Comic Review: Return to Vader’s Castle #5

Published: October 30, 2019
Writer: Cavan Scott
Penciler: Francesco Francavilla (Pages 1-2 & 19-20), Charles Paul Wilson III (Pages 3-18)
Colourist: Francesco Francavilla (Pages 1-2 & 19-20), David Garcia Cruz (Pages 3-18)
Letterer: AndWorld Design
Cover Artist: Francesco Francavilla

The synopsis;

This exciting weekly series explores the hidden corners of the Star Wars Galaxy and features a wretched hive of scum and villainy including Darth Maul, Grand Moff Tarkin, Asajj Ventress, Jabba the Hutt-all under the shadow of Darth Vader!

Fans will be excited to discover these creepy stories by fan-favourite writer Cavan Scott, with art by the greatest talent from across the galaxy, including Nicoletta Baldari, Nick Brokenshire, Francesco Francavilla, Kelley Jones, Megan Levens, and Charles Paul Wilson III! Covers by Eisner-winning artist Francesco Francavilla! Collect them all!

The review;

I cannot believe we are already here looking at the last issue of the Return to Vader’s Castle series by Cavan Scott. Time has flown, as they say, especially when you’re having fun!

We’ll start with this week’s ‘A’ cover and it’s a very apt illustration from Francesco Francavilla and it lives up to the issue title. I just love the choice of colour and detail that each passing glance seems to reveal. The inking details really come to the fore on the ‘RI’ cover too. The ‘B’ cover by this week’s story artist, Charles Paul Wilson III, shows a rather dishevelled Vader looming large over his Castle. This cover really makes sense once you have got in between the pages of the story and is in good context.

The appearance of an Inquisitor to take Captain Hudd away was a great surprise. I am not going to spoil anything here, yes, I know who it is, but Cavan’s secret is safe with me! The ending is a brilliant twist, but it’s the story in between that really gripped me this time out.

The main story also lends itself to some of the incidents in the Charles Soule Darth Vader (2017) series from Marvel Comics. In saying this, please do not think I believe this to be a parody or copy. The characters have great parallels within both series and the similarities here show that Scott and the team have paid attention to details.

Wilson III worked on the last series and I impressed by his work then, but this time, there is something very special about it. He has a unique way and the way he has stylized Vaneé especially is stunning. Mix this with the genius applications of colours by David Garcia Cruz and it just seems to jump off the page.

Scott seems to go from strength to strength and I have recently christened him the “Master of Star Wars Horror”. He just seems to know how to captivate a reader and has an ability to bring a tinge of horror to the Star Wars galaxy so well. The genre of Star Wars horror is not new, just ask Joe Schreiber, but I for one really would like to see a revisit to a Death Troopers or Red Harvest type novel. I am sure this would be an amazing hit with many fans.

There are a couple of people who very rarely get a mention in despatches in reviews, but I want to extend my congratulations to Denton Tipton and Elizabeth Brei. While it isn’t their words or art that make each issue, they continue to bring together brilliant talent to collaborate on these comics with such regularity.

A huge well done from the Literature Team at Jedi News goes to all the contributors. After 2 phenomenal series, I have everything crossed we get a chance for a third visit to Vader’s Castle next October.

Cavan please remember, don’t hesitate to give me a call, I have some ideas for more stories!


Star Wars Adventures: Return to Vader’s Castle #5 was released on October 30, 2019 and is published by IDW Publishing. This issue is available via Forbidden Planet in the UK and from all good comic bookstores and retails at $3.99.