The Expanded Universe in 2011: Comics

2011 could very well be the year of Star Wars comics. With a proposed schedule of eight new series from Dark Horse (including new arcs of existing series), the celebration method for 20 years of Dark Horse publishing Star Wars material seems simple: Give the fans comics galore. While four different comics from last year will continue in 2011, four new ones will begin. EUCantina gives you a look ahead at what to expect from each series. Look for the final part of this series of articles later this week, when we preview Star Wars games. John Jackson Miller has the pleasure of creating the first Star Wars items to be published in 2011 for both comics and novels. On January 12, we will see the continuation of Knight Errant: Aflame with the fourth issue, and at the end of this month, the tie-in novel for the series will be released. The first arc will wrap up in February, closing the five issue story that starts the adventure of Kerra Holt, the young Jedi abandoned in Sith space. Her survival is key, but that doesn't make her idle. Already, Kerra is looking to leave her mark on the dark region, even if she has to do it alone. If you want to learn more about Knight Errant, listen to EUCast's interview with John Jackson Miller. January is a packed month for comics. On the 26, the first new series of the year begins, when Haden Blackman tells a mysterious tale about Darth Vader. There will be five issues of Darth Vader and the Lost Command, with the series ending in May. In the series, “It’s Darth Vader, the darkest Lord of the Sith, at his best — and worst!” Any Aliens vs. Predators fans out there should enjoy the art of Rick Leonardi that will feature in this comic. Follow Vader as he travels to the Ghost Nebula, in search of the son of Grand Moff Tarkin. Dark Horse has also revealed that one of their special anniversary covers will be available as a variant for the first issue. On the same day that a new series begins, another draws closer to what could be a final ending. John Ostrander and Jan Duursema will continue the end of the Legacy story. Legacy - War 2 will hit shelves on the 26, leaving only four more issues in the series. As the publisher's summary says: "If Cade Skywalker was ever going to run from his legacy, now would be the time!" The conclusion of Legacy - War will be published in May. The recent reveals of cover art and summaries have fans excited, with anticipation mounting to see the entire plot tie together. One of the most anticipated comic book series of the year will launch in April. Fans have been clamoring for a third Crimson Empire, and this past summer, their wish was granted. The announcement was made at Celebration V by Randy Stradley himself, much to the delight of the audience, and the numerous fans following the convention online. The series will be penned by Stradley and Mike Richardson, with art by Paul Gulacy. Very few details have been give about the sequel to Crimson Empire and Crimson Empire II: Council of Blood (the full title of the series isn't even known), but the likely conclusion to the saga is sure to feature many of the favorite characters from the first two series. Fans may recall a false alarm in 2008, when Richardson announced that work had begun on the third part, but Stradley denied it, stating that the series wasn't even in Dark Horse's publishing schedule. Now, after a decade long wait, the story of Kir Kanos can continue in a new 6-issue tale. The release dates of the other continuing and new series are still unknown. Existing series will release new arcs. Dark Times is expected to pick up again some time this year, along with Invasion. Blood Ties will release a new mini-series focusing on another pair of relatives in the Star Wars universe. Meanwhile, various trade-paperbacks will be released, including The Old Republic: Blood of the Empire (Volume I on March 15), Invasion Volume 2: Rescues (April 27), and Blood Ties: A Tale of Jango and Boba Fett (May 18). There will also be a special edition of Dark Empire, which will help raise money for artist Cam Kennedy, who is sadly losing his eyesight.

About the Author

Austin Blankenship is the webmaster of EUCantina. He is a host of our official podcast, EUCast, and also founded our sister website, SoloSound.net. Austin helped turn EUCantina from a forum into a website in 2007, and continues to operate the site and the EUC social media accounts. Austin works as a librarian in a small town above Atlanta, Georgia.