Star Wars #6 (Marvel)

Issue #6 (December 1977): Is This The Final Chapter?

  • Writer/Editor: Roy Thomas
  • Artist/Storyteller: Howard Chaykin

In what’s starting to feel like a theme, we need to first address this cover. Last week, we were given a cover that was all about misdirection, and it must’ve worked (from a marketing perspective). I mean, of course it worked. Just look at the entire Silver Age. Anyway, take a look at this one. “See Luke Skywalker Battle Darth Vader!”

Well, I guess so, in a manner of speaking. I mean, Vader did chase down Luke’s X-Wing during the trench run, but they never actually “do battle.” I don’t think Luke even fires on Vader. And they certainly don’t have a lightsaber duel with a helpless Princess Leia cowering on the ground next to them. What a disservice to her character, especially since her tough, independent demeanor is actually represented in these comics.

Are you prepared for the “soul-shattering climax”? I know I am…

This entire issue is devoted to the X-Wing assault on the Death Star. There’s a lot of grimacing faces in cockpits, exploding ships, and–of course–ostentatious narration.

Perhaps the most jarring discrepancy between the comics and the movie is this:

Page 2: Blue Squadron? Any proper nerd knows that Luke was Red Five and part of Red Squadron during the attack on the Death Star. Still, pretty rainbow.

Zoey: (after the X-Wings “lock S-foils in attack positions”) “NOW they look like X-Wings.” Yer darn right!

Page 3: In order to bring the reader up to speed, we get a little creative use of recycled dialogue. This is much more preferable to the long-winded narration we usually get.

Page 6: Like this. This is a pretty intense sequence with some equally “intense” narration. We particularly enjoyed the “terrors of the damned,” the “hot winds of hell,” and the heat that “licks the streaking spacecraft.”

Zoey: “Ew! They lick the X-Wing??”

Page 11: This is touching. Remember Porkins? Of course you do. The comedically named pilot who also happened to be overweight? Get it? It’s funny because he’s fat.

Anyway, we find out that he and Biggs were apparently pretty close. And that his nickname was Piggy. Get it? Piggy?

…moving on.

Page 17: Poor Biggs gets about 4 pages to grieve for Piggy, though. Kaboom.

You know the rest of the story. Han Solo saves Luke, Luke saves the rebellion, Chewie gets the shaft at the awards ceremony, and our heroes live to fight another day. Cue John Williams score. End of film adaptation.

This is exciting! With the next issue, we move into uncharted water. New stories! New worlds! New characters! And you know what that means, right?

Jaxxon!!

 

 

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