Writer: Jason Aaron / Artist: John Cassaday, Laura Martin (Cover) / Marvel Comics
So, the first few issues of Star Wars set the perfect standard for what a SW book is under Marvel’s rule. Jason Aaron and John Cassaday got the series, taking place after the first movie, off to a fast paced energetic start that had us die-hards remembering why we fell in love with this universe in the first place. Can this dynamic duo keep the same energy going into a new chapter of this series?
Issue #4 picks up right after Han, Luke and Leia’s narrow escape from the almost botched attack on Cymoon 1. Although, there’s a degree of debate over what the Alliance’s next move against the Empire, Aaron also takes a look at Luke dealing with his wounded ego after his little run-in with Darth Vader. With all the mythology surrounding the Skywalker name, it’s easy to forget that it really all started with a nebbish farm boy who was unsure of himself. Also, I cannot get enough of Aaron’s Darth Vader. I mean, he steals the show in a way we haven’t seen since the original trilogy. The villain we all know and love was mysterious, didn’t answer probing question and only has one directive: “Do what Papa Palpatine wants or die.” The Vader I grew up with didn’t have all these conflicted emo feelings, he wasn’t good looking and he didn’t pout longingly into the fucking distance like a love interest from Sweet Valley High. Do you hear me, Hayden Christensen? Meanwhile, John Cassaday is at the top of his game as usual. There was a lot of exposition in this issue, but Cassaday pulled off the necessary gravitas most of this issue deserved.
Bottom Line: A big change in pace but well scripted and well drawn enough that you can appreciate its necessity. Still the strongest book of Marvel’s SW line. 9 out of 10.