In hopes of building excitement for a film whose success seemingly hinged on its popularity with the comic book crowd, a Star Wars series from Marvel Comics debuted ahead of the original movie's release, instantly creating a strong connection between the films and the graphic medium. When Disney purchased Lucasfilm in 2012, this allowed Marvel Comics to unveil an all-new series of titles, including a proper Star Wars series. Writer Kieron Gillen began writing the series in November of 2017, with Greg Pak set to take over with next month's issue #68. StarWars.com released a first look at the new creative team's debut issue, which includes art by Phil Noto.
The site confirmed that the new storyline takes place shortly before the events of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, noting, "Beginning with issue 68, which opens the 'Rebels and Rogues!' arc, we’ll find out what happens prior to Vader launching his hunt for Luke Skywalker. The story finds Luke and his friends launching a desperate mission to keep the Empire from finding the new rebel base, and sees our heroes off on a three-pronged attack: Han and Leia go undercover in a noir world of romance and danger, Luke and Artoo face off against the Executor in a single X-wing, and Chewie and Threepio (as unlikely a Star Wars duo as can be) team up for their own adventure."
Images from the book were previously teased at this year's Star Wars Celebration. You can head to StarWars.com to check out more preview images.
Gillen made the announcement earlier this year that his time in the galaxy far, far away was coming to an end.
"I have three issues left to write in ‘The Scourging of Shu-Torun.’ That’s issue 67, the end of my story, and I’ll be off," the writer shared in his newsletter. "No present plans to write anything else in Star Wars – I suspect I’ve said all I’ve wanted to about these characters in comics. At least in this period, anyway."
The writer has been a staple of the Star Wars line of comics in recent years, with his first entries in the franchise being the solo Darth Vader series. Gillen also helped co-create the Doctor Aphra series, scripting the character's debut 20 issues.
Phil Noto was previously known for crafting the art in the Poe Dameron series, while Pak has recently been writing various Star Wars: Age of Rebellion one-shots.0comments
Star Wars #68 hits shelves on July 10th.
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