Tag Archives: marvel comics

Out this week: Heir to the Jedi, Princess Leia #1

Heir to the Jedi (jacket)Tuesday brings us our first novel of the year, Kevin Hearne’s Heir to the Jedi. My review goes up tomorrow and fair warning: I was not impressed.

Wednesday sees us with yet another comic launch: Princess Leia #1. Marvel has posted a sketchbook from artist Terry Dodson.

Coming up, we have the A New Dawn paperback on March 31, and
William Shakespeare’s The Phantom of Menace (yes, it got a title change) on April 7.

Out this week: Star Wars #2

It feels like Marvel’s Star Wars #1 just came out (this may because I only read it last week) but here we are again, with Star Wars #2 in the shops (and online) on Wednesday. Like #1, this one does have a number of variant covers… Although not quite as many. Props to everyone who can actually keep track of them.

If you’re collecting the Star Wars #1 reprints, the second printing will also be in shops this week. It has a black background in place of white, and we learned today that the third printing will be red.

Also due later this month is Darth Vader #1 and #2, or so the solicitation leads me to believe. Presumably in different weeks, but we’ll see when the distribution lists come in!

Catching up with Marvel: April solicitations, reprints, and what can we do for more Leia?

Princess Leia #3 (Marvel)Marvel solicitations for April are out. (Hattip to ‏@DarthSpiriah.) It includes Kanan: The Last Padawan #1 (which has a little art peek at StarWars.com,) but the real curiosity may be Princess Leia #3 – or rather, the second woman on the cover. Some are suspecting it’s Winter, a Legends character it would make sense to bring back given that we know the miniseries is dealing with Alderaan, but I wouldn’t say no to a brand-new lady pilot. Either way, we’ll find out in April. UPDATE: She’s a new character.

And depite the million or so copies in circulation, Star Wars #1 is going back for a second and third printing. In CBR’s latest Axel’s In Charge Q&A, Marvel Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso talks a bit about Star Wars #1 and the line in general. On that note, Darth Vader #1 is looking like it’ll sell more than 200,000 copies.

There was a report from Bleeding Cool yesterday that a Lando Calrissian comic is in the works. It’s a nice idea, but don’t expect any announcements today, per Marvel editor Jordan D. White.

Meanwhile, on his Tumblr, White has answered a few Star Wars questions. Here’s one to be aware of – while the current Leia comic is a 5-issue miniseries, it could lead to an ongoing if sales are good enough. As for Mara Jade? “Only time will tell.” Waru, on the other hand, gets a pretty firm “nope.”

But for those hungry for more prequel era stories beyond Kanan, Jordan does say he has “a couple of ideas for series I think would fit really well there.”

Review roundup: Star Wars #1 does pretty well for itself

marvel-sw1Now that the million or so copies of Marvel’s Star Wars #1 have hit the comic books shops, let’s see what people are saying:

  • IGN: “There’s an emphatic “Give the people what they want!” feel to this issue, and the creative team certainly delivers.”
  • iDigitalTimes: “…the best character work is Princess Leia…” (spoilers)
  • /film:”Not only does Vader make a great dramatic entrance but theres a very cool tense sequence that feels ripped out of Homeland (this is a strong compliment) and Vader’s response is nothing short of bad ass.”
  • Nerdist: “Writer Jason Aaron perfectly captures the pacing, action, and humor of the original Star Wars in a way that a lot of the comics haven’t for a long time it seems.”
  • Jedi News: “The true test of any comic script is does it leave you longing for more, and I can’t imagine anyone reading this issue and not being absolutely compelled to pick up issue #2.”
  • Tosche Station: 4/5 – “At times, it was difficult to NOT hear the actors’ voices inside my head reading the lines.”
  • Big Shiny Robot (a double review from Bryan and myself): “It brings us to familiar territory while still feeling fresh.”
  • Coffee with Kenobi: “Reading “Star Wars” No. 1 is like watching a movie.”
  • EUCantina.net: “Marvel knew they had to make a big impression with their first Star Wars issue, and they have succeeded.”

Talking with the creators:

Marvel puts Star Wars comics up on comiXology, but…

marvel-comix

If you’re a digital comics fan, the news of the day is pretty big: Star Wars comics became available on comiXology today under new licensee Marvel. Most of the big publishers use comiXology for digital these days, but Dark Horse has stayed an outlier, maintaining their own app, so this is the first time these works have been available through the more popular service.

That’s all well and good – or at least, inevitable. This is the way the comics license works: All or nothing, no matter who actually produced the work.

Okay, this one is a touch ironic.

Okay, this one is a touch ironic.

But one thing: Everything you see in ‘Marvel’s’ Star Wars store is reusing old Dark Horse covers, sans Dark Horse logo. The only changes on any of them are a Marvel logo and the Legends banner. Other than those three things, they are using the Dark Horse covers verbatim.

And, honestly? It looks a bit crass.

It’s not the biggest issue in the fandom, and it’s certainly not without precedent – Dark Horse reprinted all the old Marvel stuff, probably several dozen times a piece. But they also started long before digital comics and the ability to publish several dozen collected editions at the drop of a hat. By the time digital came along, all the old Marvel stuff had Dark Horse covers ready to go.

I don’t expect Marvel to have artists whip up completely (mostly?) new covers for digital, the way they’re doing for print. But surely a quick general ‘Archive’ template and text treatment (Well, maybe two, given the omnibus layouts) would make this look a little less skeevy.

There’s nothing wrong with the Dark Horse covers, and certainly Lucasfilm owns the typography just as much as they do the art. I’m sure there are a lot of factors I’m unaware of here. I don’t even know if they have access to the original art (surely Lucasfilm does?) I don’t know Marvel’s staffing situation or the amount of time they had to throw this all together. And I certainly have no objections to Dark Horse’s big last minute sale: They produced most of it and lost the license to the biggest fish in the pond through no fault of their own – why not get in those last few sales?

But I know, as a fan – and not even a fan who Dark Horse showed much interest in catering to outside of a brief period in the ’90s – this just doesn’t look right to me. And for that matter, why is Marvel is putting up some of Dark Horse’s most popular Star Wars comics – Dark Empire, Legacy, etc. – it only a week before their first new comic even hits? An attempt to reach out to the rabid Dark Horse fans? Will it over-saturate the audience? Can you over-saturate the market for comics fans?

It all comes down to money, yes. Of course it does. And I’m sure Marvel and Lucasfilm made a nice chunk of cash today off all this, to go with their brand new 1 million record. I just wish they’d been a touch classier about it.