A New Look at Star Wars via Webcomic Style

When I was younger my family had just moved again.  We were staying at a hotel and to alleviate the boredom of looking at generic walls and network TV my dad took my brothers and me to run some errands. At our last stop there in the checkout line was something that changed my life: a VHS set of the Original Star Wars Trilogy. That night my brothers and I watched A New Hope and I was hooked.  Since then Star Wars has held a special place in my heart.

Even if you are not a fan of Star Wars you have to at least appreciated the effect it has had on pop culture. What really struck home for me was the attitude that Star Wars universe has towards religion.  When A New Hope was released there were two other contenders in the world of Sci-Fi: Star Trek and Doctor Who.  While I am a fan of both of these fandoms their attitudes towards religious, or anyone with any form of religious tendencies, is often condescending at best.  But in Star Wars religion and mysticism still have a place in the galaxy. There are naysayers, like Han Solo who called the Force “a lot of simple tricks and nonsense” and Admiral Motti who talks smack about the Force to Vader.  But when Motti gets Force choked it is the first time the viewer sees the Force being used for something (abet a villainous act) not just being described as an all connecting energy field.

And it is awesome!

The Force is something that is unseen but extremely powerful, especially to the practitioners of it; much like faith.

So, as I have stated before Star Wars has a very special place in my heart that not even the badness of the Prequels could destroy. (On an aside note, the cartoon Star Wars: The Clone Wars has done a great deal to fix the Prequels for me) So when Star Wars Episode Seven was announced I let out a fangirl squeal without shame. So in preparation for this grand even I have been rewatching the Original Trilogy, and rereading all my favorite Expanded Universe a.k.a. Legends books (Mara Jade I will miss you!).

Even after these delicious delights I want more! So I started looking at the newer additions to the Star Wars Cannon like Heir to the Jedi and A New Dawn. In my many wonderings of the internet I stumbled across an awesome addition the Star Wars funness.

Earlier this year Lucasfilm teamed up with Korean writer and artist Hong Jacga to work on a webcomic entitled Star Wars: Before the Force Awakens. It took off in South Korea and fortunately for those of us that do not read or speak Korean Line Webtoon (www.webtoons.com) began to offer an English translation of the comic in October.

I cannot recommend this web comic enough. They plan to retell Episodes IV through VI, but it is not a strict copy and paste – there is a new layer of nuance as we follow Luke Skywalker on his journey and how he experiences things. The artwork is what really drew me into this retelling. Whimsical is what comes to mind. As it is a digital comic it allows for a non-traditional format; you simply scroll down for the chapter, following the art as the story unfolds.  The scene where Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader face off for the final time, there’s an extra layer of intensity that just was not there in the movie. Also there is a subtle display of how devastated Leia Organa is and how she is trying not to choke up as she talks about how Alderaan is no longer existing when Luke and Han Solo come to her rescue.

I now wait eagerly for the next update. Go read it, now!

Orginal Korean : http://webtoon.daum.net/webtoon/viewer/30177

English Translation: http://www.webtoons.com/en/sf/Star%20Wars/list?title_no=544

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Image courtsety of Webtoon

 

About Olivia Bushey

A current student of Library and Information Studies, who creeps along in dusty archives learning about the past and making sure things are not lost to time and neglect. A cradle Catholic who geeks out over her faith, sci-fi, fantasy, and meeting other people who do the same.
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