Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Mike Deodato
Colorist: Frank Martin Jr.
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
Cover Artist: Mark Brooks
It’s the penultimate issue of Marvel’s Vader Down crossover event. Princess Leia is facing down Darth Vader, but an unexpected new enemy has entered the fight. Chewbacca is fighting the wookiee bounty hunter Black Krrsantan, and the murderous droids Triple Zero and BeeTee are trying to capture Luke Skywalker.
The evil cyborg Karbin has shown up and brought down the Imperial hammer even harder on the Rebel forces. I still can’t get behind the design of Karbin, it’s just too ridiculous to take seriously. If he wasn’t a Mon Cal I might have a different view on the character. It is interesting to see a species that we had always counted among the good guys be an evil character. Still looks more silly than menacing though.
Karbin pulls his best General Grievous impression when fighting Vader, separating his arms to give him 4 lightsabers. My first thought here was that Vader could use the same skills he used when fighting Grievous, but then I remembered that Anakin/Vader never fought Grievous except the one time. Their fight doesn’t end in this issue, but it’s clear that Vader doesn’t consider Karbin to be much of a threat.
Jason Aaron continues to write a fun Star Wars story. The real drama of the story surrounds Darth Vader and Princess Leia, but we do get some great action with Chewie’s fight and Luke’s limited visit to the former site of the Jedi temple. Mike Deodato’s art keeps the action moving while Frank Martin’s colors keep each fight and location looking differently.
This issue is essentially all fight scenes. We open with Vader and Karbin, then cut to Chewie and Krrsantan, get a little bit of Luke and then the issue closes out. The Vader fight is by far the most interesting one. The wookiee battle is good, but nowhere near the drama of Vader. None of the battles are resolved here, we have to wait until the finale in Darth Vader #15 to get the resolution on these fights and the story itself.