So, I found this interesting list over on Joe Bongiorno’s fantastic website. It attempts to give a chronological list of the 111 (actually 115, since there are a few ties on the list) Star Wars stories you must read.
And I thought it would be interesting to go through the list with you guys and see what you thought of his picks. Much as I love Joe’s website, I feel the list misses quite a few actually indispensable works and includes several that are pretty terrible and not at all necessary and it hasn’t been updated in a few years apparently. So, definitely, we won’t be agreeing with this list, but I thought it would make a fun corollary to my regular chronology project. If I haven’t come to a work in my regular chronological journey I’ll do a regular style bullet point review, as well as a brief nugget write up. If, as on this first one, I’ve already done a regular bullet point review of the story in my regular journey, I’ll just do the short paragraph.
But enough talk! Let’s get to the first entry on the list.
1. Tales of the Jedi: The Golden Age of the Sith (1997) – Kevin J. Anderson
Well, it has some amazing art. The non-human characters, except for the Sith, are amazingly creative and well rendered and the world the comic creates is visually arresting. Moments like the long shot down the Valley of the Dark Lords are images that you could spend an hour perusing and still not catch every detail. Also to the good are some of the side characters. Ssk Kahor, a Trandoshan thug, is a finely realized minor villain; Odan-Urr is a bookish, decidedly nontypical Jedi and Aarba is a groundbreakingly interesting & sympathetic Hutt.
But I wouldn’t recommend you read the dialogue (“I am vindicated! The great Dark Lord has come to crush you for your sacrilege!”) or the narration (“Without blind hope, a hyperspace explorer has nothing.”). Under no circumstances attempt to follow the plot; Gav & Jori Daragon are a pair of hyperspace explorers who would be distinctly unlikable if they weren’t so uninteresting. They’re captured by Naga Sadow, a Sith Lord who adheres to the school of Method Acting, and schemes to overthrow the Republic in the most complicated way possible.
MOMENT YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Obviously, the scene in which a severed head is murdered by being shot (in the head, of course). Seriously, if the loss of his heart, his blood, his stomach, and his lungs didn’t kill him, I doubt a frigging blaster will do more than put him in a bad mood.
OK, next time, we’ll get back to the regular chronology by getting into the next story in the Lost Tribe of the Sith series, Skyborn!