One of the fun and interesting – or infuriating, take your pick – things about reading Star Wars comics from the era of this collection is the way they interact with what counts as current canon. Published by Dark Horse Comics in the early 00s, the stories collected in Star Wars Epic Collection: The Menace Revealed vol. 3 have been deemed non-canonical “legends” relative to the stories being told in the current comics from Marvel, as well as the movies and streaming series of the Disney era. They were also published in the early 2000s, just before or right around the release of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Which means they are indirectly non-canonical in a different way: by virtue of having been created before Attack of the Clones, they can’t reference later events, such as the Clone Wars or the details of Anakin’s fall to the dark side.
Obi-Wan Kenobi, the new Disney+ series, represents the first time the character has been in the cinematic spotlight by himself. But the vast tableau of Star Wars stories across multiple modes of media contains many previous examples in which the wise and cagey Jedi operates on his own. Below is an overview of some of the more notable offerings – both canonical and non-canonical “Legends” – as well as some Obi-Wan Kenobi fun facts, to get you ready for the new live-action series!
For modern audiences, the stories collected in the Star Wars Legends: Rise of the Sith Omnibus–first published by Dark Horse Comics over the course of the ‘90s and ‘00s but published today by Marvel Comics under the terms of their current licensing agreement–face a pair of uphill battles. For one, all of these stories are non-canonical “Legends,” meaning they don’t count in the current Star Wars narrative continuity, for whatever that is worth to any given reader. For another, they all take place in one of the lesser-loved eras of the Star Wars chronology, just before and after the events of The Phantom Menace.
Even though the prequel trilogy overall has received something of a reappraisal, as fans who encountered it as children have grown up to remember it with some of the nostalgia that drives fans of the original trilogy (and because many of the characters and concepts introduced by the prequels have since been mined for better and better-received stories in other mediums), The Phantom Menace itself remains something of the black sheep of the Star Wars family. [Read more…] about Star Wars Legends: Rise of the Sith Omnibus Review!
Occurring after the Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi comic series but serving as a prequel to the 2003 RPG on which it is based, the Knights of the Old Republic (aka KotOR) comic series ran for five years and fifty issues, warranting a brief return with the War mini-series. Main characters from the game would make appearances in KotOR, but it was given a surprising level of wiggle room when it comes to new characters and scenarios. Much of the cast of the book is unique to the series, and few have been seen since it drew to a close. This was the flagship title of the 2005 line relaunch from Dark Horse Comics, and one of the company’s top-selling titles.
KotOR has the distinction of having a single writer throughout its lengthy run, and of more or less existing outside of the greater story of Star Wars due to it taking place some four thousand years before Luke Skywalker was born. The Jedi we meet here are complicated and even villainous, and many politicians and government officials belong to larger networks of intergalactic criminals. As such, much of this tale is about doing the right thing despite incredible pressure to conform to the party line, making it somewhat unique in the Star Wars mythos. Despite that, the well-meaning kid with his ragtag group of friends at the story’s center will be familiar to even the most casual fan.
Comics reviewed include: Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (2006) #1-50, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic – War (2012) #1-5, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Handbook (2007) #1, material from Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic/Rebellion (2006) #0 [Read more…] about What’s Old Is New in Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
When Marvel re-acquired the license to create new Star Wars comics in 2015, they quickly launched a core group of series chronicling the adventures happening long ago in everyone’s favorite far away galaxy. As an added bonus, for the first time, following two decades of Dark Horse holding the license to make Star Wars comics (which, in turn, followed Marvel’s initial licensing of the characters back in the 70s), these stories would be considered canon, “official” continuations of the overall narrative depicted in the films & TV shows. Since then, the assorted Marvel Star Wars comic book series have been relaunched, renewed, and built out into their own little sub-universe of comic books. Now, as fans wait patiently for the next Disney+ series to launch and the next movie to start filming, it’s the perfect time to give the Star Wars comic book universe a chance.
But with so many different books out there, it’s not always clear where to start or what might suit your tastes. To help, here’s a brief rundown of each current series, when it takes place, what it’s about, what creators are involved, to help guide your journey. May the Force be with you! [Read more…] about The State of Star Wars (2021)