Star Wars: Lando

Comic Heroes - - Comics We Rate -

Re­viewed: Is­sues 1-4

Writer: Charles Soule

Artist: Alex Maleev

Pub­lisher: Marvel

For­mat: 5-is­sue minis­eries

This could eas­ily have been the weak link in Marvel’s ev­er­ex­pand­ing Star Wars line. A fiveis­sue minis­eries about the lothario gam­bler and busi­ness­man, set be­fore his orig­i­nal in­tro­duc­tion in The Em­pire Strikes Back? Sure, we’ve al­ways known he has a che­quered past, but against the high-stakes ac­tion and in­trigue of the reg­u­lar Star Wars, Darth Vader and Princess Leia books, it risked seem­ing small fry.

We were wrong about that. Lando and Lobot (you know, his bald cy­borg pal from Em­pire) take on “one last job...” in an at­tempt to square their debts with an alien gang­ster. The mis­sion in­volves steal­ing a star­ship from an ap­par­ently un­manned Im­pe­rial out­post. It’s all go­ing smoothly un­til they dis­cover that the ship is the prized pos­ses­sion of the Em­peror him­self…

Soule’s script does a good job of grad­u­ally re­veal­ing things. It’s still a com­par­a­tively low-stakes story – there are no plan­ets at risk from Im­pe­rial mega-weapons here – but #4 has fun with the no­tion of Sith arte­facts be­ing prized collectables and that the Jedi have al­ready be­gun slid­ing into myth. The fact that the old Ex­panded Uni­verse is gone and the new books and comics are now set­ting the rules adds some real weight. Sure, we know these char­ac­ters aren’t go­ing to die, but what se­crets of the Sith might we dis­cover in the com­ing is­sues?

Suit­ably stylish

The di­a­logue feels au­then­tic. And how fun – and tragic – that Lobot gets so much to say here. It’s clear early on that this is the story that will leave him vir­tu­ally mute.

The hero here, how­ever, is Alex Maleev. His scratchy, shad­owy art and Paul Mount’s psy­che­delic colour pal­ette are quite a con­trast to the more straight­for­ward and cin­e­matic ap­proach taken on the main Star Wars book. They per­fectly suit the murkier ar­eas of the galaxy that this book is ex­plor­ing, and it’s grat­i­fy­ing that Marvel isn’t im­pos­ing a sin­gle house style for its Star Wars range. Will Salmon

“The old ex­panded uni­verse is gone. might what se­crets we dis­cover?”

Not the old blaster un­der the sheets...!

The gov­er­nor has an un­usual of­fice desk.

Nice place, un­less you’re ago­ra­pho­bic.

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