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Empire #33 In the Shadows of Their Fathers, Part 4 (of 5)

Story: Thomas Andrews
Art: Adriana Melo
Coloring: Michael Atiyeh
Lettering: Michael David Thomas
Cover: Tomás Giorello
Released: 08/31/2005

Reviewed by: JF Boivin (08/31/2005)

SUMMARY:

Luke and Loyalist leader Nolan Gillmunn are captives of Governor Thorne, the leader of the Nationalists who intends to turn them over to the Empire so they can leave the planet alone. But when Darth Vader himself arrives, he has other plans for the planet. Meanwhile, Princess Leia and Nera Dantels manage to rescue the droids Threepio and Artoo, and meet up with Wedge and Hobbie at their ship the Starduster. But with Vader on the way, does the small resistance group stand a chance?


[final cover]


[preview cover]


THE STORY

This story arc feels like it's been going on forever, but it has more to do with the publishing schedule than the actual story. The build up is over, so this issue is more action-oriented as it approaches its conclusion. As foretold in the one-shot Empire #31, Vader arrives to Jabiim to capture the Rebels. Now the Sith's gonna hit the fan (bad pun, I know). But for now, he only stays in orbit and learns that Luke is a captive of the local Governor. From him, Luke learns a bit more about what his father did during the Clone Wars, and we learn how Nolan's father died (in another flashback to the Clone Wars period).

The droids have been pretty useless so far, and I think the story wouldn't suffer without them. Wedge and Hobbie's roles are solidified in this issue, as they finally meets up with Leia. There is a cool action sequence where Dantels shoots off the Imperials, including an AT-ST, with the Starduster's guns. I also really like Vader's introspection as he arrives in Jabiim's orbit. And the final scene with Vader is reminescent of the scene in A New Hope where Tarkin decides to destroy Alderaan anyway. Here, he decides to raze the surface of the planet to erase bad memories, instead of keeping his part of the deal he had with the Nationalists.


THE ART

Like I said before, Melo is really good at drawing characters, but her weakness is in technology. The droids and Vader are particularly weak, but not horrible. But this is just a minor gripe, as the overall art is very appealing. The cover by Giorello, however, is one of the worst I've seen in a while. You can't win them all.


CONCLUSIONS

This five-parter has been consistently good so far, and this issue manages to keep the interest up for the final part. It leaves no clue as to how it will end.

Rating: 7 / 10 Recommended

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