Review Shooter: Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith: Spiral 5

Written by: John Jackson Miller
Art by: Andrea Mutti, Pierluigi Baldassini, and Michael Heisler
Review by: Tim Taylor

This week we finish up the Lost Tribe of the Sith — Spiral limited series with part five. The team has remained the same, Miller on script, Mutti on pencils, Baldassini sticking with inks, and the prolific mister Atiyeh on colors. For those unaware, Miller has written a number of eBooks regarding the Lost Tribe, but this is a new venture, taking that part of the universe into comics. The story here basically continues that from the eBooks, but is specifically geared to be a jumping-on point for new readers. In that respect, it does fairly well. There’s a lot of history missed from the previous nine novels, but the story does a decent enough job catching up new readers, at least with just the functional basics required to understand the environment.

In terms of the art, you’ll see much of what you saw in the previous four issues. In case you didn’t catch those, I think “busy” would be the quickest way to describe it. The inks are heavy and include lots of details, lots of line-shading, lots of little knicks and buttons and stains all over the page. It’s not bad, by any means, but it’s definitely a style that doesn’t really speak to me, personally. The colors are done well, although they can sometimes add an additional sense of clutter to the art. All the frames are very standard, nothing at all to really stand out there. All in all, it’s a decent showing, nothing is done particularly poorly, but nothing is really impressive either.

In terms of the story, there are good and bad points, but I’ll try to focus more as a whole here, and not spoil anything for those of you that were waiting for the whole series to finish before deciding to purchase or not. Basically there is a lost tribe of Sith. Shocking, I know. Anyway, they’ve developed a sort of meritocracy and there are some interesting undertones between what is “good” and what is “Sith” and how the society should be structured. It seems like the current leader is a wise man, looking more towards uniting the Sith as a whole and to perpetuate the system they have built. At the same time, you’re talking about a system where they have falsely claimed they are gods and they rule as such over the local population. I really like this idea and the play between what’s good and evil, acceptable and what is progressive. There is also a grouping of neutral Jedi, in self-imposed penance for prior crimes. They meditate and watch over the local population, they have Force powers, but hate to use them. Pretty intriguing stuff, if you ask me.

Then the story basically just takes all the focus away from those interesting dynamics and falls down repeated steps of cliché after cliché. Instead of really digging into this idea of good and evil, someone super evil shows up. Eeeeeevil. Like it’s the fruuuiit of the deeeeviiiil. Eeeevil. And so mister Evil wants to basically just destroy everything and giggle, then leave the planet to spread more awful Sithiness. There is also a roguish anti-hero. I think you see where I’m going with this.

The story is pretty flat and leaves behind the most interesting parts. That said, it’s not a bad story in the same way it’s not bad art. The story is a very accessible and uncomplicated grouping of coincidences and characters with extreme dispositions. I’m not upset I read it, but I’m also not really reveling in the nuance of the story. This is a story very much on the nicer side of the Star Wars spectrum, perhaps aimed at a younger audience. You won’t find yourself struggling as you just must like the protagonist, despite the fact he’s a drug addict who is only out for himself, like in Legacy. But there’s a bad guy and some people with light sabers and things explode and there are a bunch of exclamations so clunky you couldn’t possibly be confused who is good and who is bad. At worst, it’s a bit bland and heavy-handed. At best, well, it’s entertaining.

Recommendation: Borrow Can you rent comics? Is there like a… pay 50c and read it online once and that’s all you get? Because there should be. And that’s where this comic belongs.

 

Earl Rufus

The owner of this little chunk of the internet. Enjoys having a good time and being rather snarky!

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