Star Wars has been a driving force in fiction for decades. It is one of the most recognizable and celebrated pieces of pop culture history and it shows no signs of slowing down. From films, video games, and novels to fan films cosplay, and conventions, there are very few pieces of fiction that have been as influential as Star Wars. One of the major pieces of the rich history of Star Wars is of course the comics. Star Wars comic books have been expanding on the lore for a generation and with such a major back catalog it can be decidedly difficult to find the greatness within. We wanted to put together a list for those of you who might be looking for their Star Wars fix.
So here we go…
Star Wars: Dark Empire
Here is an example from the early days of Dark Horse’s control of the Star Wars canon. It shows us the glory of what could be done in the galaxy far, far away. We see what happens when Luke Skywalker bows before the Emperor (reborn), and becomes his dark apprentice. We meet-up with pretty much all of our favorites from the original trilogy, as they go up against not only the evil Empire, but the mighty Luke Skywalker. There are twists and turns and betrayals. Over all, it is one of the most highly regarded pieces of the Star Wars canon and for good reason.
Thrawn Trilogy (Heir to the Empire Trilogy)
Timothy Zahn brought the trilogy of novels known as the Thrawn Trilogy to the world of Star Wars fandom between 1991 and 1993. They were an important addition to the canon in the days when there wasn’t a new Video Game or Sequel Trilogy film every year (can you even imagine?). The story picked up after the Return of the Jedi, and introduced the incredible Grand Admiral Thrawn. He is a red-eyed, blue alien who is a real thorn in the side of the Rebellion. The novels were adapted, in 1995, by Dark Horse Comics into an 18-issue run which brings the Heir to the Empire to life with stunning art.
Star Wars Tales
Remember the 1990’s? What a wild time. Dark Horse still had the Star Wars license and they were looking to breathe new life into their stories. That’s when they came up with the idea for Star Wars Tales, a 32-issue series that wasn’t afraid to push the boundaries of the universe. It had stories that featured Han Solo fighting off the undead alongside Chewbacca, and stories that focused on a droid Jedi named Skippy. Every issue had someone for everyone since they all contained a few short stories. Be warned, the stories can get weird from time to time, but if you give them a chance you will find something to love in the pages these issues.
Marvel’s Star Wars (2015)
Not everyone will be eager to agree with us here, but Marvel’s new turn on expanding the lore of the mythos is actually pretty great. It launched in the months leading into The Force Awakens and is an attempt to fill in some of the time after A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. We catch up with Luke, Leia, Han, and Chewbacca as well as Darth Vader and accompany them on all sorts of adventures across the galaxy. The great Jason Aaron took on the writing duties in the early months with a stable of incredible artists that did an amazing job of making each panel feel like something pulled straight from the original Trilogy. The series is still going and has had some great moments. We recommend checking it out, you won’t be disappointed.
Star Wars means something different to all of us. We have our own interpretations of everything that has been made within the universe, whether that be the new canon or Legends. We all have our own favorites, and we all have those stories we don’t like at all. Whether you feel like we missed something, or you don’t agree with our choices, the beauty is that we all get to share Star Wars. It’s for everyone, and we’re lucky that there is so much out there to love. Get out there and read some comics. And as always, May the Force be with you.