Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Modern IDW: Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny - Hera

The third Forces of Destiny one-shot published in January 2018 stars Hera Syndulla.  Hera previously appeared in the Forces of Destiny - Leia one-shot.  In her own title, she travels with Chopper to the farming community Fekunda Outpost hoping it will be a food source for the Rebellion.  It turns out the Empire arrived before Hera with the same intent, so Hera instructs the inhabitants on how to foment discord so the Empire leaves.  The story ends with the Imperials leaving resulting in Hera's mission to secure a supply line with Fekunda Outpost a success.  This is an original story, but interestingly, it could have a tentative tie to the season 1, episode 14 Forces of Destiny short An Imperial Feast.  In that tale, Princess Leia sends Han Solo and Chewbacca to get a crate of ration sticks from Hera.  Leia hopes giving the food to the Ewoks will prevent them from eating Imperial Stormtroopers they captured.  I like to think Leia knows Hera has the food supplies because of her successful mission to Fekunda Outpost.

Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny - Hera a - IDW, U.S. (January 2018)
Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny - Hera b - IDW, U.S. (January 2018)
The retailer incentive is a wrap-around animated variant which was initially released in a 1:10 ratio.

Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny - Hera c - IDW, U.S. (January 2018)
retailer incentive variant
The convention exclusive is the same artwork as the Elsa Charretier cover b artwork, except the front cover does not contain any text.

Star Wars Adventures: Forces of Destiny - Hera d - IDW, U.S. (January 2018)
Convention exclusive
Hera Syndulla also made comic book appearances in both the main Star Wars and Doctor Aphra titles from Marvel in 2018.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Modern Marvel: Star Wars #46 Mile High Comics Exclusive

Mile High Comics had ended their uninterrupted run of exclusive covers for the main Star Wars title with issue #46.  It was an impressive undertaking for a comic retailer to solicit so many exclusive covers for a single title.

Star Wars #46d - Marvel Comics, U.S. (April 2018)
Mile High Comics exclusive
This final cover is by Paul Renaud who has created Star Wars covers for not only Marvel, but also for Dark Horse.  The cover is a nice visage of Princess Leia.  In the foreground is a reference to the opening scene of A New Hope where the Tantive IV is trying to outrun a pursuing Star Destroyer.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Retro Dark Horse: Dark Horse Presents (2011) #1

The first title published by Dark Horse Comics was the anthology Dark Horse Presents in July 1986.  The title ran for 162 issues and ended in September 2000.  Approximately 25 years after the first issue was published, Dark Horse revived the title in April 2011.  This second volume uses an 80 page format and the first issue contains 8 comic stories.  Appropriately, Paul Chadwick's Concrete is the first story and other notable contributions are made by Howard Chaykin, Neal Adams, and Richard Corben.  The final story by Randy Stradley, The Third Time Pays For All, is a prelude for Star Wars: Crimson Empire III.

Dark Horse Presents #1 a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (April 2011)
Dark Horse Presents #1 b - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (April 2011)
The eight page Star Wars story sets up the status quo for the third Crimson Empire mini-series.  Emperor Palpatine has been dead for ten years and Kir Kanos, a former Royal Guard, is operating as a bounty hunter.  While pursuing and catching his prey, Lem Krarr, and transporting him to collect the reward, Kir Kanos thinks back on the two times he has crossed paths with Mirith Sinn.  He knows he will meet her again in his pursuit of revenge against Luke Skywalker for his role in killing Palpatine.  When Kanos arrives at his destination to collect the bounty, he learns that Krarr killed fourteen younglings.  Kanos summarily executes Krarr, settling for six thousand credits instead of the ten thousand credits if Krarr was brought in alive.  Meanwhile on Coruscant, Mirith Sinn is thinking about Kir Kanos when Leia approaches her.  Leia explains Mirith should not fixate on one man since she will soon be her head of security.  As Leia leaves, Mirith vows to kill Kir Kanos if she ever sees him again.

Neither of the two standard covers contains Star Wars artwork, although both contain a blurb Star Wars: Crimson Empire.  The first cover features Concrete by Paul Chadwick and the second cover is by Frank Miller, previewing Xerxes, the prequel to his acclaimed 300.  (Interestingly, Xerxes did not begin publication until April 2018.)  A third variant cover was also issued, featuring artwork by Paul Pope.  This cover was originally released in a 1:20 ratio with the other two covers.

Dark Horse Presents #1 c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (April 2011)