Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Star Wars: Dark Times – A Spark Remains #5 of 5
Dark Times Comics
Stradley, Wheatley & Jackson
The finale to the highly entertaining mini-series, “A Spark Remains”, is a fair but slightly disappointing read. Of the previous five or six arcs, this one was shaping up as the very best. After all, the story provided three Jedi conspiring to take down Vader, with one being revealed to be an agent of the Emperor. This issue was to be the final confrontation when Vader finally gets his Jedi. However, this particular issue simply left too many of the plot threads on the bench unused, which held this issue back. Ah what could have been. This is a good read but nothing that creeps in the stratosphere that’s labeled “greatness”.
As Vader storms the palace he sniffs out some of the traps. This creates a situation where his troops have been disposed of leaving Vader on his own. Vader uses the force to determine there are two Jedi, and not just one, on the premises. Vader is met by Hudorra and not Dass Jennir, the one he was expecting.
The duel between Hudorra and Vader is good but nothing you haven’t seen before. There are capes cut through, limbs loped off and sabers thrown through the air. The confrontation ends the only way it can end. Vader moves on, bent on finding Jennir.
Vader finds something unexpected by both Vader and the reader. This surprise is a good one but it also marks the turn in the comic where I found the issue disappointing. Left unused are some of the pieces that were creatively leveraged to set up this issue, such as Vader’s assassin to name one. The build up to this issue should have led to a lot more fighting and more bloodshed but instead the ending felt extremely anticlimactic.
Wheatley’s art is good but it is not his best in this series unfortunately. Specifically the duel scenes feel stiff and not as fluid as they should be and have been in this series in the past. While some of the pages show the stunning brilliance that is to be expected from Wheatley, too many do not. This is an above average visual story.
Dark Times is among the best of the Star Wars comics out there today. This mini-series is a very good one and there are a lot of interesting players involved in this series to make it that way. However, the ending leaves a lot to be desired. I’m not expecting mass death but I was expecting to see the pieces that were moved into position over four issues to be used, not ignored, in the fifth. This was very nearly a perfect series but an average ending denies that status.
3.5 out of 5 Geek Goggles