A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… Marvel lost the rights to make ‘Star Wars’ comics and now that Disney owns both Marvel and Lucas we are able to benefit from the House of Ideas once again having the most infamous science fiction space opera of all time back in its fold. Fans of the Dark Horse series may be a little confused by that because it has been a smashing success for years with overall a set of positive reviews following each iteration that explores further corners of the ‘Star Wars’ universe.

In order to redeem the switch over to be worth it, Marvel had to come out swinging and I am going to be completely honest when I say that this could be some of Jason Aaron’s best work to date. Obviously there is a lot of hype happening around what is now being deemed as the first major comic release that is canon and you have to be curious what they would be doing. Continuing shortly after the events of the destruction of the first Death Star, we are given a solid plot that throws us right into the action while still maintaining the voices and look of the characters.

Speaking of the look, John Cassaday blew me away. The entire book was illustrated quite well but my favorite two shots were the first look at Han Solo and Darth Vader. When Solo first came onto panel, I swear I could hear Harrison Ford speaking through the book. The combination of dialogue and Cassaday’s artwork meshed perfectly together to give us what I believe is going to be an extremely solid continuation of the original film.

While I can honestly say that I’ve had this much fun reading a Marvel comic lately (they’ve been putting out a lot of great work outside of their mainstream teams and multitude of crossover issues), I cannot remember the last time I’ve read this great of a science fiction comic. Even ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’ which I’ve quite enjoyed, has not nearly reached the heights of enjoyment that the first ‘Star Wars’ issue was able to deliver.

It will be quite clear to fans that the issue takes place between ‘A New Hope’ and ‘The Empire Strikes Back,’ and you can even feel the characters being in that state of their development from each page. If a movie had been done set in this time period, it honestly feels as if this would be the start of that movie, with Cassaday’s art being perfectly rendered on character expressions and the feel it brings. The art and writing complement each other so well that I really couldn’t imagine another artist being involved at this point and we’re only a single issue in.

The highest rating I can give a comic on the site is a perfect score and I would actually raise this one if possible. This took me back to the first run of the original trilogy and if this level of quality can continue, we are all in for a treat. The force is strong with this issue and this IS the series that you’re looking for.

Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: John Cassaday