Star Wars: Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith 1: Imperial Machine

star wars darth vader dark lord of the sith volume 1 imperial machine cover trade paperback tpb
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Art: 8/10

Interesting period to explore

Set in the pre-Star Wars period lets us know what happens to the characters

Comic Info

Comic Name: Star Wars:  Darth Vader (2)

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Writer:  Charles Soule/Chris Eliopoulos

Artist:  Giuseppe Camuncoli/Chris Eliopoulos

# of Issues: 6

Release Date: 2017

star wars darth vader #1 cover homage variant

Star Wars: Darth Vader (2) #1 Variant

Reprints Star Wars:  Darth Vader (2) #1-6 (August 2017-December 2017).  Anakin Skywalker is dead, and in his place, Darth Vader has risen.  With Order 66 clearing most of the Jedi, Darth Vader must find his new path under the Emperor and reimagine himself as a Sith.  The Emperor realizes that his hold on the Empire is still not strong and that the key to maintaining control could be a mission to end the Jedi threat forever…and Vader shall be his agent!

Written by Charles Soule, Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith Volume 1:  Imperial Machine is a Marvel Comics Star Wars spin-off title.  The series takes place after the events of Star Wars—Episode III:  Revenge of Sith and features art by Giuseppe Camuncoli.  The collection also features a short story from Star Wars:  Darth Vader (2) #1 “No Good Deed…” which is written and illustrated by Chris Eliopoulos.  The issues in the collection were also collected as part of Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith—Volume 1.

Darth Vader was always one of the best bad guys, and I grew up with him.  I had the toys and all the corresponding merchandise to go with them…Star Wars was life.  As a kid, Darth Vader was a mystery until the secrets began to unfold about him in Star Wars:  The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars:  Return of the Jedi…but the “story” came with the so-so prequel films.  This series seeks to flesh out Vader by exploring the period immediately following his resurrection in Star Wars—Episode III and how it fits into the Emperor’s bigger plans.

star wars darth vader #5 cover review

Star Wars: Darth Vader (2) #5

This is a worthy idea to explore.  The Emperor not only has risen to power by convincing the galaxy that the Jedi are evil, but suddenly, there is a new creepy guy at his side.  It honestly doesn’t make much sense in the bigger picture.  This series can explore that direction and the “problems” that arise from the quasi-secret takeover of a Republic government…and it is some of those aspects I would like examined.

The art is good.  It is always tricky adapting “real people” in these comics and there can be two different approaches.  The artists can take an almost photo-real look or just approach them as comic book characters that resemble the characters from the film.  Giuseppe Camuncoli largely takes this role.  They look quite close to the characters of movie but little stylistic changes made for both simplification and other visuals work out.  It is a solid crafting of the Star Wars universe which is very rich and expansive (I do hope we get some more variety with the Jedi that Vader is hunting down).

Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith is a good collection and can be recommended for fans of the series and movies.  It is a different take on a period that has been explored and re-explored over and over again both by Marvel and Dark Horse but taking Vader’s perspective does feel fresh though ultimately, you know what happens to Vader and his quest.  The Emperor is also turning into a nice supporting character since he too seems to have his own game he’s playing (and it makes me wish Marvel would put out a Palpatine series that might explore the start to finish what Palpatine is going for).  Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith 1:  Imperial Machine is followed by Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith 2:  Legacy’s End.

Related Links:

Star Wars:  Darth Vader—Dark Lord of the Sith 2:  Legacy’s End

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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