Tuesday, 21 June 2011
Review: Darth Vader and the Lost Command
One of a slew of new series published by Dark Horse over the coming year Darth Vader and the Lost Command tells the story of Vader who leads a batallion into uncharted space to recover a lost Command under the son of Tarkin. Hopwever he finds much more than a missing squad and a threat even to the mighty Sith Lord deep in the Ghost Nebula!
As I've just said Vader is assigned this duty to retrieve a lost squad for Tarkin. Plagued by visions of Padme he struggles with this relatively simple request and finds his quarry hard to track, coming up against the Atoan people, who while not a match for the Empire are resilient and have their own agenda, one - Lady Saro - agrees to guide Vader, but demands to be made ruler of the Ghost Nebula under the Empire. Vader must wade through treachery and deceipt, ambushes in space and a battle on a tar covered planet to find the truth, which is not what he hoped for.
This near human species inhabited the Atoan system in the Ghost Nebula. While they appear human there are a number of differences, both in culture, with them possessing their own language and technology but also biologically, with organs distributed around their body ratrher than having the vulnerability of a single heart. They lived on a variety of worlds within their system and had different leaders, oner leader Saro wished to use the Empire to make her leader of them all.
This fighter was used by rogue Atoan forces to ambush Vader's Imperials. They hid in the Wreckage of a Star Destroyer and attacked his fighters from behind. Despite the element of surprise the bulky fighters weren't as nimble as Imperial V-Wings and so they lost the battle.
This enormous mobile fortress was used by Atoan forces on an unnamed world that was covered in tar pits. The enormous station was able to stay afloat and evade Imperial walkers until Darth Vader caught it in a sneak attack and took the bridge himself.
The series takes place in the Ghost Nebula and the Atoan system so no galaxy traipsing in this one, but I'll show you where it is on the map anyway - 'cause it's been a while!
I was quite skeptical at first, the change in art styles between Vader's dream sequences, his encounters with the Emperor and later the main battle scenes was confusing, but it grew on me as each piece has a different emotional resonance. After lapping up the epic scale of Legacy for so long it's a bit of a shift to change to smaller contained stories but I really enjoyed this one - it reminded me of all the graphic novels I used to read in Borders when I was a teenager!! A good story and exploration of Vader's psyche.