Star Wars: The Clone WarsShipyards of Doom By Henry Gilroy

Introducing a new, quarterly, graphic-novella series based on the exciting new Clone Wars motion picture and animated television series!

Jedi Knights Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and feisty Padawan newcomer Ahsoka Tano embark on a mission to uphold the Republic. In these early days of the Clone Wars, the Separatists are quickly gaining the upper hand with their incredible speed of manufacturing warships - the Republic has been forced to pull back their armies across the galaxy. The Jedi must infiltrate the Banking Clan Shipyards undetected if they hope to hamper ship production, and Anakin has the perfect plan...but getting in is just the beginning! Star Wars: The Clone WarsShipyards of Doom

A copy of this came with my Blu-ray copy of The Clone Wars movie ten years ago, but I never finished this volume at the time. It was a weird period when I was falling behind on Dark Horse's then-current Star Wars comics (which I have been catching up on since then) and then tuning into The Clone Wars TV show week to week. This tale alludes to events of that movie and seems to take place right before the Malevolence trilogy. What's weird is that the carbonite freezing strategy would be adapted for season 3's The Citadel, thus making it so that this comic would not really fit with the continuity of the show. The story itself kinda jumps around a bit much. There are some good moments of dialogue like when Anakin admits that he does need Ahsoka but wants to protect her, or when Obi-Wan ponders whether building a warship again but for the good guys is really a form of freedom. And there's a funny moment with a clone trooper named Toomer (an unfortunate name, though) having been frozen during the whole mission, thus missing out. He never appears in any later story, though, which is odd. I'm not really a fan of the artwork in this one. Feels too simplistic. Comics This is the first in a line of graphic novellas that take place during The Clone Wars (coinciding with TV series of the same name). SHIPYARDS OF DOOM follows Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Anakin's new Padawan Ahsoka. They are tasked with taking a group of Arc clone troopers and destroying a shipyard that is supplying destroyers for the Separatists. Once they get there they discover that slaves are being used to build the ships instead of droids.

It's a decent enough little comic that definitely captures the tone and spirit of the TV series it's based on. The artwork isn't the greatest and sometimes they used a lot of dialogue where a decent action scene or some exposition would have sufficed, but all in all not too bad. Comics This is the closest either of these comic series has come to feeling like episodes of the show. That's not a particularly great thing in my mind, though the comic improves on it simply through lack of the obnoxious voice acting and stiff animation. It does the same boring thing with Ahsoka that the Clone Wars arcs always do, giving her this pat, anodyne lesson to teach Anakin instead of any real drama or history for her as a person. This one is maybe better than most, though? Feels like slapdash, if just as contrived.

More important, though, is the slavery thing. After slavery (and Anakin, Ahsoka, and Obi-Wan's respective relationships to it) was covered so relatively deeply in Gilroy's arc Slaves of the Republic, this one feels quite underwhelming even though it's sort of standard fare.

The overall setup here feels slightly more imaginative than most, the droid-only zone with the radiation filters, the carbon freezing entry tactic, the reveal of the slaves inside. It's all fairly engaging. I even thought the villain was decent, more competent and not as goofy as a lot of TCW Separatist leaders. It's just a long way from actually good. Comics This was a quick little read. I haven't watched the cartoon that this book is based off of, but it was still a nice little story that could fit into the overall story line of Star Wars. The illustrations get a little funny, and my only complaint is that I want more time spent on them. A little detail can go along way. 

I would say this is a good fit for kids just getting into the franchise. Easy to read and not to complicated to follow.  Comics In this tale Ahsoka her master, and his master must shut down the Banking Clans shipyards. Its funny because there is a span of Clone Wars episodes very simller to this. And this is not even the first time they have reused a plot like this. Ahsoka must learn a lesson along the way. Filled with rich comedy, and exsiding action. Its fun for all (unless you've never seen the show). Comics

Full RTC Comics Dismal & disappointing are two adjectives that come to mind when I think of this CLONE WARS tale, SHIPYARDS OF DOOM. The story is more than a bit haphazard -- what starts out as a genuine mission then jumps from event to event with very little genuine flow -- as the Jedis don't always come off acting like the Jedis we all know and love. Granted, DOOM is intended for young readers so maybe I'm being a tad harsh on it, but as a child at heart I do expect a bit more meat & potatoes from my graphic Star Wars tales. The biggest plus is that does mesh fairly well artistically in the current CLONE WARS animated universe, so much so that it could easily serve as an 'adaptation' to one of the lesser episodes of the television show. All of the characters -- with the notable exception the Jango Fett clones (they all have essentially the same appearance whereas the clones on the TV show are given some individuality when it comes to hair color and styling and expressions), for some reason (perhaps this book was designed early, before the TV show had genuinely plotted out ways to make clones appear separate in unique ways) -- do strongly resemble their CGI counterparts, though Captain Rex's uniform is curiously missing most of his colorful detailing, a clear miss on the part of the book's artists. However, the writers do make solid use of some previous history within the Star Wars mythology, such as carbonite freezing, so the adventure isn't a total loss. Still, there have been vastly more interesting tales told in the universe spawned by George Lucas; the SHIPYARDS OF DOOM just isn't one of them. Comics So, I've been going back and looking at a lot of the early Clone Wars stuff in an attempt to work out the proper sequence of certain events. As such, here's the first in Dark Horse's line of digest-size Clone Wars comics!

It's the early days of the Clone Wars, and the Separatist Navy is producing ships at a rate that far outpaces the production abilities of the Republic. If the Republic can't slow Separatist production, the war is going to end quickly...and not in their favor. In an attempt to even the playing field, Obi-Wan, Anakin and his new padawan Ahsoka Tano take a strike team of clone troopers to the Banking Clan's automated shipyards as a scouting force for the incoming Republic bombing raid. Unfortunately, the automated shipyards are less automated than advertised, forcing the Jedi to find a way to evacuate the slave workforce before the bombers arrive.

On the whole, this was a fun little side adventure. The writing is solid, as you would expect from one of the writers for the television show this ties into. The art is more stylized, lower on detail than I would usually prefer, but it works well enough. The ties to the show are solid, and this easily slides into the niche between the Clone Wars film and the next onscreen appearance by these characters as Anakin deals with the fact that he almost got his padawan killed on her first mission, overprotecting her and making her feel like he doesn't trust her in battle. Ahsoka is a bit whiny, fitting in with her character at this point in the show, but somehow that was less annoying this time through. Maybe I've softened towards her due to her later awesomeness? Who knows. Anyway, if you liked the show, you'll enjoy this. If you're not familiar with the show, it won't do as much for you.

CONTENT: Mild to no profanity. Mild violence, usually against battle droids or occurring between panels. No sexual content. Comics This was an OK story. It's a comic tie-in to the movie and tv series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, done in the style of the recently-ended Clone Wars Adventures, but telling a book-length story rather than 3 or 4 smaller ones. There's an interesting subplot about slaves having to be convinced to try to escape rather than just accepting their fate. Comics Decent story, terrible artwork. This one was featured as a storyline in the TV show. Comics

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