Marvel Debuts Mace Windu / Captain Phasma Comics

Two Star Wars standouts got their own comic books this month and they were none other than Jedi Master Mace Windu and metallic marine Captain Phasma. To begin with, last week the (sort of) vice president of Jedi during the Clone Wars saw his own mini-series debut from Marvel. The five-issue series is written by Matt Owens and pencilled by Denys Cowan and features a story of Mace leading a small party of Jedi to the planet Hissrich to monitor the Separatists.

While it’s still too early to praise or critique the story (issue #1 mostly introduced the characters involved), the art bears some discussion.  For the most part, things look pretty solid and proficiently drawn.  There are, however, a few panels when characters at a distance are very questionable looking.  For instance, there’s a moment of Yoda delivering some dialogue to Windu and the Jedi Council.  Up close, he’s drawn normally.  When the point of view pans back, oh my, do things go south.  It’s like Marvel Zombies invaded the Star Wars universe and got a hold of Yoda.  Shaak Ti is another character that looks hurriedly drawn.  She more closely resembles ‘V’ from V for Vendetta in the face at one point.  If the writing brings us a great little story though, the artwork can be overlooked.

This week was the premier issue of Captain Phasma’s solo title with writing courtesy of Kelly Thompson and the art from Marco Checchetto.  Rest assured the art does not contain the faults found in the Mace Windu inaugural issue, but doing a complete reverse scenario, the writing leaves something to be desired here.  In all fairness, I don’t want to harp on it too much because the simplified dialogue may have been the intent.  After all, Phasma is kind of the ‘walk softly/carry a big stick’ type.  Actually, she’s more of the ‘walk tall/carry a big blaster’ type, but I digress.

The story picks up immediately after Finn, Han and Chewie dump her in the Starkiller Base trash compactor, taking place off-camera in The Force Awakens.  She begins a foot pursuit which I don’t want to go into detail on as I’d rather not give too much away, but it is not an invigorating tale so far.  I know, I know, it’s the first issue.  Still, there are only four issues in the series and the story better make some impressive leaps next month.  There’s one panel of complete ridiculousness and one story that does more to push me away than draw me in.

Check them out and decide for yourself.  If the characters’ respective first issues are any sign of what’s to come, I suspect the Mace Windu series will be an average yet enjoyable read.  Meanwhile, I’m struggling to keep hope alive for Phasma.  If it ends up being awesome, kudos to the creative team.  It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve been wrong. 

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