After Marvel’s disappointing adaptation of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, there’s nowhere to go but up for the publisher’s adaptation of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Considering that Rogue One was a better movie, it should make for a better comic book. Writer Jody Houser and artist Emilio Laiso have to include something different; otherwise, what’s the point of an adaptation for a movie we can already buy on home video?
Writer: Jody Houser
Artist: Emilio Laiso
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Here’s the official synopsis… not that you need it since we’ve all seen Rogue One.
Jyn Erso continues her quest with Cassian Andor to help the Rebellion fight the sinister Galactic Empire. Following the trail to the ancient Jedha City to find Rebel extremist Saw Guerra, Jyn and Cassian get caught in a firefight with the Empire …only to then be taken prisoner by Saw’s followers!
The first issue covered up to the point where Jyn, Cassian and K-2SO leave Yavin IV to reach Jedha City. The issue was filled with unique scenes that weren’t in Gareth Edwards’ final film, like Galen Erso handing his message to Bodhi Rook and images of Jyn’s past with Saw Gerrera.
Since part two is fewer pages, there are of course fewer surprises. It’s cool to see more of young Jyn’s life with Saw, planting images in our minds that will come up when we re-watch the film. But overall, the issue covers a very short sequence in the film and rushes through Jyn’s meeting with Saw. It also compresses Director Krennic’s scene with Tarkin, just before the Death Star blows up the city. Just as the Death Star’s super-laser revs up and the city starts to shake, the issue ends.
Scenes from Bodhi’s past weren’t in the movie, but you can see them here.
Laiso’s art is not great, especially compared to the dynamic art in Star Wars Annual #2. Here, Laiso struggles to get the faces of the actors right–he has some serious trouble with Diego Luna. The action sequences are much better, but he’s really trying his best to make some scenes with dialogue a little more exciting. You can feel that there’s an artist struggling to bring his own style to something that others have already created.
It’s really difficult to recommend picking each issue of the adaptation up individually because we all know how it ends and the extra scenes aren’t as impressive in issue two as they were in issue one. Star Wars fans will enjoy seeing some flashes of pasts we only hear about in the film, but those with more patience should wait for the trade paperback.