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Star Wars #18

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By Brian Wood, Stéphane Créty, Julien Hugonnard-Bert & Gabe Eltaeb

The latest arc of the flagship Star Wars series at Dark Horse Comics has been improving a lot after a terrible start and with this issue Brian Wood failed to disappoint, providing an entertaining conclusion. We all knew that it would be good once the action kicked in, and Wood lived up to expectations.

The third arc on the series has been wrapped up quickly, and ever since the betrayal in the last issue it was handled very well. Mon Mothma’s character even had her moment to shine in last Wednesday’s issue, proving that she’s more than capable of getting her hands dirty after Leia reveals that she brought a gun to her Wedding Day. Much like the rest of the cast, Wood gets them in character this time around – the whiny Luke that put readers off the opening arc is gone, and the end result is all the more entertaining because of it, with some great lightsaber action once again.

Stéphane Créty’s pencils have been pretty solid for the most part. He’s not the strongest artist to contribute to this book but he handles the panels very well, injecting them full of life and handling the action solidly. We also don’t get to see enough of the human toll that should be coming from an entire Imperial Fleet bombarding Arrochar, which is something that should leave a pretty high body count. Aside from that though, the artwork is fine, with Julien Hugonnard-Bert’s inks top notch as always, and the colours provided by Gabe Eltaeb continue to look amazing as they have done for the entire length that he’s been working on this book.

If there was another problem that this issue had from a non-artistic perspective, it would have to come from the pace, which had a problem and it seemed that Wood felt that he needed to end the story in this issue without dragging it out. Whilst it’s good to see the end of this arc, there was opportunity for an improvement in the pacing structure which is a shame especially since we’ve seen better work from Wood in the past.

However, this book still manages to be enjoyable for the most part despite its flaws. It’s far from the best Star Wars issue but it’s still loads better than the weakest, There are signs of improvement in certain areas as well – the narrative feels a lot more like Star Wars (which it should), which is always a good thing. Where we go from here will be interesting to see – especially with so little time left before the Dark Horse licensing of Star Wars books runs out.

Can Wood end his run on the series on a high? Let’s hope so.

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