Darth Maul: Death Sentence #4
Written By: Tom Taylor
Art By: Bruno Redondo
Colors By: Michael Atiyeh
Lettering By: Michael Heisler
Cover Art By: Dave Dorman
*Spoilers to follow*
After I read the last page of issue #3 of “Darth Maul: Death Sentence,” I absolutely couldn’t wait to read issue #4! The third part of this four-part series ended on a great cliff hanger, where we saw Darth Maul use Obi Wan’s squad of Clone Troopers to attack his army of the Moorjhoni, just for a distraction so he could rescue Savage Opress, and I just couldn’t wait to see how things would wrap up in the final comic of this cool Darth Maul story. Thankfully, issue #4 is a solid ending to this 4 Part series, and while I did wish we could’ve seen more of the battle between the Clones and the Moorjhoni, as well as a longer Lightsaber duel between Maul and the Jedi, there were still some really great moments in this issue, which definitely made it a satisfying conclusion to this story.
Right away we see Maul using his distraction to his advantage, as we see him make his way inisde Ja’boag base to find his brother. But before he makes it very far, he is confronted by Jedi master Judd, and the two engage in a short lightsaber duel. Judd is definitely the best new character introduced in this series, as he is a Jedi who is not afraid to speak his mind to taunt his opponents, but also has the self-sacrificing qualities that make a great Jedi Knight, which he greatly displays in this issue. I just wished we could’ve seen a longer lightsaber duel between these two characters, as they had some great banter with each other, and seeing Darth Maul fight any Jedi with his lightsaber is always awesome!
But due to the event known as “The Day of Three Suns,” which will burn up the entire planet’s surface in a matter of moments, Judd has to hurry and get to the battle outside so he can get the Moorjhoni, and Obi Wan’s troops inside the mines before the three suns rise. It is this sequence that probably had my favorite moments of the entire issue, where Judd shows his great self-sacrificing spirit as a Jedi, as he stays behind out on the surface to make sure everyone gets inside the mines before the catastrophic event occurs, which included him even using the force to shove Obi Wan and his troops inside the mine, which I thought made for a great and intense sequence. In doing this, the Moorjhoni came to realize that it wasn’t Maul who was the chosen deliverer of their people know as “The Demon in the Light,” but it was actually Judd who fulfilled this prophesy. I really liked the art in the panels that showed Judd as the savoir of the people, where we see him standing right underneath the sun with it’s light shining down on him, as well as in his final moments saving everyone. Artist Bruno Redondo, and colorist Michael Atiyeh, did a great job of showing him as a very confident and heroic Jedi. One that I was sad to see go, as I would have loved to see him show up again in future stories.
Inside the mine, Maul makes his way to where Ja’boag was holding Savage, and is greeted by Ja’boag and the two other Jedi who accompanied Judd to the planet. The young Padawan tries his hand at mocking Maul, but it doesn’t have the same effect as Judd’s words do, as Maul just blows them off and frees Savage from his captivity in Carbonite. I really liked how Maul frees Savage in this sequence. As Jedi master Salmara tries to prevent Maul from reaching Savage, Maul just calmly uses the force to free his brother from carbonite, which then results in a brutal end for Salmara. One that took me by surprise.
The death of his master causes Padawan Dray to attack Maul in a rage, and while he did land a few hits against Maul, Maul easily stops him, but doesn’t kill him, which I was surprised by. But before making his escape with Savage and Ja’boag, Dray says something that finally upsets Maul. He tells him, “Obi Wan Kenobi will find you,” which made Maul look like he wanted to go back and finish off the young Padawan, but knew he had to hurry and leave before Obi Wan and his troops arrived. I always like how the mere mention of Obi Wan’s name cause so much hatred to swell up inside Maul, as he can take all the taunts made about him losing his legs, but when he hears the name Obi Wan mentioned, you better watch out!
The story concludes with Maul and Savage making their escape with Ja’boag, and using him to gain a vast amount of credits before disposing of him for good. I was definitely glad to see a comic series about Darth Maul end with him accomplishing the goal he was set out to do from the start, as I would have been disappointed if the series ended with him and Savage in the same situation they were in at the beginning of the story. Sometimes it’s just good to see the bad guys win. Overall, I thought issue #4 was a good conclusion to this story. I just wished it could’ve ended on a more grand scale with showing us more of the battle between the Clones and the Moorjhoni, as well as one last epic lightsaber battle between the two Sith and the Jedi, which I thought would’ve helped end this series with a bang.
When looking at back at this story as a whole, this four-part comic series was great. Writer Tom Taylor gave us a great look inside the head of Darth Maul, as well as putting him and Savage into some situations that we’ve never seen them in before. This series also featured some great action sequences throughout the story, ones that compliment the already great action sequences we’ve seen Maul in on “The Clone Wars,” as well as in “The Phantom Menace.” I will be curious to see if the way the story ended plays into the upcoming Darth Maul/Death Watch arc on “The Clone Wars,” but if not, this series is still a great Darth Maul story on it’s own, and one that I would definitely recommend to all Star Wars fans.