I wish that this comic had stayed in the dark recesses of someone’s imagination and never seen the light of day!
Cover Art By: Dave Dorman
Art By: Cam Kennedy
Written By: Tom Veitch
“And now, my young apprentice… your father is dead. Have you come to join me? Will you take the place that rightfully belongs to you at my side?” – Darth Sidious/Emperor Palpatine
Reading Dark Empire was a mind numbing experience. Every time I turned the page I knew another section of bad dialogue, overly exposition laden narration, and mediocre art awaited me. I had no impetus at all to keep turning the pages, beyond my Star Wars fandom. As a Star Wars fan I found Dark Empire to be a badly constructed and thought out exercise in unoriginal ideas. As a comic book fan, or just a human being in general, I found Dark Empire to be an appallingly bad waste of my time.
The angle that I use to approach Dark Empire doesn’t really matter. What matters is that from top to bottom, left to right, and beginning to end Dark Empire is a shining example of how not to do an original Star Wars comic book. I’m not about to back down from my statement of Dark Empire being a mind numbing experience. Dark Empire is stupid, in conception and execution. I’m just happy I finished Dark Empire and can stop the horror, until the sequel at least.
The biggest issue I have with Dark Empire is the startling lack of originality. In this comic we’re given another super-weapon, the World Devestators, the return of the Emperor, and a Jedi flirting with going dark. The World Devastators are just plain dumb, they look ugly, aren’t interesting and offer nothing to the Star Wars universe. Bringing the Emperor back is nothing more than a sales ploy. The idea of him being so consumed with dark energy that he burns out bodies comes across as very stupid. It’s also lazy to trot out a deceased villain, there was no need for a universe as full of opportunities as Star Wars to have to use an already dead villain (and in the process completely negate Darth Vader’s turn against the Emperor and change of heart.)
I’m giving the idea of a Jedi going to the dark it’s own paragraph. The way that Dark Empire treats Jedi and the Force made me cringe. In Dark Empire normal people are nothing, they aren’t capable of anything. The bad guys and the good guys both state on multiple occasions that normal people cannot comprehend the Force or be the type of person that a Force user can be. I hate that attitude, I hate that the comic endorses that attitude. I especially hate that attitude since Dark Empire doesn’t do anything interesting with the Force. The most Dark Empire is able to do with the Force is to give its users far too much power, and talk up a bunch of nonsense about the Jedi.
I’m gonna stop here. I didn’t just dislike Dark Empire, I loathed Dark Empire. It’s a comic book full of unoriginal ideas. The art is mediocre at best, and is usually far too broad to convey they details of what is actually happening in a given panel. Dark Empire was a major disappointment. No, Dark Empire was more than that, it was an embarrassment to the name of Star Wars.