Monday, September 24, 2012

Extra! Extra! Star Wars Comics Edition

Sorry this is a bit late!

This post is about the best Star Wars comic series. Don't forget about the coveted 5th slot, the (supposedly) best of the selected five (... the other four are arbitrarily placed).

Jedi vs Sith
This run embodies what Star Wars is to a lot of people: simply put, Jedi fighting Sith. Fortunately, there is plenty of that, though there are a few narratives worked into the story. It is the end of the New Sith Wars, which takes place on the war torn planet of Ruusan.

The most interesting, to me, was the story of Darth Bane. While it doesn't completely mesh, it does reflect the ending of the first Darth Bane novel, Path of Destruction, which is one of the better Star Wars novels (... which I might just talk about in a week or two!). This end of this battle is when the Sith "Rule of Two" is instituted.

I rate the series a 7/10.

Issues: 1-6

I love this series, even if it isn't always stellar. The setting is during the "Legacy" era, several generations removed from the films. The protagonist is a spice addicted bounty hunter, Cade Skywalker, the last remaining relative of Luke Skywalker.

It is an interesting setting -- the galaxy is at war again. The Sith (following the new Rule of One) have taken over the galaxy from the Empire (a nicer-ish Empire than the movies) and is now trying to wipe them off the face of the galaxy.

The Jedi, once again, are on the brink of extinction. The focus shifts from several characters, all of which are interesting and unique. The series sometimes flags from uninteresting arcs, but they are short enough. Other times, too many characters are juggled, leaving some not as fleshed out. Even so, it is an interesting read at the least. I've almost finished the series, but I'm willing to rate it an 8/10 as it stands.

Issues: 1-50, War 1-6

Shadows of the Empire
I know Shadows of the Empire came up last week, but this specific comic book is interesting because it does NOT tell the same story as either the novel or the game. Instead, it follows what other characters, specifically Boba Fett and the other bounty hunters, are doing during the same time frame.

In conjunction with the novel (and game, if you can stomach it -- it's hard!), the story is very fleshed out and gives a really interesting looks at some of the less seen characters in the Star Wars movies.

The sequel, Shadows of the Empire: Evolution, mainly follows Guri. It's not as interesting, but does expand on a few Extended Universe (aka Non-Movie) characters.

This series gets an 8/10, though it is lent some support from the other projects.

Issues: 1-6

Dark Empire II
Let me first note that this is a nostalgia piece for me, and that I have yet to read Dark Empire I. This is the series that first introduced me to the Star Wars Extended Universe and showed me worlds and characters outside of the films.

The story follows Luke recruiting some of the first new Jedi, Hand and Leia going having their third child, and the reborn Emperor Palpatine (the old guys spirit in a new clone body) generally trying to screw all this up.

These events are after the movies, but the Empire isn't down and out just yet. Its an interesting story with interesting art, though the story would probably be better served by reading the first arc... 7/10 as it stands.

Issues: 1-6

Knights of the Old Republic
A comic series based on one of my favorite video games!!! Well, not quite. These issues take place before (and a little during) the war that permeates the Knights of the Old Republic games (1 and 2, NOT the MMO).

These stories follow the worst Jedi apprentice (and all around unlucky guy) Zayne Carrick. The major arc that kicks things off comes from Zayne walking in on his Jedi Masters killing all their Padawans. He flees, but the becomes a wanted criminal when he is framed.

He has to find out why these things have happened, clear his name, and then avenge his friends... And that's just the beginning. The supporting cast in the series is, for the most part, really well done. Towards the end, I feel that they dropped the ball with a few characters and giving us appropriate closure, but it's an interesting read all the way through. My major complaint would be the inconsistent art, which tends to bother me in any series that switches up artists a lot.

If you can get past that, however, you'll find that you begin to really enjoy the cast themselves, major plots be damned! The series gets an 8/10 for me, and is my favorite Star Wars series to date.

Issues: 1-50, War 1-5 (Note: The 5 War issues were pretty bad... Skippable bad, actually)

There are a TON of Star Wars comics that I will eventually get around to reading, though I have to be honest -- some are really... well, dis-interesting to me. Anything set during the prequel trilogy doesn't thrill me, and none of the MMO era series have been worth reading (from what I've read) either. The older stuff, however, I do intend to eventually hunt down.

For next week, I might do best Star Wars novels, though if things are getting too Star Wars-y, I'll hold off.

I'm still taking suggestions!!

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