Star-Lord’s adventures on Earth with Edmund Allen (formerly the Silver Bandit) continue as the two men pull off a heist. Does this issue have the same charm that has defined the series thus far?
Star-Lord #5 (Marvel Comics)
Star-Lord #4 ended with Black Cat coercing Peter and Edmund into committing a robbery for her, threatening to kill Edmund’s kidnapped son if they did not comply. This issue picks up with Peter questioning Edmund about his retirement from crime. Edmund cites the damage that his past thieving actions inflicted upon his relationships with his family as being sufficient reason for him to have quit and kept his high-tech equipment a secret. Writer Chip Zdarsky continues to flesh out Edmund’s character, making him a likable and welcome addition to Star-Lord’s personal mythos. Given how frequently new characters get introduced in comics without having their motivations or personalities get deeply explored or made interesting, Zdarsky’s character work with Edmund is refreshing.
When it comes to the issue’s other characters, however, things are more of a mixed bag. No character is ever written badly, a lot of them just feel underutilized. This issue includes just about every character who has played a part in the series thus far, and as a result the final product feels a bit jumbled. We get hints of great potential from various characters, but few of them get to shine brightly. The main exception besides Edmund is probably Logan, who takes part in a bar fight after delightfully reprising his old Patch disguise. We also get to see the Shocker and a few other bar patrons fighting back against the Black Cat and it’s an enjoyable moment. With that said, it could have been more enjoyable with more page time. Zdarsky did a great job introducing the supervillain bar setting and its patrons’ relationships to it in previous issues, so it’s a little disappointing that more isn’t being done with those concepts. The worst case of a character appearing but not living up to their full potential is Black Cat. She’s the series’ main antagonist, but has yet to receive any interesting character moments.
Overall, this is an enjoyable issue. Its problem isn’t that it executes anything poorly so much as it just feels a bit overstuffed with its various characters and plot points. Almost every individual character included throughout the series has had a few cool moments, but those moments have generated expectations that aren’t always fulfilled. It’s a shame that the Guardians of the Galaxy aren’t going to be stuck on Earth for much longer, as Star-Lord will presumably be leaving this new setting, and its charming cast, behind to venture back out into space. There’s a lot of good in this series and this issue, it just feels like the creators bit off a bit more than they could chew in such a small time frame.