In Review: Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge #1

This is how to debut a new Star Wars series!

The covers: There are four different covers for you to find that shouldn’t require the help of Dok-Ondar. The Regular cover by Rod Reis has Han Solo and Chewbacca walking away from the Millennium Falcon accompanied by an Ithorian. Han spreads his arms wide as he’s obviously pleased by what he sees at Black Spire Outpost on Batuu. I’m a fan of Reis’s work and I’m always happy to see more of it. This has the two fan favorites surrounded by several familiar species of the Star Wars Universe and the background looks just like the photos of the soon-to-open attraction at Disneyland and Disneyworld. The Variant cover by Patch Zircher & Federico Blee has Han and Chewie looking into the maw of a Sarlacc, shown from its mouth’s point of view. This looks great and I love that Han looks fearful and Chewbacca howls in anger. The tendrils of the creature are reaching for the pair. I love this illustration and the colors are perfect. The image that was released some time ago is the Concept Design Variant cover by Karl Lindberg & Iain McCaig. This features Dok-Ondar, the dealer of illicit and expensive items at Black Spire Outpost. He looks fantastic, as does the small droid that accompanies him. His clothing is exceptionally cool. The final cover is the Attraction Variant cover by Richard Lim. This shows the Falcon from a distance as it sits in Black Spire Outpost. This illustration was created to give designers of the attraction a guide to creating the space at the Disney parks. This looks great and I’m going to have to track this down. Overall grades: All A

The story: Let me state that this was a ton of fun. Ethan Sacks does an incredible job in crafting the atmosphere of this location and in weaving Han and Chewie into the tale. The book opens with Remex walking down one of the many busy walkways of Black Spire Outpost, stopping to get something to drink, while teaching a young pickpocket a lesson. A rumble from above has him cursing the arrival of a First Order ship that could cost him his business. Within the ship, Lieutenant Agnon tells his troopers he can’t wait to find the Resistance agents hiding among the throng, burning it to the ground if needed. With the ship passing, Remex meets with Kendoh and Wooro whom he’s joining with to meet Dok-Ondar. They’ve brought enough credits to buy the Itorian’s attention, but are distracted by something near him which sparks the story of this issue. It involves Han and Chewie procuring the item that the dealer has in his possession. This has the heroes in classic form, going in with the best of intentions to make a quick profit and having the situation quickly spiral out of control, with the pair in a life and death struggle to survive on several fronts. I especially liked the creatures involved. The final two pages return to the present where the trio ask for something and are quickly told to get out. However, one of the threesome has left something behind that will cause trouble in the future. I loved the action, loved the new characters, and loved the new setting. Overall grade: A+

The art: The visuals on this book really capture the disreputable nature of the setting and the wild action that occurs on I’vorica Prime. Will Sliney did a great job on this book. The first page shows a busy corridor peopled with many familiar faces from the franchise, focusing on Remex as he makes his way forward. I like the subtle way the child is shown trying to pinch the man’s purse and how he’s dealt with. The final panel on the page is shown from a cool point of view to introduce the First Order ship on the partial double-paged spread on 2 and 3. Agnon and his troops look good, with me very curious about the leader’s lack of pupils. Kendoh and Wooro’s introduction has the reader looking up at the pair, making them seem very strong. Page 5 has Dok-Ondar make his first appearance and I like how he’s surrounded by objects of all kinds that he’s obviously willing to sell. The stance of the three characters at the bottom of the page changes how the reader thinks of their previous appearances. The next page transitions to the past to show the Falcon and her pilot and co-pilot. The heroes don’t look great on this page, but improve considerably after this and for the remainder of the issue. I love the design of Ooris and the characters that are working with him. Page 9 is fantastic: again, great point of view, and the creatures are spectacular. The reader will have the same reaction Han does at seeing them. The action that follows, and there’s a lot of it, is incredibly fluid, with characters fighting, leaping, falling, and running. I love the first panel on 11, followed by a great impact panel. The first panel on 12 is terrific, with the one that comes after it a great point of view. I loved the action on 14 and the character that stands alone at the bottom of the page. 15 has me standing and applauding because this character isn’t shown like this enough. WOW! The leap and fall on 17 is awesome. The fate of the antagonist on 18 is so enjoyable. There’s a neat transition between the second and third panel on the penultimate page. The final panel of the book is a great tease for troubles to come. Sliney’s art is something to savor. Overall grade: A

The colors: Dono Sánchez-Almara with Protobunker create this book’s colors and they direct the reader where to look in the detailed art. On the first page Remex is colored much more vividly than the backgrounds which are very pale. The red sound effect in the fourth panel is a good way to introduce the First Order’s ship. The grays and blacks of this ship have it instantly stand apart from the browns, tans, and greens below them; this ship simply does not belong at this location. The black orbs Agnon has for eyes has me curious about him. The dark oranges that end Page 5 make the creature within it much more threatening and it definitely captures the reader’s attention. I’vorica Prime’s flora has gorgeous greens, blues, and violets. This is a great contrast to the main setting that contains oranges, yellows, and sickly pinks for the bulk of this flashback tale. The blue outbursts used for weapons is electrifying. Many sound effects are in red during the action sequences to increase the frenzied events on the page. The blue sky background is beautiful throughout this setting. This is a great coloring job. Overall grade: A

The letters: This issue’s scene settings, droid speech, dialogue, sounds, Wookiee speech, screams, and yells are created by VC’s Travis Lanham. Because this is a new setting that’s going to appear in several forms of media, I really want to see all that I can, so I appreciate that Lanham is able to insert a lot of dialogue in some tiny panels without covering important elements of the visuals. I’m not liking the scene setting font, which looks blurry due to the coloring. They’ve looked better in other Star Wars books recently and I wish that Marvel would abandon this font. The dialogue is wispy looking, only giving the speakers power when it changes for yells and screams. The droid dialogue is in italics to visually show the speaker isn’t biological. Chewbacca’s dialogue is centered in most of his balloons, but these containers are wildly warped for no apparent reason, making them odd looking whenever he spoke. I did love all the sounds, especially from the threats and the Wookiee’s bowcaster sounded magnificent. Overall grade: B+

The final line: Give me more! I loved the new setting, new characters, and the inclusion of some classic faces involved in a job gone wrong. I want to learn more about this cast and would love to see more of this location. The visuals are highly detailed and Han and Chewie’s portion of the tale looks great. This is how to debut a new Star Wars series. Reading this book will only increase fans’ desire to go to the Disney theme parks. I was already excited, now I’m on fire. Overall grade: A

To order a digital copy go to https://comicstore.marvel.com/Star-Wars-Galaxys-Edge-2019-1-of-5/digital-comic/51098?r=1

To see the covers visit my Instagram account: patrickhayesscifipulse

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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