This review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens Graphic Novel Adaptation contains minor spoilers.
Nearly two years since it’s cinematic release, Star Wars: The Force Awakens remains a riveting, albeit familiar, tale that has propelled the Skywalker family saga ever forward.
The film is a lightning rod but regardless of one’s opinion, it did kickstart Star Wars into a new dawn and ensured that the Saga remains just as vital and enthralling as it did with the release of A New Hope in 1977. Still, it’s a story that has run its course.
Which is why it was puzzling, at first, when IDW Publishing and Lucasfilm announced plans for another adaptation of the movie (the first being Marvel’s six-issue 2016 mini series that fell short), this time as a graphic novel done in the so-called Disney animation style.
I was hesitant. I was lukewarm to the notion. I needn’t have been either.
The 80-page story, which is akin to the previous outings from Disney that saw the prequel and original trilogies given the same treatment, is brisk read, chock with adventure and largely true to the film.
It’s not the same as the comics Marvel publishes, but that’s OK, because Marvel does what it does and IDW/Disney have differentiated what they do, too.
Adapted by Alessandro Ferrari from the script, the graphic novel doesn’t shy away from the film’s breakneck stride, nor does it gloss over the death of Han Solo.
It’s solidly paced and you feel the emotion where you need to, be it the assault on Starkiller Base, the meeting of Gen. Leia Organa and Han or the fearful confrontation by Finn, and then Rey, with Kylo Ren.
Visually, it can be jarring at first, but if you’ve read the previous prequel and original trilogy adaptations, you’ll get used to it quickly, given the creative teams are almost one in the same. There’s solid work in this graphic novel.
That’s a testament to the skill of Igor Chimisso’s character studies, clean up and inks; Simone Buonfantino’s layouts; background and setting paints by Massimo Rocca and Davide Turotti; and character paints by Kawaii Creative Studio.
Their work, under the guidance of IDW editors Justin Eisinger and Alonzo Simon, makes The Force Awakens graphic novel a fun and engaging read. Is it mandatory? No. Is it recommended? Yes. Yes it is.
It also serves as a reminder that the upcoming Rogue One Graphic Novel Adaptation from IDW, due Dec. 12, and by the same creative team, should also be about the same in reach and scope.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Graphic Novel Adaptation is comic shops and book stores now, selling for $9.99, and on Amazon.Powered by Sidelines