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CE Crimson Empire II: Council of Blood #1 (of 6)
Story: Mike Richardson, Randy Stradley
Pencils: Paul Gulacy
Inks: Randy Emberlin
Colors: Dave Stewart
Cover: Dave Dorman
Editor: Diana Schutz


The Imperial Council is concerned as their leader is killed. Mirith Sinn approaches Grappa the Hutt for a favor.

EnsViews Comic Review
Reviewed 12/30/98

Fulfilling the marketing adage that a popular series shouldn't die, this title continues the adventures of Kir Kanos, Mirith Sinn, the Imperial Council with some new faces thrown in the mix.

In short, I don't find this opening chapter of the sequel to show any promise of surpassing its awful predecessor. Not only is the weather-beaten 'guy in a costume who wants to take over the Empire' plot back, but a laughable number of Star Wars cliches are in for a ride as well.

The worst retread violation is the addition of 'Grappa the Hutt', who's just exactly like Jabba but with a scary tattoo on his forehead. He has Gamorrean guards, a little half-monkey-half-lizard sidekick and he has a dungeon where he puts people who displease him so his henchmen can watch and cheer as they die a cruel death. Pretty original, huh? Also, do you think that if the SW writers were to create stories based on the Godfather trilogy that the new crime bosses would be named Borleone, Corleob and Zorleove?

I'm going to hold out naive hope that the next five (eleven??) issues will deliver something beyond the paper thin characters and plot I've seen so far.

After seven issues of Gulacy, I've come to the conclusion that I won't ever enjoy his style. That is not to say that it is a bad style or a style of lower quality, my taste simply does not care for the giant eyes and rigid camera angles.

Beyond style, however, I do feel justified in being critical of the poor renderings of the ships. The established ship designs are quite distorted in proportions. The original ship designs are drawn better, but don't seem quite as in place in the SW universe.

To Gulacy's credit, he does draw aliens much better than he does the human characters and in this title he's able to exploit this more than in the original series. Also to be fair, the color work of Stewart is quite good (and wasted) here.

Hobbled together plot, weak characters and (with minor exceptions) unappealing art. Buy this issue only if you find the Dorman cover along to be worth the cover price.

3/10. Not recommended.

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"EnsViews" are copyright ? 1997-8 by Paul Ens. They are posted to rec.arts.sf.starwars.misc, emailed to Dark Horse Comics and archived on theForce.net. With the exception of Dark Horse Comics Inc, they may not be reprinted without permission.

Titles, Cover images, Dark Horse Comics, and the Dark Horse logo are trademarks of Dark Horse Comics Inc. and its respective Licensors.

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