The Star Wars original trilogy of films has taken many forms over the years: Special Editions, special Special Editions incorporating the prequels, LEGO, manga, comic book series, and more. You might be wondering why you need yet another version in the recently released form of the Star Wars Original Trilogy Graphic Novel. Sure, maybe you don’t, but the kids do.
This textbook-sized hardcover book collects all three of the original movies into one easy-to-read graphic novel that can serve as the perfect introduction to the Star Wars universe for kids who want to explore the story at their own pace. You might have a hard time getting them to sit for the 2 hours of A New Hope, but a little reading here and there of the graphic novel allows them to linger over every panel as fast or slow as they want.
For Star Wars purists, be warned that the story has been edited and very slightly condensed, but nothing that most casual viewers of the films would notice. (If you practically have the dialogue memorized, you’ll notice.) You might be aghast to see the words “it’s a space station” missing when our heroes first spot the Death Star, but for readers new to galaxy or casual fans, it’s no big deal. Also missing is the kiss between Luke and Leia, which made me indignant at first until I realized it might save me the time having to explain that later.
Some of the more grisly deaths seem to be purposely left out, so Uncle Owen, Aunt Beru, and even Oola are spared, but Jabba and Admiral Ozzel still have their the worst day ever.
Guess what wasn’t omitted? Greedo shooting at Han in the Mos Eisley cantina. Ah, well.
The art is kid-friendly and slightly cartoonish, with Darth Vader’s long mask a little reminiscent of Ralph McQuarrie’s original concept art. The sound effects are spot-on, with plenty of “pew pew” from the blasters and “zmmmm” for the hum of a lightsaber.
Overall, this is an excellent re-telling of the original trilogy for kids. Having the entire story in once place for kids to read at their own pace is unquestionably handy and much appreciated. If you’ve had a hard time getting the kids to settle in to a galaxy far, far away for the length of a movie, give Star Wars: The Original Trilogy Graphic Novel a shot.
A promotional copy was provided for review purposes.