Written by Alexander Freed
Art by Marco Castiello and Andrea Chella
Darth Vader has been sent to the planet of Valkin to quell a Jedi rebellion in an effort to purge the galaxy of the last remaining Jedi. Once there, Vader discovers that this will be no easy task.
I like this book, I wish I could say that I loved it based on its awesome premise, but I did like it. The idea of Vader hunting down his former order mates in the infancy of the Empire is a great idea, but with only two issues for the series, there is little room for a broader scope of storytelling. This book is direct and to the point. Now that’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just that there is no room to explore other terrain here, such as maybe one of these Jedi realizing that Vader and Anakin Skywalker are one and the same. What we do get is a pretty good story on its own, and some pretty excellent moments, such as Vader using the Force to manipulate the heart of a captured Jedi, as well as Vader using the Force to make sure a rebel fighter can’t toss a live grenade. There were also some interesting tidbits of Vader’s character on display, such as the fact that whenever he talks he’s terrifying, which could be the reason he doesn’t talk much. One thing this book definitely does right is selling the brutality that is Darth Vader, we got more then a few of those trademark Vader moments that make us love the guy.
Imperial security officer, Major Namada, is narrating the book. I did like her character, especially her naivety concerning the Jedi and Order 66, but she tends to fall a little flat. Her dialogue is a bit boring and given that we only will get two books here, it seems there isn’t much area for character development like we got through Ghost Prison’s proxy narrator, Laurita Tohm.
The art didn’t really set me on fire either. Though it’s not bad or anything, it didn’t do anything to wow me. The panels of the aforementioned Jedi prisoner’s heart were pretty sick and nicely done, but there was never that eye-popping moment I was hoping for. The little details seem to have gone neglected here, like vague facial expressions. Also, something about the way Vader was drawn just seemed a little off to me; I think I was spoiled by the sweeping visuals and Vader depictions in Ghost prison. Just like the story, the art didn’t turn me off, but it didn’t make this book a must read either.
Overall this was a decent read, but I think it suffers from just not having enough room to play. I think a story that could potentially have a lot of magnitude being cramped into a two issue mini series was a mistake. It also seems like there was a lot crammed into this one issue, which made the story also feel rushed, it could’ve used some more time to develop. If you pick this book up you probably won’t be asking for a refund, but you also won’t feel like it was the great read you’d be hoping for.
2.5 out of 5 nerds
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