A new hope came to the galaxy. The empire struck back and the Jedi returned but what happened next is a bit more divisive. Did the Emperor return from beyond the grave as a clone or did the Emperor come back to life as a clone. Was a bigger and far more destructive super weapon constructed that dwarfed the Death Star or did someone build a more destructive and far bigger super weapon that dwarfed even the Death Star. Did Han and Leia’s son fall to the dark side or did Leila and Han’s son fall to the dark side. Whether you are Legends or Disney is a big sticking point on the internet even today. Don’t worry I won’t be trying to make things worse by pitting one against the other because I want to go to a point in time that Disney has not yet reached. Over a hundred years after a farm boy from Tatooine fired his torpedo down a vent and changed the course of Galactic history. It’s a whole new Sith order, whole new Empire, and a whole new Skywalker in ….
Now this is set in the expanded universe and quite a bit of this story is based upon that fact. The first issue opens with a text crawl, as all good Star Wars does, and I’m not sure how much you have to pay attention to it. This matter is only helped or hindered by Darth exposition who takes us through the majority of the first issue giving us enough backstory to make this possibly seem far more complicated than it really is. The story of what happened will unfold over the next ten or so issues with who betrayed who and why making issue one almost the worst point to jump on at. The dialogue over the first few issues isn’t great even when they’re not dumping backstory on us so this reeling off of events a hundred years ago when we don’t yet know who anyone is today makes this a bit of a slog of an issue. For those who want to start at episode one I would almost advise taking this as a silent movie and in that respect. much like A New Hope itself it works really well. The empire is invading a Jedi temple backed up by a couple of Sith warrior. Even if you have never seen Star Wars you can pick out the bad guys and good guys here, partially due to pop culture osmosis but also because the bad guys all have red light sabres and scary faces and or wear face concealing body armour.
While the last Skywalker holds them off his son and other younglings get the innocents to safety on board their ship. But it’s not quite so easy to get away and Cade has to jump into his fighter to buy yet more time for the jump to hyper space. This leaves him for dead, adrift in space. Meanwhile thousands of parsecs away the Emperor is usurped by the most generically evil looking Sith in the Galaxy Darth Kryat. He’s got rid of the elegant, almost samurai esque looking body armour of Darth Vader for something that feels more medieval and over the top. He also suffers form the poor naming that the series will suffer from. Star Wars was set in a galaxy far far away and some of the names were a bit out there but they worked. Luke and Leia were fairly normal and Han, while a new name to us, worked as a name. Even the more alien and out there names seemed to work like Obi-Wan and Chewbacca. Now whether it’s because these aren’t going to be said out loud but only written down; a lot of the names in this book seem so out there that they struggle to stick in your head. The Sith in particular suffer from this but they won’t be the only ones.
Anyway Darth Kryat takes over the Empire leaving the previous Emperor, Fel, to go on the run and this is where the story starts. Skywalker dead and the Sith in control. Now the backstory to all of this will be explained a bit better as we go on as they put names and faces to the back stabbing helping you take it in easier even if you’ve never heard of a Vong before. The short explanation, as the first issues tries to get across for those who never got past the Return of the Jedi, is that an alien force invaded the galaxy and what remained of the Empire, after the Emperor was chucked into a bottomless pit, and New Republic had to join forces to counter it. Once they had won the Jedi tried to allow the Vong to live in peace claiming unused worlds and stuff for their own. However a lot of damage had been done during their war and the Empire managed to use this to twist the galaxy against the Jedi and the Galactic Republic leaving them in charge when our story begins or before our story begins I guess.
However to take this in along with the fall of the Jedi, the death of a Skywalker, the scheming of two imperial generals, the sickness that taxes lord Kryat, and Cade bringing people back from the dead, all seem a bit much to take in. At least as it’s presented here. I get that we want to appeal to those who haven’t read the books or much beyond the movies and I do think this series, with its huge time jump, is quite good for that but at the same time A New Hope didn’t sit and tell us about the Emperor’s rise to power while Artoo and C3PO were trying to reach the escape pod. Maybe they were just keen to point out this wasn’t a new order situation where there is a new super power wearing the clothes of an old one with no explanation as to the how or why but going off issue one alone I’d say they fall too far the other way. Though having said that they manage to suffer from the same issue at the time of having yet more Stormtroopers, Sith and TIE fighters. This is an issue I might get into more somewhere else, as I’m only supposed to be tackling issue one of Legacy here, but the biggest problem Star Wars has kind of always had whether Legends or Cannon is that no matter where you go in space or time you will find an evil empire, some Sith, and a storm trooper. This is made all the worse with the prophecy of someone, whether Luke or Ani, supposedly bringing balance to the force. Surfice to say that while the bygone era could have their Sith running around because we hadn’t yet bought balance to the force jumping 100 years after to find the same thing seem a little boring.
The art work is okay, it never gets poor or unreadable but the faces can sometimes feel off or twisted, especially during the actions scenes and the colours seem to fade with some popping with colour while others seem to be faded and dull while sitting back to back with each other making it look like poor printing rather than some artistic choice.