comic. Star Wars #3 by Jason Aaron and John Cassaday is out now and so far, they’ve lived up to the promise of their first issue. Luke, Leia, and Han’s mission to destroy the weapons factory hasn’t gone as planned and now, it’ll be tough enough to escape from Vader and the Empire with their lives let alone finish their mission.

As with the previous issues, it’s obvious that this is a labor of love for both Aaron and Cassaday. It’s difficult to say which Aaron does a better job with: the characters or the plot. That’s impressive. His Leia and Han have the perfect level of post-Yavin bickering (aka: not too heavy on the flirting subtext) while Luke is trying to live up to his mental expectations for himself. Or at least what he thinks Obi-Wan and his father would expect of him.

The plot line for this first arc was a great choice. Attacking a weapons factory is a high stakes mission without being involving entire fleets and large armies. It’s the right level of important and tense for a story such as this and, without any spoilers, I found it to have a very satisfying conclusion.

Cassaday’s art with Laura Martin’s colors continue to be a great fit for the book. His panels where he’s having fun with facial expressions are definitely my favorites. The joy on Luke’s face as he flies the speeder, even in the heat of battle, is positively tangible.

As I said in my review of the first issue, the true test of this book will be how the second arc plays out. However, if the last two pages are any indicator, I think it has potential to be just as great.

Star Wars #3 gets a 4/5 from me for both this issue and for the first arc. Go pick up the first three issues if you haven’t yet!

Review: Star Wars #2

Mere weeks after their first issue hit comic store shelves, Jason Aaron and John Cassaday are back with the second issue of the brand new headline Star Wars series. An all-around well-received first issue can be a tough act to follow. Expectations are high so how does Issue #2 stand up?

When last we left our heroes, Luke Skywalker found himself facing off against Darth Vader while Han and Leia were doing their best to find their way out of the weapons factory on Cymoon 1 with all the rescued slaves. It’s a task easier said than done especially since Luke’s training as a Jedi has barely begun much less prepared him to face off against a Sith Lord.

Continue reading

Review: Star Wars #1


The era of Star Wars Marvel has begun (okay; returned) and they’re leaping forth from the gate with blasters blazing. Star Wars #1 by Jason Aaron and with art by John Cassaday comes out on Wednesday, January 14th and picks up shortly after A New Hope. The question of the day though isn’t “Will our heroes survive?” but rather “How does this new series hold up?” and it is in response to that question that I have some good news for Star Wars fans.

Right from the start, Aaron and Cassaday make the book feel like Original Trilogy Star Wars. (Let me suggest queuing up the main title as you open the book. It put a huge smile on my face as I began to read.) This gives readers a chance to pick up a book that can be enjoyed whether they’ve only watched the films or if they obsessively read every Legends story. It’s also clear from the get-go that this is a labor of love from all involved. The basic premise of the story is something that will feel familiar to Star Wars readers (Rebels have a chance to move against the Empire and Han somehow gets roped into helping) but Jason Aaron writes in a way that will keep readers intrigued and flipping the page for more. He also strikes a nice balance between action and non-action scenes and knows the right moment to interject a bit of levity, something that’s crucial when it comes to Star Wars.

Another strength of the book is that Aaron certainly has a great grasp on all of the main characters. At times, it was difficult to NOT hear the actors’ voices inside my head reading the lines. I was particularly happy with his portrayal of Leia especially since he didn’t fall back on the Action Girl ™ method like some writers have in the past. Even Luke seems to be pretty spot on during this odd transitional phase from farmboy to Jedi Rebel.

Cassaday’s artwork on the book is solid as expected. My only issue was with one very fast costume change between pages. In the interest of staying spoiler free, I’ll leave it there but it just felt rather abrupt especially on the first read through. For those familiar with his art, Cassaday’s usual facial expressions are in full force here which, when you’re drawing Leia Organa dealing with Han Solo, are perfect. Cassaday also has a neat way of drawing lightsaber action which I haven’t previously seen in a Star Wars comic. And, of course, we the internet will be forever grateful to him for the panel of Leia punching an Imperial panel that made its way on line several weeks ago. That alone is worth the cost of admission.

Overall, this first oversized issue does a great job of setting the stage and establishing how this comic series will go. Within moments of finishing reading it, I immediately wanted the next one. I’m extremely interested to see how the first arc progresses and then where Jason Aaron takes the story beyond that.  For me, that will be the real deciding factor about how much I’ll ultimately enjoy the series but they are certainly off to a good start.

I give Star Wars #1 a 4/5 along with a recommendation to go pick it up. You can pick up a copy of Star Wars #1 from your local comic store or online here from Marvel.

Thank you to Marvel for providing us with an advanced copy of the comic for review purposes.

SDCC 2014: Marvel Takes Back Star Wars

Just as expected, the Marvel Cup O’Joe Panel at San Diego Comic-Con gave us our first real look at what Marvel will be doing once they take back the Star Wars license in January.

First up, (and to me, the most exciting!) we’ll be getting a miniseries titled Star Wars: Princess Leia with script by Mark Waid and with art by Terry Dodson.  The first issue will be released in March.



We’re also getting two ongoings of which is the first is the expected ‘Star Wars‘.  That will have Jason Aaron on script and John Cassaday on art.  The first issue hits in January and will feature our usual suspects amongst the main cast.


And finally, there will also be a Star Wars: Darth Vader ongoing series written by Kieron Gillen with art by Salvador Larroca.  (Note that the cover below is by Adi Granov.)  The first issue will be released in February 2015.


The two ongoing series will take place concurrently as they will back up after the Battle of Yavin.  Apparently the Vader series picks up right after Vader’s fighter goes spinning into space while Star Wars picks up two weeks later.  Jordan White will be the editor for all three books.

One of the questions at the panel did ask whether we’d be seeing Expanded Universe characters in the comics and the answer is that it is up to the Lucasfilm Story Group.  Apparently we will also see Boba Fett at some point but it’s a tricky time period.

The Official Site has interviews up with all three writers of the new books.

As for other questions from the panel, someone asked if characters from the old Marvel comics might show up.  The answer was that Jason Aaron will try but Jordan White might stop him.  The Marvel crew found Patton Oswalt’s Star Wars pitch hilarious but don’t think they have the rights to make that into a comic.  Also apparently Axel Alonso is trying to make ‘The Punisher Kills The Star Wars Universe’ a thing that happens.