This week we take a look at the latest Star Wars book Princess Leia, and check out the launch of All New Hawkeye!
Princess Leia #1 (of 5)
Since they’ve received the license, Marvel has wasted no time in publishing Star Wars comics. After the stellar releases of the main title and the Darth Vader spin-off, we now welcome the lovely Princess Leia Organa (Skywalker) to our comic shelves. Written by comics legend Mark Waid and drawn by Terry Dodsen, Princess Leia is the third Star Wars spin off, and unfortunately it doesn’t quite live up to the hype that Star Wars and Darth Vader have given it.
Taking place (altogether now) right after A New Hope, Princess Leia takes a look into the rebellion’s plans immediately following the destruction of the Death Star. After finishing her speech at the award ceremony for Han and Luke (sorry Chewie), Leia gives a few brief words for the fallen Rebel Soldiers, which includes her adoptive mother and father. Unfortunately for Leia, those words aren’t deemed sufficient to certain members of the Rebellion. After meeting with one such Rebel Pilot, Evaan, Leia decides to take to the stars to find the remaining surviving Alderaanians, and bring them together as one.
That’s the gist of this opening issue. Unlike Star Wars or Darth Vader, there isn’t a really big action scene or cool character moment that seals the deal on this series. Waid’s script is fine, but it’s missing something that both Jason Aaron and Kieron Gillen’s scripts have. The conflict here isn’t all that interesting, and while it’s cool to see what the Rebellion was up to right after the destruction of the Death Star, there’s a part of me that feels like this ground is being covered already in the main Star Wars title.
Princess Leia features Terry Dodsen on art, which was honestly one of the reasons why I was so interested in the series in the first place. As the artist on one of my favorite Spider-Man runs, Dodsen has long been an artist that I’ve loved. Well, it’s with a heavy heart that I have to say this: his art in this is bad. Like, questioning if it’s the same artist bad.
Now some of this might be a new inker. Oh wait, nope, Rachel Dodsen, his long time inker, is there. Well, maybe it’s the colorist? A long shot but-oh no, wait, that’s Jordie Bellaire, the best colorist in the business. Guess it’s Dodsen then. I thought I had prepared myself when I saw the preview images in the back of Star Wars #1, but I was still shocked when I opened this up and took in Dodsen’s work. I hope this is just a fluke, because if this is what the rest of this miniseries is going to look like, I’m out.
While Princess Leia might not ignite the interest of new readers like Star Wars and Darth Vader did, it’ll scratch the itch that waiting for the next Star Wars issue gives you. But when you’re done, you might be saying, “That’s it”? With Marvel releasing these Star Wars books there was bound to be one or two that just wouldn’t click, but it‘s a shame that Princess Leia was one of them.
All New Hawkeye #1
No, your eyes aren’t deceiving you; the first issue of the new relaunch of Hawkeye has shipped BEFORE the previous series has ended (Matt Fraction and David Aja’s series is delayed? shocking!). Despite this, Jeff Lemire and Ramon Perez’ All-New Hawkeye requires little to no knowledge of the run that came before it, and is an absolute blast to read.
Fans of early issues of Hawkeye like “The Tape” will be extremely happy with this issue, which finds Hawkeyes Clint Barton and Kate Bishop on a special mission for SHIELD. As they work their way through an army of nameless Hydra goons, we’re also treated to flashbacks of Clint’s childhood with his brother Barney. Jeff Lemire’s script does an incredible job in both instances, and both Clint and Kate sound like the characters you fell in love with at the beginning of the previous Hawkeye run.
Ramon Perez’s art is, simply put, pretty spectacular. The present day segments of the story are drawn in a way that’s similar to David Aja’s style, but it still has Perez’ fingerprints on it. Perez draws the action sequences beautifully, and does a stellar job of showcasing the different quirks and facial expressions that Clint and Kate have. His flashback scenes are the real highlight, however. There’s a beautiful dream like quality to them, but when the reality of Clint and Barney’s situation hits, we feel it as well because of how well Perez depicts it.
I’ll be the first to admit that Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Hawkeye was starting to wear thin on me. After the gimmick issues and constant delays, I was all but done with “Hawkguy”. But sometimes, a character needs a fresh take, and it seems like ol’ Clint’s getting it with Jeff Lemire and Ramon Perez. If you’ve been annoyed with Hawkeye’s previous run, you should definitely pick this up. If you’ve loved Hawkeye’s previous run, you should ALSO pick this up. While it’s annoying that Hawkeye is getting a relaunch, the quality of this issue more than makes up for it.
Now let’s just hope that this too doesn’t get hit with massive delays.
CAPE CRISIS RECOMMENDS: