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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Dark Side of the Horse VII

Sad to say this is most likely to be my last Dark Side of the Horse. Keeping up with the various Star Wars comics is taxing and not easy on my pocket or the generosity of Dark Horse. You’ll note that the books I’m covering below are a few, quite a few, volumes behind as I have not even wrapped up Vector which was a 2008 event. That being said I’ll of course still tackle Dark Horse properties, Blood + for example and look for movie tie-ins and other hot items, but for now lets take a look at the (possibly) final installment of Dark Side of the Horse. Who knows, things are not always as they seem and while the Sith may have seemed exterminated, ditto for the Jedi, they can and have come back in full force … read what you may from this …

 Knights of the Old Republic #30Knights of the Old Republic #30
Zayne is up to his neck in trouble as he’s captured after obtaining evidence of the stash of Sith artifacts which Lucien and his alliance is holding. Things are as bad as they seem as Zayne must face off with Master Feln, one of the conspirators with Lucien, who is plunging his own tribe into darkness along with himself. As the fight reaches its conclusion Feln is a victim of the rules of his tribe that brought him to power and now see his downfall. Zayne is quick to leave as yet another Master fades into history.

So this story is a continuation and the core is the fate of Feln, but overall the art is just not that great. For such a dark time, a dire conflict the colors are vivid and bright and the expression of each character, body proportions, it just takes away from what is a very intriguing storyline.

 Knights of the Old Republic # 31Knights of the Old Republic # 31
Zayne, having dealt with Feln, now shifts his focus to a return to Corsuant and a reveal of the Sith artifacts which Lucien is keeping hidden from the Jedi Council. One little problem, the fleet waiting for Zayne and crew around the planet, so just how to get planet side? The tricks of the trade, a bit of starship slight of hand and Zayne is on the ground ready to reveal what he knows and take down Lucien and his alliance once and for all … but an unexpected host is waiting for them as they leave their ship.

The art continues in its comical manner as stated above and the story continues to progress at a much more rapid pace as Zayne will come face-to-face with Lucien. The best thing about this volume of KOTOR is the anticipation for what is to come. Zayne vs. Lucien is what drives this story, Lucien’s goals and all that was taken from Zayne because of a prophecy.

 Knights of the Old Republic #32Knights of the Old Republic #32
The tricks have been used, now it time to put up against Lucien. Plans begin to unravel and truths are revealed. The alliance, the covenant has its own little dirty secrets and of course when dealing with evil, evil turns upon itself no matter how right those taking the actions may be.

Finally the fight we want and more plot twist. Readers, if you’ve followed the story this far you will not be upset at what you get, which is why I’m so vague above. As for the art it’s excellent, more realistic and helps to really set the tone and mood to what is should be, quite a fine chapter.

 Star Wars: Rebellion #15, Vector Part 7Star Wars: Rebellion #15, Vector Part 7
Vector continues as Luke and Han take a team to an isolated planet to investigate a strange presence. The planet just happens to be one containing an infected Celeste, stranded right where Vader left her 20 some odd years earlier. Let’s just say time has not softened our infected Jedi and as she encounters Luke that little Sith voice in her head convinces her to confront Luke.

Vector is by far one of the most enjoyable comic experiences I’ve read since … Marvel’s Inferno of the last century. Luke’s encounter with Celeste is tasty and seeing how she’s changed is good storytelling. The art is excellent, characters recognizable and everything sets up for a larger clash in volume 16.

 Star Wars: Rebellion #16, Vector Part 8Star Wars: Rebellion #16, Vector Part 8
Vector part 8 continues the fight between Luke and Celeste as Han and the other very infect able humans get to their ship only to be separated from Luke and Leia. The talisman decides to go after a new, potentially more powerful and bendable host only to be stopped by Celeste. As Luke and Leia make their escape Celeste manages to obtain a ship and gives a quick fly-by hello to an old heavy breathing buddy.

Celeste is the star of this book as her challenges and choices trump those of both Luke and Leia. She makes a very difficult decision and her little hello to Vader is just priceless. The art is excellent yet again and the story set in Vector continues.

Star Wars: Legacy #25Star Wars: Legacy #25
Their nest discovered Cade, Syn and the rest of their friends make their way to a hidden Jedi Temple that Cade’s uncle helped establish. Little to our bounty hunters realize but they are being tailed by a group of Imperial Knights, sold out by one of their own. As they enter the hidden temple Syn comes face-to-face with his father’s killer and must himself decide the best course or vengeance.

By far Legacy has the best art of any comic on this list. All three volumes are very well drawn, detailed showing great emotion, darkness, humor and proper action that the Star Wars legacy deserves. That goes for all three Legacy comics covered here so I won’t repeat. The story is a bridge to bigger things. The there are alliances formed against Darth Krayt and the stage is getting set for some all out action.

 Star Wars: Legacy #26Star Wars: Legacy #26

Syn encounters the Jedi who felled his father only to be presented with the truth of who his father really was. Cade also must fight with a former friend to prove his true intentions as the new Jedi, Imperial alliance kicks in it’s Cade who decides to take the fight to the Sith.

Short summary, but great story points. We’ve got Syn with some major revelations and Cade taking the role of a leader, not a Jedi, but one with power who must face and destroy Krayt if there is to be hope for the galaxy after what befell the Mon-Calamari (SPELLING). This is one storyline that is going to be epic on a very Star Wars level.

 Star Wars: Legacy #27Star Wars: Legacy #27
A side-story as Darth WyYrlok take a journey to seek greater power and confront the Spirit of Darth Andeddu, a long deceased Sith. Their fight is on they physical and to a grander scale the mental plain. The living will survive but at what price?

The price is one hell of a sweet one-shot side story where two Sith put their minds to the test. Not knowing much or really caring much about this particular Sith did not take away from the enjoyment of seeing two twisted mind go at it for domination of each other. A really good read that requires no ties to any prior story.

Overall these books have been great, especially Vector. Fans already know this and I’m just a bit sad that I’m so behind in these updates. Fortunately Dark Horse is really good about doing collected volumes so maybe I’ll start taking a look at those. See you on the flip side.

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