Script: Randy Stradley
Art: Douglas Wheatley
Colors: Dan Jackson
Lettering: Michael Heisler
Cover Art: Benjamin Carre
In the penultimate chapter of Star Wars: Dark Times—A Spark Remains, we end where we started, leaving the conclusion open for all-out action. The creative team spends this issue setting up for next month’s finale, but this issue doesn’t reveal much more than what we already know.
Randy Stradley used this issue for two things: to remind the reader of everything that’s happened before and to have all the pieces lined up for the conclusion. For the first thing, Stradley included something like this before in this miniseries. Through another character this time around, we were told of what Dass Jennir has done to lead up to this moment, which we all know, but the point was to drive home the idea of how Jennir has been a continuing practitioner of what it means to be a Jedi. Others have been used as examples of those lost along the way, like Hudorra and Sahdett, and Hudorra’s reflections drive this point home as well in the pages of this issue. When you finish the issue, you’ll know why these viewpoints were told, but it felt really heavy and direct. Stradley didn’t want you to reach the end of the issue without knowing this, but if you don’t realize it early on, then you must not have been paying attention. For the second thing, Stradley leaves us where issue one started, so now there’s only one way to go: forward.
The issue didn’t have much action in it, so Douglas Wheatley didn’t get to have a lot of fun with explosions, fights, and the Force–though the last one played more of a role than I initially thought. Wheatley illustrates each character in every panel flawlessly, leading to lots of nice close-ups for this group of heroes. With the flashbacks, Wheatley does get to include some action, but without consecutive panels, it’s just not the same. However, he captures each of those events in the most epic of fashion, so there’s lots of great “stills” with Dass Jennir and the crew of the Uhumele. The best panel, though, is the splash at the end of the issue which says it all. Readers of past reviews and from hearing me talk about my least favorite alien races will understand that my biggest frustration is also captured in that final page, but maybe this is the first step in changing my views on a certain alien race.
Like I’ve said before, this issue will work much better when it’s grouped with the other four in the trade collection, but it does do a better job of a stand alone than the other times I’ve mentioned this point. Stradley does a great job leaving nothing but what happens next left for the next issue, but he seemed to spend too much time on driving one final plot point home this time around. Wheatley is always a delight to see his work, and if it’s not captured for you on the final page, surely you’ll see it in another panel here. Next, the miniseries finale!
Advanced Review Copy (ARC) courtesy of Dark Horse. All staff members can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.