REVIEW: ‘Star Wars: Darth Vader,’ Issue #14

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Darth Vader #14

Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 is written by Greg Pak, who is joined by artist Raffaele Ienco, colorists Jason Kieth, letterer Joe Caramagna, and cover artists Aaron Kuder and Richard Isanove. Published by Marvel Comics, Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 continues Vader’s place in the War of the Bounty Hunters crossover event. As the Dark Lord searches for ways to find Luke Skywalker, he is still hounded by those looking to test his resolve. They will soon learn that Darth Vader is nearly unstoppable.

Previously in Star Wars: Darth Vader #13Vader began searching for Han Solo, which he hoped would lead him to Luke Skywalker. Restored to his former glory after passing Emperor Palpatine’s tests, he knew that his son was the biggest threat to his position at his master’s side. However, as he began his hunt for the former scoundrel, he was attacked by the dreaded droid bounty hunter IG-88 and a host of assassin droids. As if there was any doubt, the mechanical Sith Lord made quick work of his foes. Vader finally learned about the Crimson Dawn connection, but before he could continue his quest, he put his sights on those who hired IG-88 to show them that he could not be defeated.

Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 focuses on the individual behind the assassination attempt, Administrator Moore. Readers open to a flashback before the events of Vader’s battle versus IG-88. Following her failed attempt to kill Darth Vader during Emperor Palpatine’s trials for his apprentice, the Umbaraan was demoted from her position. Once she learned about Han Solo and his connection to Luke Skywalker, she launched her own scheme to defeat the restored Dark Lord. With a little help from the Force and coordination with the Umbaran Court, she launched her plan. Despite it seeming like her plot failed with Vader’s defeat of IG-88 and the Sith Lord locating the Umbaran Court later in Star Wars: Darth Vader #14, Sly Moore’s plan might have more to it than meets the eye.

Writer Pak has done a great job adding depth to a character that most wouldn’t even remember from the films. Ochi continues to be a great snarky companion and mouthpiece for exposition, but I would never have thought that I would care about the schemes of a background character like Administrator Moore. Having such a calculated individual with the ability to use the Force, even it is just a mind trick, adds a new layer to the overarching plans that the Emperor had in play. Further, Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 finally brings readers the Crimson Dawn auction for Han Solo. While the pacing is a bit rushed in this issue, it all makes up for it once the auction commences. Darth Vader is more than just an unstoppable force. The former Jedi understands schemes and influence more than many give him credit for, and Pak delivers on that in spades in the second half of the issue.

Overall while Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 may be a bit slow as it finds its place in the War of the Bounty Hunters event, I would be lying if I said it did not get me hyped for the next issue. Multiple issues have been leading up to the Dark Lord’s arrival at the auction, and now that it is here, I am on the edge of my seat to see how it all plays out. Pak’s ability to build tension has me bought in. Vader could certainly just walked into the auction and took Han Solo for himself. He defeated a summa-verinoth by himself, after all. However, fans know that Han Solo ends up in Jabba’s Palace. So the question is now, how does Darth Vader lose his price when it seems all but inevitable he will achieve his goal? Vader has been running through everyone and anyone who has gotten in his way across fourteen issues, but as the galaxy’s heroes and villains converge at the auction, there is no telling how it will go.

Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 is available now wherever comics are sold.

Star Wars: Darth Vader #14
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TL;DR

Overall while Star Wars: Darth Vader #14 may be a bit slow as it finds its place in the War of the Bounty Hunters event, I would be lying if I said it did not get me hyped for the next issue. Multiple issues have been leading up to the Dark Lord’s arrival at the auction, and now that it is here, I am on the edge of my seat to see how it all plays out.