REVIEW: ‘Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga’

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga is published by VIZ Media and is a collection of stories that revolve, at least in part, around Luke Skywalker. While some stories feature him directly, others feature the legend around him or show a perspective of an existing canonical event from the perspective of another being. This collection features renowned Japanese manga artists, Akira Himekawa, Haruichi, Subaru, Akira Fukaya, and Takashi Kisaki, who each use unique styles to bring him to life in every piece. The work is also inspired by Nebula, Hugo, and World Fantasy award-winning author Ken Liu’s Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi, who penned the original story that is adapted for manga by the artists.

Akira Fukaya and Takashi Kisaki are an artist and writer team who frequently collaborate on manga projects published in Japan. Their entrance in this collection, “The Starship Graveyard.” is their English manga debut. In it, the pair explore the weight of the legendary Skywalker and how his name and his deeds have inspired those in the galaxy to stand up to the remaining Empire.

This is my second favorites of the bunch because it expands on a concept introduced in the Sequel Trilogy but never fully explored: the Legend of Luke. Like the opening story, “The Starship Graveyard” sets the tone for the rest of The Legends of Luke Skywalker and does so by showing us that the name Luke Skywalker is bigger than the man who bears it. “The Starship Graveyard” holds even more weight in this manga iteration because of the events of The Rise of Skywalker. A name can be a symbol, it can be family, and it can carry with all the hope in the galaxy.

Page from “I, Droid” by Haruichi

“I, Droid” is Haruichi’s English manga debut. Haruichi is also the creator behind the Star Wars Japanese webtoon, Leia Organa: Ordeal of the PrincessIn “I, Droid,” Haruichi hones in on the compassion of Luke Skywalker as we head to a planet of exploited droids who have had their agency stripped from them with a microchip. As one droid learns about Luke, we see that hope is there even in the darkest of situations, if we choose to listen.

Additionally, “The Tale of Lugubrious Mote” is also Subaru’s English manga debut. In this story, we see pivotal events in Return of the Jedi retold from the perspective of another who was there, one that was too small to notice, Lugubrious Mote. Channeling fan-favorite anthology From A Certain Point of View, this story is wholesome, and not only showcases that Luke was a product of the world and heroes around him, but shows us Leia as his equal.

Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga
Panel from “Big Inside” by Akira Himekawa

Akira Himekawa are an artist duo from Japan with many fans all over the world and “Big Inside” expands on the world of Star Wars by not only giving us a unique adventure story for Luke, but also by piecing out mythology as well. While this story is better read than explained, the art of “Big Inside” is my favorite of the entire book. It’s beautiful and grand in the way that only manga can be. In this story, we see an epic world with a world, one that showcases both the cycle of life and offers a look at grief and processing those we lose. It’s my favorite of the collection and hits me deeply.

Overall, The Legends of Luke Skywalker is a moving collection of stories that not only show us more about Luke but serves as a testament to the mythos that has surrounded him. What the manga does is bring life to Liu’s beautiful stories with varying art styles, with each of the stories offering up emotion and perspective. While I don’t want to spoil the collection by going too in-depth, it must be noted that with the end of Luke Skywalker written in the films, this manga carries a weight to it. Seeing the stories illustrated hits me hard as a fan of Luke Skywalker, and of Star Wars. The stories are very much about what we leave behind and what we inspire in others. In this art, we see the impact of actions and how they call us to something more from time to time.  Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga is simply, a must-read for fans of Luke and of the Star Wars universe.

Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga is available now.

Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker - The Manga
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TL;DR

The Legends of Luke Skywalker is a moving collection of stories that not only show us more about Luke but serves as a testament to the mythos that has surrounded him…Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga is simply, a must-read for fans of Luke and of the Star Wars universe.