STAR WARS #4
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by John Cassaday, Laura Martin
Published by Marvel Comics
Release Date: April 22, 2015
Less than a week after getting all giddy about some scoundrels saying “we’re home”, Marvel treats readers with the fourth installment of a series that gets me excited every month and makes me hear that glorious music with every page flip.
Jason Aaron has done a fantastic job capturing the tone of the original Star Wars films, especially the tone of A New Hope. While we know some of the major events coming for these characters, Aaron writes them in a way that feels fresh and exciting, like we’re getting slow release TV episodes of what happened in between the films, with all the awesome tensions of the growing Rebel Alliance and the full-force Empire. Star Wars is at it’s best when there’s a Lord Vader slamming his iron fist down on the galaxy, and Aaron writes a great Vader. While readers are spoiled with this and the great Gillen/Larroca Vader series, I still can’t get enough of storylines involving Vader and his presence in this issue gives it a great amount of weight. Aaron has a great grip on the voice of the iconic villain and the rest of the cast of this book, and the plot is intriguing as well. This issue is just another example of how this series is worthy of the name, and how comics can give readers the same goosebumps and excited feelings that a good trailer can. Star Wars is alive and well and there is more energy in this comic series than I have felt in Star Wars books in a long time (and I liked the Dark Horse books a lot).
John Cassaday is damn good at this art game, y’all. He excels at making this comic feel like a film, using angles and panel layouts that give a cinematic feel. His artwork is extremely detailed, from the grossness of Jabba to the cold stare of the mask of Vader, and the “special guest” in this issue appears in a poster-worthy way. He’s top flight when he’s on, and in Star Wars #4 he is completely on. His pencils are sharp, his inking is great and as well as it is written, the pencils sell the timing of this story very well. There is a lightness in his artwork, and Laura Martin’s colour work, that is more hopeful than the tone of Empire. For artwork to capture the tone of A New Hope so well is a special thing, and this is a fun, entertaining comic.
Star Wars #4 is another strong chapter in a series that has been everything I’ve hoped for even if I didn’t know I wanted it. Aaron, Cassaday and Martin are a great team and the tone they have captured is damn near magical. The Star Wars Universe is a world of wonderful stories and this is an example of just how good Star Wars comics can be. Fire up the soundtrack of your choice and give this one a read, it’s going to scratch that itch you’ve got while you wait for December.
The Verdict: 9.0/10