Comic Reviews: Star Wars: Darth Maul and Uncanny X-Force!
Star Wars: Darth Maul: Death Sentence #1 (of 4)
Ah “Star Wars” comics. Many times I find your stories to be inconsequential with the entire saga, but every now and then you surprise me with something awesome. Shadows Of The Empire, Force Unleashed, and the most recent Darth Vader and The Lost Command are all examples of compelling stories outside of the movie cannon, and with the start of this new Darth Maul centered four issue series, we may have another title to add to that list.
Taking place after the events of the most recent Clone Wars cartoon series,which saw the return of Darth Maul, Death Sentence finds Maul and his brother Savage Opress preparing an attack on the jedi order. Of course, Maul’s return hasn’t gone without notice, and a bounty has been placed on both his and Opress’ heads by a wealthy miner. Dozens of mercenaries attack the two brothers, which leads to an awesome battle in which Maul and his brother mop the floor with their attackers. Maul and Opress are then approached by a Jedi Knight sent to investigate Maul’s return, leaving us hanging.
As I’ve already alluded to, Death Sentence is one hell of a “Star Wars” comic. Tom Taylor’s script nails what makes Maul a cool character, and his relationship with his brother/apprentice is fantastic. Taylor balances the action and exposition perfectly, and while it helps if one is familiar with Maul’s return from the Clone Wars cartoon, it’s not necessary at all. Bruno Redondo handles the art duties here, with a style that mimics the classic “Star Wars” feel from the movies, but at the same time isn’t static. The action scenes are fantastic and surprisingly brutal. This is the badass that we were promised in Episode One and were denied.
Darth Maul: Death Sentence continues Dark Horse’s Star Wars line in style, and is shaping up to be an great addition to the expanded universe. For the many Darth Maul fans out there who are hungry for more of their favorite Sith, this is the book you’ve been waiting for.
Uncanny X-Force #28
Now THIS is what I’m talking about. Following their apparent “death” at the hands of the new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, X-Force is sent into a possible future in which they rule over the world with an iron fist. Rick Remender’s script is packed with excellent future depictions of our team, and seeing them interact with their past selves is a delight to read. Julian Totino Tedesco is the artist for this issue, and it’s good to finally have someone who has the Uncanny X-Force “feel” drawing this book again. This is an awesome issue and hopefully the start of a return to form for the title.