Darth Vader #37: Curse of the Jedi, Scourge of the Droids
Utilizing an artifact Doctor Aphra has procured for him to control his wild power, Darth Vader finds himself with a small battalion of droids at his command. At the same time a new threat is controlling droids aboard his Star Destroyer.
After so many issues revolving around Sabe, Vader continues to press past that into the next story arc. As with all the main “Star Wars” comic series currently, this issue falls under the “Dark Droids” multi-series event. Boy does it deliver on the promise of dark droids. Not only does Vader now have a droid hit squad at his disposal, but Droids bent on Vader’s destruction have been taken over in pursuit of a much larger goal. Now they seek to infiltrated The Executor, a city sized Star Destroyer and home to one Mister D. Vader. Within no time at all, droids take over the massive ship and only leave a small group as bait fort the Dark Lord. Vader shortly discovers this and heads to reclaim what is his.
This issue, as well as the former two, depart so very differently from the core “Darth Vader” series. It has the same level of art and writing, but it is really just about Vader tearing paths to accomplish his goals. Even this single issue is a departure from the last two in that Doctor Aphra and Ochi are no longer present. The huge amount of focus on droids is also unusual, although they do appear frequently in the series. This chapter simply pours them on. However there are parts that do ring true to the motifs of this series. It signifies a huge change in Vader. It shows how time and time again he will beat any test thrown at him. It utilizes the signature gimmick of the whole “Darth Vader” series, the red-hued memories of Anakin Skywalker. There are variances to the formula though. The memories this time are brought to Vader via another character who asks him to remember his time as a Jedi. This droid also clearly states that he sees a distinct softening in Vader, which foreshadows his inevitable turn back to the Light to save his son.
The art is the same high quality it always is, but with the added richness of detail on so many droids. Flesh characters are mailable with shifting facial and bodily forms, which is certainly present in the Imperials in this issue. With robots, their lines are precise and actions often stiff. This issue keeps the solid lines and the stiffness, except when it comes to Vader’s destruction of them. At that point the droids are mere plaything he can puppet into any shapes or separate parts he wants. The colors are similarly bright as always, with the typical greys and blues of space and ship and red fire and action planet-side. The impact on the overall saga is very noteworthy though. This chapter signifies its part on the Dark Droid saga with a heavy hand, but it also shows the tears in Vader’s metaphorical armor. Anakin Skywalker will return as a Jedi.
With Palpatine incapacitated, its up to Mas Amedda to deal with the dark droid uprising himself. He will have no problems sacrificing Vader to do so. Vader however, is a tough nut to crack.
Darth Vader #37: Droid vs. Droid
- Writing - 7/107/10
- Storyline - 8/108/10
- Art - 7/107/10
- Color - 7/107/10
- Cover Art - 6/106/10
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