Overview

Darth Maul: Death Sentence #1

Review

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Darth Maul: Death Sentence #1

Credits

  • Words: Tom Taylor
  • Art: Bruno Redondo
  • Colors: Michael Atiyeh
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jul 25, 2012

New legs, and a new comic. Tying in to his return on the recent series of The Clone Wars is this look at the return of the horned hard man, Darth Maul. We don’t discover where he’s been, or how he returned to life and civilization just yet, although the opening text page fills in the details. However, it did make me want to see more of this backstory. Just how did Maul’s brother Savage Opress find him? How did he repair his mind and body? Those questions have been answered in Season 4 of The Clone Wars however, and it does make me curious to see them answered there.

Maul was always the most intriguing character from the Star Wars prequels, with great visual appeal and mystery in his corner. It’s pretty exciting that the Sith Lord has returned from the dead, and it’s good to see that it’s not just superheroes who can pull that off.

Taylor has expanded on Maul’s characterization, much he like he has done with that other strong, silent type Boba Fett. It would be far too easy to rely on a few action scenes and action hero one-liners to make Maul cool, but thankfully, there is a greater depth at work here than seen in his solo film appearance. Of course, that’s necessary for a character who’s headlining his own four issue mini-series, and nostalgic fans of the prequels will want to grab this.

Redondo’s work in these pages is stellar. He has the eye of a blockbuster director and plays with panel arrangements and motion to bring forth exciting page after page. He also doesn’t skimp on the details and Star Wars demands a lot of details from vehicles to costumes to weapons. The scene in the bustling Coruscant has a few familiar faces too. Yoda resembles the puppet version before the CGI makeover as seen in the recent Blu-Ray editions, and Samuel L. Jackson is present in the portrayal of Mace Windu, as seen when the Council sends three Jedi to ascertain why a mining magnate has placed a bounty on the brothers' thorny heads, and just how he knows of Maul's return.

Redondo’s use of facial expressions give us great insight into characters who only have a few lines, and uses silhouettes, bared teeth, and dangerous eyes to make the two brothers as terrifying as can be. Maul and Opress fight as brothers in arms; arms which wield dual lightsabers of course, and the use of more than just swift moves, but also darkness and deception, as are the Sith ways, go a long way to bringing the menace.

Darth Maul is back. It may not be good news for those in his way, but it's good news for those who want to see the character get the spotlight he deserves.

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