Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Star Wars: Darth Vader #16
Gillen, Larroca & Delgado
“Darth Vader” provides another entertaining read that mixes some plot development, some action and a little bit of a longer view on the tensions between Vader and The Emperor. Coming out of a big crossover it probably is a good idea to make this issue as new reader friendly as possible which is exactly what it is. However, for the reader that’s been with the entire series they are going to find a lot more of the same plot points and drama as in previous issues. As a result, I found this to be a very average read. It is exactly what you expect from a Darth Vader comic and nothing out of the ordinary.
The book opens with Vader providing a tiny recap of the last crossover to The Emperor. On the one hand, the tension is welcome. The Emperor pressing his will onto Vader and filling him doubt and a touch or paranoia is a good thing. On the other hand, if seeing his son near death at the hands of The Emperor was the reason he came back from the dark side then do these little sessions of Vader not trusting The Emperor cheapen that act? Did Vader have the death of the Emperor in mind for a long time and was just waiting for the right spot? To show a greater character arc it would seem that Vader was bad as they come and in line with The Emperor until he saw Luke going down and then he turned it around. It’s interesting, but I guess I would prefer a scene with The Emperor that doesn’t put Vader’s loyalty to the test for once.
Vader is re-dispatched to the planet he just left. There he must support his newly crowned queen against local rebels. Vader uses some of his weapons to crush the rebellion, but it undermines the queen’s authority. This brings up the question as to why the Empire doesn’t just station someone there to run the place. After all, he threatened Lando with occupation during the Empire Strikes Back and Bespin didn’t seem to provide anything vital to the Empire in the way that this planet seems to.
The artwork is a high point to the comic. With some battles and some nice splash pages you get a grand visual in the comic book. The comic seems to depict The Emperor and Vader very well as they look very much like their movie counterparts. Overall, the comic has an event scale to the artwork, which helps the story.
“Darth Vader” opens a new arc with an issue that is very new reader friendly. The comic gives some setup from The Emperor, it provides some action and a little bit of Vader being intimidating. It’s a solid read. However, there isn’t anything new in here. In fact, a lot of the plot seems like it could easily fit in with Lando and Bespin had Bespin been a resource that the Empire needed. The comic is an average read, but if you are looking to jump onto this comic then this is a perfect issue for that and there is something to be said for that. Give is a shot.
3 out of 5 Geek Goggles
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