Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Leroy Douresseaux on STAR WARS: JEDI – THE DARK SIDE #3


["Star Wars Central" review page is here.]

SCRIPT: Scott Allie
ARTIST: Mahmud Asrar
COLORS: Paul Mounts
LETTERS: Michael Heisler
COVER: Stéphane Roux
32pp, Color, $2.99

Star Wars: Jedi – The Dark Side is a recently launched Star Wars comic book series from Dark Horse Comics. It is set during “The Rise of the Empire” era, which is essentially the time period of the Star Wars prequel trilogy. This particular story takes place two decades before Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.

In Star Wars: Jedi – The Dark Side, the Jedi Council sends Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, his headstrong Padawan Xanatos, the beautiful Jedi Master Tahl, and the Padawan Orykan Tamarik (whose master is deceased) to the planet Telos IV. Their assignment is to quell the unrest caused by the mysterious death and possible assassination of High Priestess Liora.

As Star Wars: Jedi – The Dark Side #3 opens, Qui-Gon attempts to bring peace between Xanatos and his father, Lord Crion, the ruler of Telos IV. Father and son have a difficult relationship, made even more difficult by Crion’s pride and Xanatos’ stubborn ways. Xanatos’ sister, Nason, also tries to bring her brother and father together, but she may be endangering herself. Meanwhile, the dissidents on Telos IV grow bolder, and the mysterious Jedi figure that may be behind the planet’s troubles is revealed to Qui-Gon,

Writer Scott Allie has turned Star Wars into a high-quality court drama and conspiracy thriller. This is more like a summer potboiler prose novel than a comic book. Artist Mahmud Asrar does his best work in depicting the Jedi in action. His art captures the jumping, flipping, cart-wheeling Jedi of The Phantom Menace in still pictures that don’t lose the energy of the moving image originals. I didn’t think that I’d like this, but I’m actually looking forward to more, especially because Allie presents a richly characterized version of Qui-Gon.


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