Above: Skottie Young painting that will be used as a series of variant covers for new Star Wars series launching this year at Marvel.
Last week, Marvel comics launched the first title in their revamped Star Wars line. In the early days of the franchise Marvel was Star Wars comic home, before the license landed at Dark Horse comics in the early 90s.
I was aware of the Dark Horse stories, and even picked up an arc or two. By the time I started visiting my local comic shop back in 2005, the storylines were entrenched and weren't really jumping off points for someone getting started.
One of the reasons I'm really excited about the new Star Wars book is the artist. Astonishing X-Men caught my eye and I picked up the first 12 issues in a trade paperback. This run was written by Joss Whedon and pencilled by John Cassaday. If you've never seen it, the art is fantastic. Here's an example:
Colossus has always been a personal favorite, and this is one of his best storylines. The whole run with Whedon and Cassaday ranks at the top of my personal favorite comic arcs.
My top 4 in no particular order: Checkmate 1-22 by Greg Rucka, Flash: Fastest Man Alive by Marc Guggenhiem and Tony Daniel, Astonishing X-Men by Whedon and Cassaday, and All-Star Superman by Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly.
I cancelled my pull list sometime in 2010, and haven't really kept up with any series since then.
That all changed with Star Wars 001. It picks up where Episode IV left off: the Rebels have destroyed the Death Star and making their way in a galaxy far, far, away.
Seriously, I'm not going to talk about the story here because you should go buy this book!
Go to your local comic book shop and see if they have any of the nifty pins from this launch left. See if they have any prints left of the awesome Skottie Young variant cover from the top of this post. If you're local to Pensacola, I highly recommend Pensacola Pop Comics on 12th Ave.
And get ready, because next month Marvel will be launching a new title: Vader. An entire series focused on the baddest Jedi to ever grace the big screen.
Here's a preview panel for Vader revealed at the end of Star Wars 001:
If that isn't enough, there's another series coming in March.
Princess Leia 001!
As the dad of my own little self-rescuing princess, I couldn't be more excited to see Marvel launching a new comic focused on Leia. Here's the cover for issue 1:
Don't miss these friends, because they are getting top-notch talent and treatment at Marvel. Here's hoping they can get a kick-ass Indiana Jones series going at Marvel before the end of the year.