Marvel; $5.99

After the king of Mon Cala was murdered, the Mon Calamari people have joined the Rebellion and are using their fleet for the cause. Though they suffered significant losses, the Rebellion is celebrating the victory of building a fleet and gaining numbers.

Leia is at the Rebel Base with Mon Mothma, their ally Queen Trios of Shu-Torun, and others, to take a break from the war effort and enjoy the win. Han, C-3PO, and Chewie are on the Outer Rim making deals and evading bounty hunters – business as usual – and Luke is part of an entertaining aerial show at the base. Of course, that’s when Darth Vader shows up and things go terribly wrong.

Several important books came out this week with character and title reintroductions, major storyline endings, or milestone issue numbers. In my opinion, Star Wars #50 was the best one.

Star Wars has steadily been a great book since it’s reintroduction and of the 50 issues in this current series, I enjoyed every major arc with just one exception. In issue 50, we see the Rebels finally taking a breather after a brutal battle just to be beaten down again by the Empire. But their spirits are not deflated, but rather invigorated to press on.

The Star Wars comic doesn’t get bogged down with self-analysis and deconstruction like some superhero books. Instead it tells complex, strategic stories that express the characterization through action. For this particular issue that’s seen in Leia’s reaction to praise over the victory and a really unsettling moment with Vader that reinforces how frightening and cold he can be. Kieron Gillen did a great job on this issue.

Salvador Larroca’s art with GURU-eFX colors is outstanding. His character renderings are so accurate I feel like I’m watching another movie set during the original trilogy. The eye may be drawn to the main characters themselves, but all around them are equally detailed images whether it’s the splash in a glass of wine, a dank bar, or a full-on space battle.

This issue does carry a higher price, but it’s larger than usual with the primary story and a backup piece that fills in some background for a character who plays a pivotal role in this issue. It also includes a cool gallery of the covers for the first 50 issues. Here’s to 50 more with this creative team.

-Amanda Sheriff