Script: Tim Siedell
Art: Gabriel Guzman
Colors: Michael Atiyeh
Lettering: Michael Heisler
Cover Art: Felipe Massafera
The creative team’s one-shot like stories continue with this issue, but the main setting of the story may finally have been reached where the last issue had me wondering if we’d ever get there. The cooperation of the writing and art is the biggest treat this month with the team’s respect for comics fully demonstrated.
Unlike previous issues, Siedell leaves us knowing we’ll soon be right back to this same planet and scenario next month. I think the focus of this miniseries has finally been discovered unless Siedell throws one amazing curve ball next month. This issue shows one horrible mission that costs the Imperials a victory—as noted on the first page—but in the end gives our protagonist one incredible boost closer to his ultimate goal. The hardships that fall upon the Imperials are ones we as fans are all familiar with and make jokes about, and Siedell respects that and throws it in for a good chuckle.
One fulfilling aspect of the writing in this issue is Siedell’s understanding of the Sith. Whereas other areas of Star Wars make me believe Sith are used as “cartoon” villains for the Jedi to take down, Siedell knows how deep the Sith are, and this is highlighted on the final pages of the issue. Commander Hock Malsuum may have a goal he wants to reach within the ranks of the Empire, but the Sith have their own ideas as well, and they will test him without him knowing it. This is how you know someone understands the ideals of a Sith from Darth Bane’s teachings.
The art continues to dazzle me, and a recent discussion in social media brings even more respect to this creative team. More often in this and the last issue, Gabriel Guzman’s art has driven the story more than the narrator. That is the key part of comics storytelling, a part that I haven’t always noticed or appreciated. Siedell knows this very well, and Guzman capitalizes on it equally well. This isn’t any better illustrated (pun intended) than on a page halfway through with nothing but art and one sound effect telling the story, though one more sound effect may have made me not miss something the first time through.
Overall, this team understands the medium and seem to finally be heading toward the purpose of the miniseries. Though I may fear this story will fade out at the end, I know I’ll be told it in an exciting way, which, sometimes, is more important than anything else in entertainment.
Advanced Review Copy (ARC) courtesy of Dark Horse. All staff members can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.