Everything Goes Wrong In Star Wars: Target Vader #4
by Tony Thornley
There’s a saying about the best laid plans, and Valance and his crew of scoundrels might be thinking about the Star Wars universe equivalent in Star Wars: Target Vader #4. However, an old military acronym might be more appropriate – FUBAR- fouled up beyond all recognition…
Robbie Thompson, Stefano Landini, Neeraj Menon, Giada Marchisio, Federico Blee, and Joe Caramagna show it all go wrong.
The bounty hunters have brought a Star Destroyer down on Vader. They have him surrounded, their guns pointed at his head. He has fifteen minutes before he has backup. Valance’s bounty hunters are going to be lucky to last five…
While Thompson has treated Vader like a bogeyman for the last few issues, this issue shifts gears a bit. While its horror roots are still apparent, this issue is all about how underestimating an opponent can cause things to go wrong. Thompson leans into the Vader comics of the last four years, especially Kieron Gillen’s interpretation of the character. Vader is chilling and effective, using not just superior skill but also patience to pick of Valance’s crew one by one.
Making it more effective is a series of flashbacks. As each hunter faces Vader one on one, Thompson and Landini flash them back to the events that motivated their hatred of the Empire, using both the dialogue and visuals to connect us to the characters and feel for them. It makes each individual loss more effective and more emotional.
Landini and the trio of color artists do much more than make us feel for the characters. Landini’s fight choreography is great, and he makes special consideration of the non-human characters he draws. He makes them move the way they really would in life, not just like a human with extra arms, or extra bulk. His Vader is calm and efficient, with no movement wasted. It’s great work that makes for a visually striking issue.
The tables have turned, and it’s making for a great read.
Star Wars: Target Vader #4 is available now from Marvel Comics.