Review – Star Wars: Rebel Heist #1 (of 4) (Dark Horse Comics)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Marco Castiello
Release Date: 30th April 2014
Their names require no further explanation. Luke. Leia. Han. Chewie. Iconic characters in every sense of the word. Now I’m as big of a Star Wars fan as anyone else who grew up in the late 70s and early 80s, and watching those classic movies I always found my mind drifting to thoughts of what it would be like to actually live in that world. Not necessarily being the heroes themselves, but simply being able to stand by and watch as they perform their inspirational deeds.
Well, as luck would have it, that thought is exactly the inspiration for Rebel Heist, a new four-part series from Mind MGMT writer Matt Kindt. This series is all about perspective, and seeing just how the iconic heroes we grew up with were perceived by those they fought alongside. And in this first issue, we are introduced to our narrator Jan, a would-be Rebel who finds himself – in his very first mission, no less – working alongside legendary hero, smuggler and “scoundrel”, Han Solo.
Kindt’s writing is of its usual high quality here, with Jan’s narration as he observes and tries to figure Han out being perfectly pitched. Jan’s emotions slowly develop throughout the issue as we see him go from initially being star-struck, then feeling empowered by Solo’s confidence, and then ultimately being left a more than a little disillusioned with his hero. And, rather then feeling forced, these changes all flow fluidly and naturally as the pages flick by.
Castiello’s artwork is solid throughout, too; everything just feels right, y’know? The ships, the weapons, the aliens, it all has that distinctive Star Wars vibe. Granted, some of the faces may be a little doughy, and the occasional expression can hard to read, but the action scenes flow beautifully and the splash pages are brilliantly detailed.
Kindt’s writing shows his genuine love for the franchise, and he seems to take great pleasure in delivering a terrific (but cruel) gag surrounding a certain well-known spaceship, toying with our expectations beautifully. Aside from the strong characterisation and unique first-hand insight into this world, there’s also clearly a great story being set up here too, with the definite feeling throughout that everything isn’t quite as it appears.
I’ll be honest, this is a series that won me over with its premise before I’d even picked it up, but I’m happy to say that the execution definitely doesn’t disappoint. This is an eye-opening and creative take on the well-established Star Wars Universe, and a perfect opportunity for the inner fanboy (or fangirl) in all of us to get up close and personal with our iconic heroes.
Oh, and, if you want to find out a little more about the series before picking it up, check out our exclusive interview with writer Matt Kindt, where we delve a little deeper into the story and the inspiration behind it.
The writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson (aka Ceej)
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