The Chosen One. Dark Lord of the Sith. At one time, Jedi Knight. We have never witnessed Darth Vader being anything other than the favorite, the expected victor, the intimidating legend. Darth Vader #2 brings out an interesting concept and I am happy that Marvel decided to explore it.
THERE IS ALWAYS SOMETHING I CAN DO
If you recall from A New Hope, during the scene in which Vader chokes a General for the first time on screen, a man named Tagge is at the round table. He speaks just a few lines. In this adventure, Tagge has been promoted to the title of “Grand General,” taking on many of the roles held previously by the deceased Grand Moff Tarken. After Vader’s failure to protect the Death Star and the events of Cymoon 1, the Emperor has lost faith in him.
At Palpatine’s command, Vader now reports to Tagge. Vader obliges for the time being, only to find out Tagge will also have an officer named Oon-Ai shadow Vader and report on every move he makes. Something tells me that Tagge’s sudden arrogance will spell an ugly end for him in a future story. Oon-Ai asks Vader about his communications with a Bounty Hunter named Boba Fett, but Vader deflects the question.
Vader leads a small platoon of Storm Troopers to reclaim a weapons cache that was stolen by Rebels. His droid is an Astromech droid that looks somewhat similar to R5-D4 from A New Hope, mixed in with some of the Astromechs you see wheeling in the halls of the Death Star. The battle plan doesn’t pan out as intended as a key part of that plan was a failure. Of course, Vader finds a way to get the job done. In the end, Oon-Ai was found to be a double agent, opening the way for Vader to threaten Tagge.
The art style is superb as always. Vader’s image is key and it is ideal from the detail found in his cape to his Lightsaber and the way it hangs on his belt. Tagge is also impressive, appearing just as he had in A New Hope. The approach to the story is also impressive, because of the different perspective and predicament we see Vader in.
Lastly, I enjoyed the droids that were apart of this story. Vader seems to have found a trustworthy, loyal companion in his Astromech unit. In addition, the Rebels utilized Droidekas, the deadly destroyers seen in The Phantom Menace. How they got their hands on them is unknown. This is one of the only times I can recall an author mixing material from the prequel trilogy with an original trilogy-based story line. It’s something so specific to the prequels, I really enjoyed the throwback. I think this should happen more, because the prequels get more flak than they deserve and Disney should continue to find ways to celebrate and integrate it into its new canon, be it movies, games, or books.
The fresh perspective is a welcomed addition, but I felt that the story did not progress as smoothly as it could have with this entry.
+ Vader is the underdog.
+ Fresh mix of prequel-era (Droidekas) and original trilogy era (General Tagge).
– Story progress could have been greater.
– No background on stolen supplies – possibly too concise.
Josiah LeRoy is Geekiverse’s Senior Editor. He can finally rest, knowing the Buffalo Sabres have their franchise Jack in the box.
Check out our reviews on past Marvel Star Wars comics: