On the surface, last issue of Obi-Wan & Anakin centered around the titular Jedi traveling to Carnelion IV to respond to a distress signal sent to the Jedi Order. But the far more interesting aspect of this miniseries is being able to watch the seeds of doubt planted in Anakin’s mind early on, which would ultimately result in his turning to the Dark Side and becoming Darth Vader (spoiler alert!). One of the prequel’s gravest mistakes was not devoting enough time to Anakin’s slow descent into madness, so a miniseries taking place between The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones is a must-read for any Star Wars fan. Is it good?
Star Wars: Obi-Wan & Anakin #2 (Marvel Comics)
This issue picks right up where #1 ended, with Obi-Wan and Anakin confronted by a couple of hostiles who have no idea who the Jedi are, and don’t particularly care to find out. We’re quickly introduced to a war that’s being waged on the planet between two groups of inhabitants: the “Open” and the “Closed”. These two factions have an undying hatred for one another, to the point where even basic, common sense ideas are initially turned away if the other side agrees with it (what are they, Congress? Heyoo!).
How Anakin views this conflict is telling of his own inner turmoil, a point which is further hammered home by a flashback showing Palpatine beginning to get into Anakin’s mind that takes up the middle third of the issue.
Writer Charles Soule hits all the right notes writing Anakin and Obi-Wan, and they feel authentic and as close to their movie counterparts as possible. Here, Anakin is only 12 years old, and while he’s an impressionable, emotional person to begin with, being that age ramps up the intensity of those qualities tenfold. It’s clear Palpatine knows this and is trying to get into Anakin’s mind at an early age.
This miniseries feels reminiscient of an episode of The Clone Wars in that there’s an immediate conflict that the Jedi need to take care of, but the main story thread is less important in the grand scheme of things and is really there to serve as a backdrop for us to learn more about the Jedi.
Not to be outdone, artist Marco Checchetto sucks you into the Star Wars universe with beautiful backdrops and characters that look exactly like the actors who portrayed them in Episodes I-III. The new races are well rendered, too, and you really get the feeling of exploring these planets and locales alongside the Jedi.
However, despite all the good, I couldn’t help but get a feeling of “that’s it?” after completing the issue, which was a problem with the first one as well. Story progression wise, this is moving at a snail’s pace and while it’s interesting for a huge Star Wars nerd like myself as a supplement to the prequel trilogy, new fans or people who want a lot of action may not get as much out of it as I did.
Is It Good?
In a lot of ways, this is Star Wars done perfectly—an interesting mix of the science fiction aspects of exploring new worlds and meeting new races next to the very human soap opera that is the Skywalker dynasty. However, the pacing of this miniseries still feels extremely slow. If you’re a fan of Star Wars, though, you’ll very likely enjoy this (and if you aren’t, I don’t want to know you).