Doctor Who: Who should be the 13th Doctor?

Peter Capaldi, the twelfth Doctor in the series (although maybe 13th if you count John Hurt’s “War Doctor”, who for the most part, wasn’t considered the Doctor by himself or his successors until it turned out he had done right all along) announced last night that he would be leaving Doctor Who at the end of 2017, opening the door for a replacement in 2018 (as well as a clean slate for new producer and head writer Chris Chibnall). Although the casting process has only just been, here’s some possibilities, including actors who were contenders for the role in the past, but were passed up for  whatever reason. It’s possible none of these will be cast at all-after all, the announcement of Matt Smith in 2009 was totally out of left field-but here’s some guesses anyway.

 

Paterson Joseph was apparently closely considered for the role of the eleventh Doctor, but was passed over in favor of Matt Smith. He previously appeared in Doctor Who’s Bad Wolf and Parting of the Ways as a different character, Rodrick, but he’s also of course appeared in several other British productions as well.

Ben Daniels was another ‘almost’ Doctor, this time for the twelfth. Recently, he’s been in the Exorcist remake, and X-wing leader General Merrick in Rogue One.

 

Hayley Atwell has expressed interest in the role, should they choose to cast a female Doctor for the first time. She’s of course well-known for her role as Peggy Carter in the Captain America films, as well as a short-lived TV series.

 

Ben Whishaw-the current Q in James Bond-is considered one of the current ‘favorites’ to replace Capaldi.

 

….and speaking of Bond, current Tanner Rory Kinear is also reportedly a contender.

 

Eddie Reymayne-recently of Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, as well as Theory of Everything, The Danish girl and numerous other recent films-is also reportedly interested in the role.

 

Rupert Grint-Ron Weasley of Harry Potter fame-has also expressed some interest in the role, perhaps he’d be the first “ginger” Doctor, as the Doctor’s always expressed an interest in having a redheaded incarnation.

Olivia coleman-current star of “Broadchurch”-another series by Chris Chibnall-is another likely contender. She previously appeared as an incarnation of Prisoner Zero in Matt Smith’s opener The Eleventh Hour, but in addition to “Broadchurch” she’s also worked in The Iron Lady, Hot Fuzz and various other programs and films.

Star Wars comics history-The wedding of Luke Skywalker and Mara Jade

Some spoilers below for the New Jedi Order/Dark Nest/Legacy of the Force novels.

In the 1999 “Hand of Thrawn” duology, Luke Skywalker proposed Marriage to Mara Jade, a former member of the Emperor’s Hand, a force-sensitive operative turned smuggler who originally wanted to kill Luke for depriving her of her Master (who she believed had a greater role in his death than he actually did). She first appeared in the novel “Heir to The Empire”, and proved popular with fans of the novels, and appeared in several of the sequel novels.

The HOTT also was Bantam’s swan song for their publishing of the franchise, with new publisher Del Rey announcing a shift. Instead of mainly publishing standalones and trilogies like Bantam did (although that’s largely what they’re doing these days), they would start out with an ambitious 20 part novel series, “The New Jedi Order”.

In-between this, Dark Horse set a new limited series, “Union”, which would chronicle the marriage.

The series is mainly goofy fun, with both Luke and Mara’s parties-made of both movie and original EU creations (including several by Michael Stackpole, who wrote the series) preparing for the wedding, including selecting dresses, spa-days, jitters….

and of course, bachelor parties!

Luke and Mara get two ceremonies, one a Jedi one (This is before AOTC firmly established Jedi didn’t get married, but since the Jedi Order in the EU at this point was a bit different than the old, it’s an easy thing to explain-and sort of is in the bottom panel here)

and a civil one:

Which is nearly crashed by former Imperials, because naturally it’s not Star Wars without a little bit of war in it:

But it all ends happily, at least for now. Luke and Mara eventually have many happy years together, and she gives birth to a son, although they still have to deal with the Yuzzhan Vong threat, and a few other bad guys. Unfortunately, Mara is unfortunately killed in the novel “Sacrifice”, part of the Legacy of the Force series.

However, Mara would soon be pretty much wiped from canon all together, sort of similar to another marriage made in comics with another redhead with the initials MJ: Spider-Man: One More Day by Joe Quesada:

…..But I won’t get into that now, and at least it’s because Disney wanted a clean slate for the sequel trilogy and didn’t involve any deals with the semi-Devil.

However, there’s still a bit of hope that some version of Mara still exists in Disney’s ‘new’ canon, as we’ve seen other EU characters-including those like Thrawn, be reintegrated into the series although in a different way. Plus there’s still a bit gap between Star Wars Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, where Luke is shown alone and self-exiled. So maybe Luke did marry someone, possibly a version of Mara Jade, in the new timeline. However, we’ll have to wait until this to find out, maybe:

Bond in Review: For Your Eyes Only

tchOriginally, “For Your Eyes Only” was going to be the Bond film that would follow “The Spy Who Loved Me”-something made clear by the end credits of that movie. However, the success of “Star Wars” prompted them to (extremely loosely) adapt “Moonraker” instead. After that film was released, FYEO was back on the table. However, perhaps due to negative critical reaction to Moonraker (although it was a box office success), the producers decided to bring Bond back to earth-literally-with a more traditional story, and one heavily based on Fleming material, specifically, Fleming’s short stories For Your Eyes Only and Risico, as well as a sequence from Live and Let Die (I won’t go into details, since I already have in another article).

The film begins with Bond, visiting his wife’s grave, before being called back to MI6 but then his helicopter is commandeered via remote control by a bald guy with a cat-obviously meant to be Blofeld,  but due to rights issues he’s never named (Blofeld’s basic look and white cat however were never in the original books and are pretty much fair game, although I’m a bit unclear how that worked in reverse with “Never Say Never Again”), but with both Tracey’s grave, and Blofeld sporting injuries very similar to the end of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the callback is very clear.

The scene is merely played for camp, with Blofeld sporting a cartoony accent that sounds like an attempt to mix his original “From Russia With Love” voice with Donald Pleasence, but not quite making it. He’s also got some strange lines, most notably the infamous: “We can do a deal! I’ll buy you a delicatessen…in stainless steel!”

However, the opening is one of the few sequences in the film that’s comparable in tone to the campy nature of pretty much every other Roger Moore Bond film. We then come to one of the more unique Bond openings, as singer Sheena Easton actually physically appears and sings the song among the usual footage of Bond, guns and girls.

It’s a pretty decent song, sort of following the lead of Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker as having a love song as the main title, which would continue with “Octopussy”‘s “All Time High” before Bond returned to rock/pop with View To A Kill and Living Daylights.

The movie’s main plot begins with sort of a Bond trope of a British ship being compromised (although this time by accident, more or less). This kind of plot point is used in Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, Spy Who Loved Me, and Moonraker, and although taking a break for a bit, it returns with a vengeance in “Tomorrow Never Dies”. In this case, it’s the St. Georges, which contains the ATAC Automatic Targeting Attack Communicator, used to coordinate submarines….and this sets in motion the plot, as Bond-teaming up with this film’s “Bond girl” Melina Havelock (The daughter of an archaeologist killed in the search for the ship) and Greek smuggler Columbo (Topol)-races across the Mediterannan to uncover the wreck of the Georges and recover the ATAC before it falls into the hands of the KGB, who are being aided by the film’s villain, Kristatos (Julian Glover). It’s definitely a bit different from the plots of both “Spy” and “Moonraker”, where the villains hoped to create Armageddon so people could live in the sea, or repopulate Earth with “perfect” people.

Glover is an actor well-known for villanous roles in media-having played the AT-AT Commander General Veers in The Empire Strikes Back, the multiple incarnations of the masked alien Scaroth in the Doctor Who serial “City of Death” and also the main villain Donovan in Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade. Initially, we’re led to believe he’s actually a good guy, helping to sponsor a talented young skying girl in  the Winter Olympics and appearing to aid Bond in his search for the ATAC and the murderers of the Havelocks. However, he’s mainly trying to frame fellow smuggler Columbo, and his true, more sadistic side is unveiled in the film’s half-way point. Glover plays both sides of the character well.

Equally and entirely sadistic is Locque, his main henchman. Like a great deal of Bond henchmen, he’s rather quiet (although not mute). Although not quite a strongman like Jaws or Oddjob, he’s still an intimidating presence with his cold stares, only really smiling when he runs over Columbo’s mistress Lisl (played by the late Cassandra Harris).

He’s also the subject of one of the film’s best moments-and one of the coldest kills by Roger Moore’s Bond in any of his films-as Moore kicks his car off a cliff. 

However, we do have a somewhat more ‘strongman’ henchman in Eric Kreigler, a KGB agent assigned as the go-between the KGB and Kristatos. Bond’s main confrontation with him is a thrilling winter sports ski chase.

Future “Game of Thrones” star Charles Dance also has a small role as a minor henchman, Claus.

Girl-wise, we’ve got Carole Bouquet as the Bond girl. Her character is given better motivation-and acting I think as well-than Anya and Holly before her, and Carole Bouquet plays her as both really sympathetic but also a bit badass as well. She also doesn’t really fall for Bond until the end of the film either, which is a bit of a departure.

Speaking of falling for Bond, Kristatos’s ward Bibi-a kind of more bubbly, dumb Bond girl certainly does. Bond pretty much rebuffs her advances (and with good reason too-she’s in her late teens or early twenties and Roger Moore is in his mid 50s at this point, so that would just be weird). She’s kind of one of the goofier aspects of the film, but Moore’s reactions to her relentless flirting are some of the film’s best laughs, and she’s not quite annoying as Mary Goodnight a few films ago.

Finally Bond-girl wise we have Cassandra Harris in a small role as Countess Lisl, Columbo’s mistress and collaborator,  who has a brief fling with Bond before she’s murdered by Locque. Harris plays it pretty well, although we don’t see too much of her and it’s not quite clear why Lisl is faking an accent. Fun fact about Harris-before her death, she was married to future Bond Pierce Brosnan, and it was she who introduced him to the producers. This led to Brosnan eventually almost replacing Moore in 1986, however due to TV contract things Brosnan couldn’t play it at the time. He eventually of course got his chance in 1995.

Gadget-wise, the film is a bit light, especially compared to the previous two films. In fact, Bond’s original Lotus is taken out of action early on when the bad guys attempt to break in, triggering it’s self-destruct!

Apart from that, the ATAC itself and a radio watch which really isn’t used that much except for the film’s comic relief ending, we really just get the Identigraph which Bond uses to identify Locque. It’s used entirely in Q’s lab, which, like in many of the other films, shows off a large group of gadgets being developed, but not used by Bond in the field at all.

Speaking of that watch, it’s used in a pretty hilarious scene that closes the film, in which Margeret Thatcher-England’s PM at the time (played by a look-alike actress in this of course) congratulates Bond on the sucess of his mission, but ends up speaking with Melina’s parrot instead while she and Bond have a “moonlight swim.” It’s kind of interesting that the most serious of the Moore films is pretty much book-ended by goofy scenes-The Blofeld stuff at the beginning and then this.

Music-wise, like “Live and Let Die” and the “Spy Who Loved Me” For Your Eyes Only doesn’t have John Barry as composer, instead using the talents of “Rocky” and “Karate Kid” composer Bill Conti. Although a bit different than Barry’s talents, Conti’s music really kind of fits the “Winter sports” feel of the middle of the movie.

 

Overall, FYEO was a pretty good return to form for the series to it’s espionage roots and more serious tone, with Moore being able to adapt to it pretty well. Although by this point he’s aging and starting to lose some of his credibility as a convincing Bond, he still gives it his best in my opinion, proving that he’s got some dramatic teeth beyond the One liners. Next “Octopussy” would attempt to put a bit more comedy back into the series, while still having a semi-serious tone….

James Bond in Review: Moonraker

In 1977, the Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me” restored faith in the franchise after a period of uncertainty, with the departure of co-producer Harry Saltzman and the somewhat dissiapointing critical and box office reaction to “The Man With The Golden Gun”. “Spy” largely restored a more cinematic Bond feel, with a larger widescreen ratio, more exotic locations, and the gadgets and over-the-top villains Bond had become to be known for, as well as a more likeable take on the character by Moore himself, who seemed to be trying too hard to replicate Connery’s ‘edge’ in his first two films.

However, there’s often too much of a good thing. Originally, “Spy” was going to be followed by “For your Eyes Only” (Which did eventually get made, one film over). However, it didn’t quite work out that way…

A little film called “Star Wars” came out, and of course cinematic science fiction was super popular again. Star Trek was in the middle of getting a second TV show when suddenly it’s priorities shifted to make a movie series to compete with Wars. Innovative science fiction films such as Close Encounters of the Third Kind and Alien were huge hits. Various derivative works and parodies were made-and Bond-which had often used popular genres of the time for inspiration-just had to get a piece of that pie too. Hence “FYEO” was pushed back, and “Moonraker” was put in it’s place. The film, in it’s third act, takes Bond into Space, complete with laser pistols and laser-firing space shuttles, to fight the bad guy onboard a space station. It even ends with Bond saving Earth at the last minute by being a good shot, something sort of like Luke Skywalker’s “One in a million” shot in Star Wars.  Moonraker’ station even has even got it’s own fancy laser, although nothing on the Death Star scales.

As I’ve mentioned in my analysis of the novel, the Moonraker novel is actually somewhat closer to the film Goldeneye, with a bad guy wanting to get revenge on London using a nuke. However, apart from the name, Hugo Drax is pretty much entirely different in the film. He’s potrayed as a villain with pretty much the exact same plot as the previous film’s Stromberg-but with one exception-instead of the sea, he wants to create a utopia in space, and eventually repopulate Earth with ‘pure’ humans. His sense of humor and attitude is a bit more droll than Stromberg as well. He’s actually one of the film’s brighter spots.

Like his villain, a lot of the elements of the film copy “Spy’s” (It’s by the same director, who also directed the large scale Bond You Only Live Twice which also carried many of the same tropes). A vessel vanishes, Bond teams up with an agent from another country after some initial mistrust, and of course they’re pursued by Jaws, who is potrayed as far more of a joke here. He’s got one really pretty good scene-when he sneaks up on Bond’s female alley Manuela during a Carnivale celebration in Rio-which, unfortunately for him (But fortunate for Manuela and Bond himself), is not only broken up by Bond, but also revelers constantly entering the alley.

However, the rest of the film he’s pretty much poorly used. There’s the opening segment where he falls into the circus tent, a sort of poorly choreographed and fake-looking battle atop cable cars in Rio:

Whico of course leads to Jaws crashing, and then falling in love with a local girl, Dolly:

Who accompanies him to the Moonraker station, and is ultimately responsible for him helping Bond out when it starts to become clear that Drax may have no further use for him once they’re plans are complete, and leading to of course the moment where Jaws speaks his only line:

There’s of course some other silly moments too, which sort of hurt the film’s credibility further, such as the infamous Gondola chase, which ends with a moment that’s mainly intended to evoke the “dazed onlooker” scene in Spy Who Loved Me. It even has the same guy drinking in it (He’d also appear one more time in For Your Eyes Only during the ski chase). Plus to add to the lunacy, there’s a pigeon doing a double take.

The most silly element of the film is of course the final act, where Bond actually goes into space to Drax’s space station. There’s actually some decent model work here, not quite on Star Wars level but almost as good as Atlantis and Liparus in the other film.

But of course there’s somewhat undermined by the attempts by the actors to ‘act’ weightless which kind of come of as silly, and of course the space battle outside with astronauts with jetpacks and lasers. This isn’t any future stuff, by the way: It’s taking place in 1979. 

 

Like with “Spy” there’s a lot of nods to various other films in the music: The Romeo and Juliet theme when Jaws meets Dolly, small nods to Close Encounters and 2001’s theme as Drax’s stuff, and the magnificent Seven theme when Bond is in south America trying to locate Drax’s HQ.

John Barry returns to the series after a one film absence, however a lot of his score seems a bit more subtle than in the earlier films. The “007” theme-often played in action scenes in the Connery films-makes it’s final appearance here during the Q boat chase in the Amazon, but it does seem somewhat subdued as well. Barry’s best track is the Moonraker theme itself. Instead of using the ‘space theme’ he previously used for For You Only Live Twice and Diamonds Are Forever, here instead he’s given a somewhat more ominous and majestic-sounding melody. However, Shirley Bassey’s title tune here is the weakest of her three, although it kind of works well in the film’s romantic scenes in it’s non-lyrical version.

 

Bond girl wise, we first meet Corrine, Drax’s assistant, who, helping Bond dig up dirt on her boss, unfortunately meets a bad end in one of the film’s most dramatic,  and well-done scenes (if of course, kind of disturbing as well). Along with the carnivale segment (with a brief Bond girl, Manuela), it almost seems out of place in this film.

Of course the major one is Holly Goodhead (Lois Chiles). She sort of comes off a bit bland next to her predecessor Anya in persona (if not by acting ability), although Lois Chiles does what she can with the material.

 

So in closing, Moonraker’s sort of a mixed bag. It’s got some well-done moments but it’s kind of let down a lot by it’s silliness and camp, and the toning-up of Jaws and the somewhat subdued score, as well as pretty much being a space version of Spy Who Loved Me. Things would be toned down of course-and come much closer to the original Fleming material for the next Bond, the delayed “For Your Eyes Only”.

Metal Gear profiles-Major Zero

Zero-real name David Oh-was sort of the mastermind behind many of the events in the Metal Gear saga. Although the story really starts with the Philosophers-a group of rich citizens dedicated to uniting the world-Zero later recreates that organization as the Patriots, and sets many later events into motion, including Big Boss’s fall into darkness, and the creation of Solid Snake and his brothers.

Zero’s story pretty much begins in World War II, as he was a member of the British commando team Layforce, and worked closely with the Joy, or the Boss, the special forces commander who led the Cobra Unit and-in the universe of Metal Gear-were instrumental in helping to win World War II. She also later trained John/Jack, who would later be dubbed Naked Snake. He later joined the British secret service MI6, where he aided in the defection of Russian scientist Sokolov.

However, in order to ease tensions after the Cuban Missile Crisis, Sokolov is returned to the USSR. Eventually, Zero forms his own special forces group-FOX-and one of their first missions-code named the “Virtuous Mission” is to rescue Sokolov, who is rumored to be developing a weapon. Zero sends FOX operative Naked Snake on the mission to rescue Sokolov. However, things go eschew when it appears the Boss has defected, and one of the nukes she brought as a sign of goodwill toward rogue Russian colonel Volgin is used to destroy Sokolov’s facility.

Snake is deployed again by Zero, for Operation Snake Eater-but if they screw this one up, it’s possible they will be executed, as blame for the first mission’s failure is based. Snake’s mission is to kill his mentor, destroy Sokolov’s weapon the Shagohod and also once again attempt to rescue Sokolov. He advises Snake several times during the mission, and also displays a peculiar sense of humor and concern over Snake. We also learn he’s a big James Bond fan.

After Snake accomplishes two of those objectives, it turns out the Boss was on an undercover mission all along to steal a microfilm from Volgin.

After an appearance of debatable canon in Portable ops where he is suspected of staging a rebellion due to elements of the Fox Unit going rogue, Zero and Big Boss, along with the other members of operation Snake Eater form the Patriots. Before she died, the Boss related that she wanted to make the world whole. The Patriots/Cipher were formed as an attempt to realize that dream. However, Zero and Big Boss’s views on the subject differed. Zero felt the world could be controlled by information, Big Boss wanted a world where soldiers could be free to fight for what they believed in. Zero also begins to lose his grip on reality, becoming more greedy and paranoid.

Fearing he might lose the support of his friend, Zero-now calling himself “Cipher” as well-commisions Doctor Clark to clone Big Boss, in a project known as Les Infant Terribles, which results in the creation of three sons of Big Boss-David (Solid Snake) Eli (Liquid Snake) and George (Solidus Snake). This leads to the final rift between the two, and Big Boss flees to Costa Rica to form his mercenary group, Militaries san frontieras with Kaz Miller.

Zero works out a deal with Miller, which in turn helps Miller help to expand MSF, although Big Boss is unaware of Zero’s involvement. Zero also covertly aids the Peace Walker project, and inserts a spy into Big Boss’s ranks-the girl known as Paz, who posed as a college student wishing for peace, but was actually a Cipher agent.

After the Peace Walker incident, Paz took control of MSF’s Metal Gear ZEKE, and threatened to use it’s nuke and frame MSF is Big Boss did not rejoin Cipher.

Although Paz is defeated, things start to go out of control for Zero. His second-in-command, Skull Face, captures Paz and uses her as a complicated trap, which ends with the destruction of MSF, Paz’s death, and Big Boss falling into a coma from injuries after a helicopter crash. Learning his location from Paz,Skull Face also poisons Zero with an early strain of a parasite, causing him to begin to fall into a vegetative state, dealing a sort of coup to Zero.

Zero, with events falling out of his control, starts to take action to defeat his former XO and protect his former friend-despite their past differences, as well as to ensure his own legacy, and the Boss’s. He hides Big Boss in a hospital in Cyprus, and also begins to create a decoy/body double for Big Boss-Venom Snake-to protect the real one, with the help of Revolver Ocelot. (It’s Venom who eventually defeats Skull Face). He also has Donald Anderson-the former SIGINT from Operation Snake Eater-develop the Patriots AI system to ensure that his version of the Boss’s dream is realized. Finally, he collapses into a vegatative state sometime in the early 80’s, although many assume he is still in control of the Patriots. His location is hidden.

Eventually, the Patriots AI system begins to take more and more control over the world and information, especially during the time of Solid Snake. However, it begins to deviate from the will of the Boss and Zero. When it’s eventually defeated due to the actions of Solid Snake, Otacon, Sunny Emmerich, Revolver Ocelot and Naomi Hunter, not only does Big Boss awake from a near death state (sent into that by Solid Snake nine years earlier), but Zero’s location is revealed. Big Boss tracks down his old ‘frenemy’, and the two meet Solid Snake at Arlington cemetery.

There, Big Boss cuts off Zero’s life support (and he dies as well), ending the cycle of evil they created by misinterpreting the will of the Boss.

Star Wars comics history-Prelude to Rebellion

In 1998, Dark Horse launched a new Star Wars ongoing title, with no subtitle (although it would eventually get one-“Republic”-around the time of Attack of the Clones). This comic would also have a different focus from the other comics-instead of happening thousands of years before (Tales of the Jedi) during the original trilogy timeframe (Several of the miniseries) or post-ROTJ (X-wing Rogue Squadron, the Thrawn trilogy adaptation Dark Empire etc.), this one would tie in with the upcoming prequel movies, and feature the adventures of the Jedi Council member, Ki Adi Mundi, who along with Obi-Wan, Anakin (briefly) Yoda and Mace Windu was pretty much the only other council member from the films who actually kind of spoke at all.

 

The initial storyline was “Prelude to Rebellion”, in which Ki-Adi-Mundi’s family becomes involved in the affairs of Jabba the Hutt-specifically “Ephant Mon”, one of Jabba’s top lieutenants with a funny name.

However, you did read that right-Ki-Adi has a family-and one with five wives and eight kids!!

 

This of course, presents a bit of an odd continuity error, as it’s made quite clear in the last two prequels that Jedi are not allowed to get married or reproduce-Part of Anakin’s descent into darkness is built with his defiance of the code, and his premonitions by Padme drive him to take the actions that will mold him into Darth Vader. So why does Mundi-a council member, no less, have a family-and before the continuity overhau

l by Lucasfilm, how was this explained?

The real world explanation is kind of simple, Lucas hadn’t quite made clear the Jedi’s non-attachments at the time, and so writing Jan Strand was pretty much able to create his own backstory for Mundi.

However, when AOTC came out, a piece of retro-active continuity was introduced during one of the later issues set during the Clone Wars. Basically, Mundi is given an exception since his planet has a low male birth rate. We also learn that his family was killed during a Clone Wars battle, effectively writing them out as well.

Despite being a member of the Jedi and serving the Republic, Ki-Adi Mundi actually works to keep his planet neutral in the series, which frustrates his family, including his daughter, who joins a gang and becomes caught up in Ephant Mon’s schemes.

Although the storyline ends with Mundi rescuing his daughter and becoming a member of the council, it hints that Jabba has ties with the Trade Federation…who apparently are up to no good.

These comics also have a back up tale, Vow of Justice, which deals with an adventure of a younger Ki-Adi-Mundi as he first joins the Jedi and deals with raiders on his planet.

Future story arcs would also feature Ki-Adi, although eventually the focus of the monthly title would switch to “grey” Jedi Quinlan Vos, a character ‘sort of’ created for the comics (But based on a background character in The Phantom Menace), which I will cover in later articles.

 

 

 

Star Wars comics history-The Manga saga

In 1998, Dark Horse published English adaptations of four Star Wars ‘manga (Japanese comics, often featuring a ‘big eyes’ small ones cartooning style)-based on the original trilogy. Although the covers were by American manga artist Adam Warren, the interiors were all done by different artists.

 

The original one was by Hisao Tamaki. Although of course beholden to the source material (It’s special edition, for example) for it’s dialogue, the comics certainly used inventive layouts and some artistic licence. Leia for instance has a slightly different hairstyle with bangs and loose hair from the ‘buns’ and is seen crying when Alderaan is destroyed.

 

  

In some ways, they’re preferable to the regular adaptations, which often were done at the time of the movie’s release, somewhat rushed and using mostly just the scripts and publicity stills as their source, and hence we end up with stuff like this:

 

 

(Al Williamson of course is a good artist, but there is a heavy bit of photo sourcing and mistakes here-He accidentally swapped the looks of Piett and Ozzell, mainly)

And they certainly add a bit more fun to some of the film’s more comic moments too:

 

“Empire” followed, with a somewhat more ‘rough’ looking style, and a decidely human looking Chewbacca. The artist was Toshiki kudo.

 

 

 

It was “Return of the Jedi” however which had the most radical style change, with the characters sporting a more intense, exaggerated look by Shin-Ichi Morimoto.

 

The final adaptation of the films was “Phantom Menace”. TPM was done by Kia Asamiya, who is one of the manga artists who has sort of crossed over to some American projects, as he was the artist on Uncanny X-men for a while, and has also worked on Batman. He’s also well known for his own work such as Martian Sucessor Nadesico, Silent Mobius and Steam Detectives. He also did the cover work for Dark Horse’s reprint as well.

 

You might’ve noticed that several of the pages are flipped opposite to their angles in the films-this is in fact because Japanese is often read back to front, rather than front to back, and a lot of manga, when it’s adapted, is ‘flipped’ to better conform to Western reading styles (although ‘unflipped’ versions of manga are certainly available.)