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New Comic Book Day: Reviewing Darth Vader & The Ghost Prison #1

My ties to Star Wars run deep. I was born at the end of 1977, the year George Lucas’ movie debuted into theaters and exploded into the national cultural consciousness. Growing up in the 1980s, a young Star Wars fan could collect a line of action figures as well as a series of comic books released by Marvel, and I voraciously pursued both.

I still hang on to a few of the relics from those days. Walk into my attic, and you can find the Ewok village playset and Millenium Falcon (complete with hologram chessboard!—holograms not included) that were released with the action figures. Peruse my bookshelf, and you’ll find not one but two (two!) trilogies of books detailing the early adventures of Han Solo and Chewbacca.

But, somewhere along the way, my passion for the Star Wars franchise began to diminish as the number of products related to the Star Wars brand increased. I liked the prequel trilogy of movies well enough, but by the time that the “Clone Wars” cartoon debuted, it felt like the mythology that brought us Jedi and Wookies was being strip-mined. Factor in the onslaught of books, comic books and video games available, and the Star Wars universe all of a sudden looks mighty crowded with the addition of a slew of other heroes and villains.

Once Gonzogeek started reviewing titles from the Dark Horse Comics publishing house, however, I decided to give Star Wars comics another try. I’ve been less than enthralled with the “Dawn Of The Jedi” mini-series currently taking place—which took potentially rich source material and instead has produced an often-tedious product. Today, Dark Horse releases its latest mini-series related to the Star Wars universe, titled “Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison”, set not long after Episode III and the Empire’s conquest of the galaxy.

And I’m here to tell you, it’s worth checking out for the discerning and long-time Star Wars fan. Vader’s in the title, but he’s not the central character of the book. Makes sense: “Random Star Wars Cadet and the Ghost Prison” doesn’t have quite the ring. Choosing an as-yet unknown narrator for this series was a smart choice, however, as it brings the reader inside the perspective of someone who not only is part of the Empire, but believes in the new Imperial regime. It’s a reminder that, in all cases, history is written by the winning side.

The result is a well-drawn, easy-to-follow story that provides a tantalizing cliffhanger while revealing who will play the role of the villain in this unique series where the traditional bad guys from Star Wars lore find themselves as a protagonist. Definitely check it out.

Just don't ask me to explain what the Ghost Prison mentioned in the title has to do with what happenss in this issue.

OTHER NEW RELEASES FROM DARK HORSE, AVAILABLE TODAY!

Dark Horse Presents #12

Mind MGMT #1

Resident Alien #1

Ragemoor #3

Orchid #7

The Guild: Fawkes


 
Posted in: Gonzo
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