This weekend at STAR WARS CELEBRATION CHICAGO 2019 Star Wars comics fans packed the Marvel Comics panel to see what the House of Ideas has lined up going forward Marvel didn’t disappoint (in my opinion) with a range of exciting announcements…
First up Lucasfilm Story Group’s Matt Martin gave some insight into the upcoming Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge mini-series which will be written by Ethan Sacks and drawn by Wil Sliney. It shares its name with the new lands opening at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort later this year. Sacks said quote:
“There is a criminal gang that is out to plot a heist for a specific object there.”
and went on to show some interior art which includes some of the more famous characters such as Greedo and of course a story about smugglers and a gang planning a heist wouldn’t be complete without an appearance from scoundrel extraordinaire Han Solo and his partner Chewbacca. The series launches in April and will include cover art by Rod Reis and Tommy Lee Edwards
Next up writer Greg Pak revealed more information and showed interior art for his current STAR WARS: AGE OF REBELLION series which is eight one-shot stories set in canon telling stories focused around original trilogy characters about moments fans have never seen. These include a Han Solo Story by Pak, illustrated by Chris Sprouse and colored by Tamra Bonvillain. and comes out in May. Pak praised the artistic team on the book and revealed the story takes place shortly after the events of A New Hope
Fan favorite bounty hunter Boba Fett drawn by Marc Laming is also getting a story which Pak revealed he has a special fondness for quote:
“I have a special affection for the Boba Fett one,” Pak shared. “The art is by Mark Laming… and we did it as a straight western. It’s like a badass bounty hunter western story. Boba Fett, I think he says three words during the whole thing… Everybody’s got a different idea of… his motivations.”
The series first to installments came out this past week with one about Princess Leia and one about the villainous Moff Tarkin and are on shelves now with stories about Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Lando Calrissian, and Jabba the Hutt also still to come. All the covers for the series are by Terry Dodson.
Marvel announced another series of one shot as well but this time focused around the characters from the latest installment in the Star Wars canon. Superstar writer Tom Taylor will write three of the STAR WARS: AGE OF RESISTANCE one-shots that focus on characters from the last three movies. This will kick off in July with STAR WARS: AGE OF RESISTANCE: FINN #1. in a tail that will reveal the first sparks on conscience in Finn that ultimately lead to him being able to break from The First Order. Ramon Rosas will be on art.
Taylor will also write one about super shiny First Order villain Captain Phasma. With art by Leonard Kirk STAR WARS: THE AGE OF RESISTANCE: CAPTAIN PHASMA will according to Lucasfilm Story Group’s Assistant Editor Tom Groneman qoute:
“This takes place earlier in Phasma’s career, It will show the First Order at full strength. We’ll see a little bit more of what makes Phasma tick.”
Also in July, There will be a collaborative STAR WARS; AGE OF RESISTANCE SPECIAL. G.Willow Wilson, Tom Taylor, Chris Eliopoulos, and Elsa Charretier will write. Willow Wilson telling a tale about Holdo, Taylor writing the Maz story featuring some of our favorite scoundrels and Eliopoulos will pen a tale of BB-8.
September it will be Rey’s turn as the Tom Taylor and artist Ramon Rosas bring us a tale of Rey and Chewbacca set in the time period between when Rey left the Resistance to find Luke and actually locating him.
There is also a Poe Dameron one-shot coming which will, according to Groneman, introduce us to one of Poe’s mentors and a general Hux one shot is also in the works. All covers by Phil Noto for this series.
One of the biggest announcements from the panel is that in July Greg Pak will be taking over the main STAR WARS title and that artist Phil Noto will be taking over art duties on covers and interiors with issue #68! During the panel, Pak revealed that the ongoing storyline would see quote:
“There are a lot of other probes across the galaxy. What are they doing?” Pak mused. “They launch three desperate missions to try and thwart these droids… There are certain pairings we don’t see that often… We do have Chewie and 3PO teaming up, for example.”
“Han gets tricked into [the mission] because they need ‘the best pilot, so everybody has to pair up, and yes, Han and Leia get paired up together. Luke and R2 end up stranded on a planet.”
Another brand new mini-series announced, and for old STAR WARS comics readers, a pretty deep cut was the announcement of the six-issue TARGET: VADER. Written by Robbie Thompson and drawn by Marc Laming this series will reintroduce a character that first appeared in MARVEL STAR WARS #16 in 1978 called Valance.
The series will see Valance, a cyborg bounty hunter with a personal vendetta against Vader, according to Groneman quote:
“It’s all about Valance and his crew pulling an impossible mission hunting down Dark Lords of the Sith.” and further describing the character as: “a match for Darth Vader in a way we haven’t seen before.”
There were several other announcements including a preview of Jody Houser and Roge Antonio’s upcoming previously announced series STAR WARS: TIE FIGHTER #1 which is actually a tie in with to the series STAR WARS: ALPHABET SQUADRON by Alexander Freed which is out June. While Freed’s will focus on the story as told through the eyes of the rebellion, Housers will tell the story as seen through the eyes of the Empire. Additional covers for Star Wars:
Simon Spurrier and Wilton Stanos will continue the story of Doctor Aphra as her next arc kicks off with Aphra having to face her past and readers will get to see how she grew up when issue 32 hits shelves in May.
Marvel also be reprinting several of their more recently popular storylines under the TRUE BELIEVERS label including the very popular VADER as well as THRAWN and several others.
If anything these announcements show that STAR WARS comic fandom is alive and well and that When it comes to STAR WARS and MARVEL, the force is certainly strong with them.
Keep an eye out for our select and ongoing review coverage of Marvel’s Star Wars comics series