Poe Dameron is a character we’ve been dying to spend more time with. After The Force Awakens, we wanted more about the pilot, his role in the Resistance is, and—most importantly—where he got that jacket. While it’s unclear how much of this will be addressed in his new comic series, there is still plenty of the jet-setter’s charm and charisma in the first issue of Poe Dameron. Also, lots of BB-8. Come for Poe Dameron, stay for BB-8.
If there’s one thing that writer Charles Soule and artist Phil Noto get, it’s the voice of Poe Dameron. You practically hear Oscar Isaac’s voice saying the dialogue that fills this issue. Noto perfectly captures the actor’s likeness, too, which can be a tricky tightrope walk, but it works here. When it comes to delivering on that sweet, sweet Poe Dameron goodness, Soule and Noto are killing it.
This first issue also works wonderfully as a prequel to The Force Awakens, showing us the mission that Poe and his Black Squadron carried out prior to the events of the film. Who was that mysterious old man Poe was talking with in the film’s opening? Looks like we’ll get some answers here, which is pretty damn exciting. For a Star Wars fan who loves to obsess over every little corner of the its vast universe, there’s lots to pour over here.
The only place the issue trips up is in some of the action. Noto’s attention to detail in the characters’ likenesses seems to pay off when they are looking straight ahead or conversing with each other, but things fall apart when they start fighting, yelling, or diving out of harm’s way. It can look a little stiff, which is a bummer because Noto is usually a top notch action storyteller. Being a slave to likenesses is no joke, and Noto does the best he can while capturing the look of the actors who play these parts. Still, you can’t help but wonder how much better the flow of this book could have been if he had not worried about nailing the characters’ real life counterparts on the page.
Fortunately, the good far outweighs the bad here. Sure, it may be that less of a focus on character likenesses would have helped. Maybe having a colorist other than Noto (he’s pulling double duty here) would have brought a bit more life to some of the panels. But when it’s all said and done, Poe Dameron #1 is a super fun comic with a killer Charles Soule script and slick Phil Noto art. Also, it has an amazing cover. As good as Noto is with interiors, the dude is even better with covers. His design skills are flawless.
So, while we may never learn the secret of that jacket (we know it’s non-regulation tailoring), we can at least learn a little more about one of our favorite character’s roles in the vast Star Wars tapestry. As a fan of the Extend Universe, it’s awesome to see it being built up again.
Image: Lucasfilm/Marvel Comics, Disney