New Star Wars and Darth Vader Comic Series, Covering the Period Between Episodes V and VI

author img
BY October 7, 2019

We reported some time ago, that the Star Wars comic series from Marvel ends with issue #75, and we speculated that a new one might be on the way. We speculated that Lucasfilm would set their new series in the sequel era, but that’s not the case. At New York Comic-Con, Lucasfilm and Marvel revealed that both the new Star Wars and Darth Vader comic series would focus on the time between Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. In the films, we see Luke Skywalker go from an untrained, defeated mess into a confident Jedi Knight capable of busting his friends out of Jabba’s palace. (And the plan totally made sense!) We’ll now get to see that journey play out in the pages of the comic series. So, what does that mean about what’s next for the characters and how long the series will run? We’ll share what we know and try to fill in the gaps with educated guesses.

New Star Wars and Darth Vader Comic Series Image via Marvel

The first Star Wars comic series lasted 75 issues because it had a lengthy amount of time to cover. Set shortly after the events of A New Hope, the series followed Luke, Leia, and Han Solo as they deepened their bonds and fought the Empire. The time that passes between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back is put at about three “standard” years. The time between Han going into carbonite and being freed from it spans, at most, a single year. So, the new Star Wars comic series won’t have as much time to play with, and they are down a character in Han Solo. (Though, they gain Lando Calrissian.) If these are to be limited series, the new Star Wars and Darth Vader comic series will have shorter runs than their predecessors. Or, they might not be limited series. That makes them all the more interesting.

The New Star Wars Comic Series Can Keep Going, but Darth Vader Obviously Can’t

New Star Wars and Darth Vader Comic Series Luke Hand Empire Strikes Back Father Image via Lucasfilm

Unlike the new Star Wars comic series, Darth Vader will almost certainly have a short run. There have been two eponymous series starring everyone’s favorite redeemed Sith Lord. This will mark the third. Yet, unlike the rest of the characters, Darth Vader’s story comes to a very final end. Even if the series goes past the events of Return of the Jedi, it can’t go much further. At best, they can pull of a surreal and spiritual story the likes of Alan Moore’s run on Saga of the Swamp Thing. Also, using Vader as a central character is tricky. He works best in small doses and with other characters. (That’s how Doctor Aphra was born.) The events of this new series could delve into some interesting territory regarding Vader and Emperor Palpatine. But there’s no question the story ends with the destruction of the second Death Star.

The main series, however, could go on past the events of the films. Star Wars: Shattered Empire focused on Poe Dameron’s parents and the days and weeks immediately after the Battle of Endor. The main series could carry on the story even further. We can see what becomes of Luke, Leia, Han, and everyone else through the eyes of the comics. Characters from Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath novels or Claudia Gray’s Lost Stars could also make appearances. Telling the stories about the legacy characters is perfect for the comic medium. And because it’s a story that most older Star Wars fans are deeply interested in, they’ll help boost the sales even after it passes the events of the films. The new series will hit shelves in January of 2020, with Darth Vader to follow.

Other Lucasfilm Publishing Announcements from NYCC

Along with the new Star Wars and Darth Vader comic series, Lucasfilm announced other prose fiction projects. An anthology series of stories set during the Clone War will debut in August of 2020. This will focus on characters popularized in The Clone Wars, itself getting a new season on Disney+ in the first year.

The novelization for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will hit shelves in the spring of 2020, written by Rae Carson. As part of the “Journey to Rise of Skywalker” series, Star Wars: Resistance Reborn from Rebecca Roanhorse deals with the aftermath of the events of The Last Jedi from Poe’s perspective. An excerpt of Resistance Reborn is live on the Star Wars website. The book hits shelves on November 5th, before the new film premieres.

Finally, Timothy Zahn announced a new trilogy about his character Admiral Thrawn. Last seen in the series finale of Star Wars: Rebels jumping into an unknown quadrant of space, there isn’t much story left to tell. However, this new series takes place before Thrawn joined the Empire. This means we will learn a lot more canon information about the Chiss Ascendency and Thrawn’s travels into the unknown regions. He told Emperor Palpatine that a galaxy-wide threat would come from that part of space. Perhaps we will finally learn what it is that had him so scared.

So, which of the new projects are you most excited about? Tell us in the comments below or shout us out on social media.

Image via screengrab


Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.

Leave a comment


Joker: How Brian Azzarello Contextualized One Of Comics’ Iconic Antagonists

Take a look at how the Joker graphic novel dug into one of the comic’s most deranged and bizarre minds, on its 10th Anniversary.

BY Shah Shahid July 10, 2019
Crisis on Infinite Earths: The Epic Crossover that Birthed All Epic Crossovers

We touched on Crisis on Infinite Earths a few times now, whether it was about the upcoming Arrowverse event, or a look at crossover events in general. But the 1985 mega-hit really needs to be explored properly, just for the sheer scope of the damn thing. Not only was there the 12 issue Maxi-series, but […]

BY Roman Colombo October 21, 2019
Marvel Edits Criticism of America In Essay by Captain America Writer Mark Waid

We were here just a couple of weeks ago. Marvel decided not to run an essay from living comic legend Art Spiegelman because it criticized President Trump (Note—you don’t get ART SPIEGELMAN to write an essay for you and then decide not to use it). Now it’s prolific comic writer, and one of their current […]

BY Roman Colombo August 28, 2019
Revenge of the Sith Retro Review – The Game

As a child of the mid 90s, I grew up heavily impacted by the Star Wars prequels. I remember attending a birthday party to see The Phantom Menace, having no knowledge there were others released decades ago. I became obsessed, and after seeing The Clone Wars, I was all aboard the hype train for Revenge […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 18, 2020
Best Rebuilds for NBA 2K20 – MyLeague Tips

I’m a huge fan of NBA 2K20, but most of my time is spent in one area of the game. While some work to become dribble gods on MyPark, I stick to MyLeague. Solely, for the the experience of managing a team. Working to rebuild teams on MyLeague is the reason I average over 200 […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 17, 2020
E3 Veteran Geoff Keighley Skipping Conference in 2020

I think one thing I love about video game journalism is getting to talk games. On the best day, covering gaming news involves great reveals, exciting titles, and hopes for my favorite series. On the worst day, I can usually say the downers about gaming journalism involve the industry. Sometimes, profits and sponsors get in […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 17, 2020
Marvel’s Avengers Pre-Order Deals: Where to Get The Best Bonus

Pre-ordering games used to be a way to make sure you had a highly anticipated title as soon as possible. Now, pre-orders are a sort of incentive for extra content and goodies. A fun bonus is usually enough to get me to pre-order a game, and an upcoming Marvel video game fits that bill for […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 14, 2020


Disney+ Reveals First Clip of Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars by Highlighting the Bad Batch

Star Wars fans may eagerly await the next story in the films or season 2 of The Mandalorian. However, the most anticipated new thing is something, well, old. After debuting the release date for Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Disney+ released the first preview clip highlighting the Bad Batch. The title of […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020
Ben Affleck Opens Up About Why He Stopped Being The Batman In New Interview

The Batman is dead, long live the Batman! This is how it is for fans of the caped crusader. Sure, Bruce Wayne may be ageless and eternal in the pages of DC Comics for 80 years, but mere mortals age. Michael Keaton is more like Bruce Wayne in the Batman Beyond series than the character […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020
Alas, Green Arrow and the Canaries Has Not Yet Been Picked Up By the CW, Producer Confirms

For fans of the Arrowverse, specifically those who are sad about the Arrow series finale, Twitter got exciting in the wee hours of the morning. A writer for another site, who did successfully predict Titans being renewed for season 3, dropped what seemed like a seedling of hope. He said that Green Arrow and the […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020
Set Video of Woody Harrelson as Cletus Kasady Shows Him Doing…Something Bad?

Venom fans got their first, long-awaited look at the man who would be Carnage in action today. A set video showing Woody Harrelson as Cletus Kasady hit the internet. Much of the focus on Venom 2 has been on the reports that Tom Holland’s Spider-Man might make an appearance. Since Sony and Disney reached a […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 18, 2020