Bad news. My stack of unread comic books continues to grow larger and I’ve got no idea when I’m going to have time to read them all. Career and family obligations were the order of the day last week so I was lucky to catch up on a few comics and even stare longingly at the new video game I had just purchased. Such is life, I guess.
The Art of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
Lucasfilm LTD., Respawn Entertainment
Dark Horse Comics
Hey! It’s that video game I just mentioned!
There will be a separate video game review of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order coming later, I promise. I just have to log a few more hours with the game before I’m comfortable passing judgement on the work that took hundreds of people months, if not years, to complete.
I have a long history with Star Wars art books, going all the way back to 1983 to be exact. My parents took me to see Return of the Jedi and even sprung for the collectors edition magazine that was on sale in the theatre lobby. I still have it, tucked away in a bin somewhere, held together with scotch tape because I read the ever-loving hell out of it. As a kid, the book was amazing to me because the only thing better than Star Wars was MORE Star Wars and it was jammed packed with behind the scenes photos, interviews, and (most importantly) concept art.
Over the next several decades I always made sure to pick up the art books when I could. It’s safe to say that a fair few of them made their way onto my Christmas wishlists and now rest in a place of prominence on my bookshelf. The Art of Star Wars Jed: Fallen Order is another worthy addition to my shelf.
While paging through this book it’s fascinating to see how much of the concept art was fully realized and made its way into the game. In the interest of full disclosure, I didn’t go too far into the book so I can maintain a spoiler-free gaming experience for myself. There’s also something about Star Wars that makes it seem like all of the artists involved are bringing their A+ game to the work they’re producing for the game. I don’t doubt for a second that it can be incredibly stressful and time-consuming, but the gorgeous art is truly something to behold.
The great thing about this book is that it can be enjoyed independently of the game if you’re a Star Wars fan and if you’ve played the game and you want MORE of it, this book is something you owe it to yourself to check out.
The Witcher Omnibus
Paul Tobin (W)
Joe Querio, Piotr Kowalski, Max Bertolini, Dave Johnson, Dan Panosian, Stan Sakai, Duncan Fegredo, Simon Bisley, Mike Mignola (A)
Dark Horse Comics
Keeping with the video game theme, The Witcher III was the video game that was ruling my life all the way up until last week when I switched over to Star Wars. As a gamer, I am perpetually late to the party and I only recently picked up The Witcher a few months ago due to it being on sale for $20. I’m not sure how much time I’ve sunk into the game and I’m not entirely sure I want to know.
Since a four-year-old game had caught my attention and got its hooks in me, I was ready to jump feet-first into a new franchise and consume all that I could in advance of the Netflix Original Series of The Witcher before its December 20th premiere.
Being fairly methodical, I started with the first Witcher collection of short stories…and didn’t quite care for it. Something about the text having been translated to English, I feel, made the stories lose some of their nuance. I’m wasn’t about to learn Polish to confirm my theory so I moved on to the (subtitled) Polish TV movie and I began to despair. It’s called The Hexer and I’m pretty sure Andrzej Sapkowski (creator of The Witcher) has disowned it.
But then, as if by some kind of miracle, Dark Horse Comics has delivered unto me The Witcher Omnibus. Collecting the various comic adaptations of The Witcher in one, easy to carry 400+ page tome this really fit the bill for me. I’m taking my time reading the book but what I’ve read thus far perfectly encapsulates what I loved about the game and the grizzled monster hunter Geralt. Dark Horse has really done some fantastic horror-themed comics over the years and these Witcher books are no exception.
So, if you’re jonesing for MORE Witcher stuff to help you make to through the next month until the show drops, put down your Gwent cards and pick up this book.
DC’s Young Animal
In case you missed it, DC’s Gerard Way curated Young Animal imprint dropped a stellar Green Lantern book last week. Billed as “a mind-bending mystery at the edge of the universe!” Far Sector feels just removed enough from the mainline DC Green Lantern books to be new and exciting.
Both the art and story are spectacular and I’m really going to be looking forward to this book each month. Check it out!