Script: J.W. Rinzler
Art: Mike Mayhew
Colors: Rain Beredo
Lettering: Michael Heisler
Cover: Nick Runge
Variant Covers: Jan Duursema and Douglas Wheatley
I love a good alternate universe story. The Infinity comics of the Original Trilogy are among my favorite stories. What we have in The Star Wars is the first issue in a new alternate universe based on George Lucas 1974 rough draft of the movie we all know and love.
The book opens with a crawler text, giving us backstory that is somewhere between what we now know as Revenge of the Sith and the original A New Hope. A Great Rebellion has wiped out the Jedi-Bendu warriors, the one time personal bodyguards of the Emperor. They have been hunted down and killed by the Knights of the Sith. Proof that Lucas and company never throw away an idea.
J.W. Rinzler is credited as the writer here, but this book is pure George Lucas. All of the dialogue reads like George Lucas dialogue. It is all the best and the worst of what we know as George Lucas’ writing. It’s very hard to discuss the writing of the story here because I don’t know where Lucas ends and Rinzler begins. But I do find it interesting that only Rinzler is credited as the writer and not George Lucas.
Another hurdle in discussing this book is it’s very premise. It is a rough draft, an incomplete work. Anyone who has done any kind of creative work will recognize the signs of a rough draft here. It’s a complete story, but it’s lacking a polish. I have a hard time seeing this being published if it was it’s own unique entity and not a chapter in the creation of the Star Wars saga. That’s not to say it’s bad, it’s good, just not something I can see modern editors releasing without some more revisions.
Mike Mayhew’s art and Rain Beredo’s colors create a bright, crisp and very Flash Gordon look. Some very cool retro designs are thrown in, making this story feel like it is from the same era as the serials that inspired it. Although some of the character designs are a little too similar to each other. Kane Starkiller and General Luke Skywalker both look very similar to each other and with similar names I found myself having to reread sections to make sure I knew who was who.
If anything that is the one major complaint against this book is that it has taken all the elements that we know and taken them apart and assembled them in a different order. We recognize items but they have taken on a completely new meaning.
Like Yoda said, we must unlearn what we have learned about Star Wars to enjoy The Star Wars.
Advanced Review Copy (ARC) courtesy of Dark Horse. All staff members can be contacted at email@example.com.