Review: Star Wars Volume 1: In The Shadow Of Yavin TPB
After the destruction of the Death Star, the Rebels are hounded by the Empire. Suspecting a spy in their ranks, Princess Leia forms a secret X-wing squadron—which includes Luke Skywalker—to expose the spy and find a safe home. Meanwhile, Han Solo and Chewbacca are sent on a covert mission! Collects Star Wars #1–#6 and Free Comic Book Day 2013.
The first six issues of Dark Horse’s newest Star Wars series have been collected into one convenient location. Star Wars Volume 1: In The Shadow Of Yavin is written by Brian Wood with art from Carlos D’Anda. Gabe Eltaeb provides colors with Michael Heisler handling letters. The first volume also includes The Assassination of Darth Vader from the Free Comic Book Day issues by Brian Wood with art by Ryan Odagwa. Eltaeb and Heisler handle their regular duties for the short story as well. So if you missed Wood’s Star Wars the first time around, should you dive in to the trade?
The events of the story take place shortly after Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope. The rebel alliance took down the Death Star, but they are still losing the war. Their base has been destroyed and it’s up to Leia to find a suitable home world for the rebel alliance. She is tasked with forming a top secret squadron of pilots to help carry out the mission. Security has been compromised and a mole is giving the Empire details on the alliance’s missions. Luke of course is one of the pilots chosen to help find the new base planet. You also have Han Solo and Chewbacca off on a mission of their own to get weapons and supplies for the Rebels. As you can guess, what is supposed to be a simple meet and exchange turns out to be something much more complex…and dangerous. On the Empire side of things we have Darth Vader trying to redeem himself after his failure at Yavin and the destruction of the first Death Star.
Wood writes a fantastic story. We know what happens in the end, but he makes you care more about how you get there and what the characters go through in the process. He is even able to make you forget about what happens in the other movies and think that the characters are in actual danger. That’s about as big of a compliment as you can give for a project like this. We know the rest of the story already. Wood makes you care less about getting from point A to Point B and more about exploring the characters and showing the struggle the Rebel Alliance is going through. Of course there are plenty of dogfights and Han solo blaster action as well. The series has a lot going on in the way of established Star Wars lore, but Wood is able to offers up something really new and fresh in a world that has been explored almost to death. D’Anda’s Art is stellar. The characters are slightly different from their movie counterparts of course, but they are pretty much spot on. Things are very detailed with all the ships and space stations. D’Anda offers up a worthy comic book counterpart to the fantastical worlds, creatures, and characters we see in the films themselves. Eltaeb’s colors are bright, shiny, and vibrant. Space is even made interesting. That’s sometimes a hard thing to pull off.
Bottom Line: Brian Wood offers up a fantastic new story firmly set in the Star Wars universe. There’s a lot here to love and even the most hardcore Star Wars fan will find few, if any, things to complain about. If you missed out on the first six issues when they were coming out monthly, you definitely want to check this one out. 4/5