- "Long ago in a galaxy far, far away... there exists a state of cosmic civil war. A brave alliance of underground freedom fighters has challenged the tyranny and oppression of the awesome Galactic Empire. This is their story!"
- ―Introduction to many issues of Marvel's Star Wars
The Marvel Star Wars series of comic books was the first ever comic series created for the saga. It spanned 107 issues, with three special Annual issues. The series was relatively long-running, lasting from 1977 to 1986. It was published by Marvel Comics. The series was such a smash hit for Marvel in an otherwise dismal sales year that many who worked at Marvel in 1977 consider it to have singlehandedly saved them from financial ruin.
Issues 1–6 adapted the events of A New Hope and Issues 39–44 adapted The Empire Strikes Back; however, the Return of the Jedi adaptation was published as a separate four-issue mini-series outside of the regular series.
Marvel Illustrated Books' Star Wars, Star Wars 2: World of Fire, and Classic Star Wars: Devilworlds 1 and 2 included additional stories published as part of the Marvel UK Star Wars series, which, due to running weekly, included additional stories. The only story that hadn't been reprinted in the US is Death Masque until its ultimate appearance inside the 2013 Star Wars Omnibus: Wild Space Volume 1.
Many issues of the regular series included a letter column titled Star-Words.
- 1 Continuity
- 2 Issues
- 3 Annual Issues
- 4 Return of the Jedi movie adaptation mini-series
- 5 Special Editions based on Marvel issues
- 6 Collections
- 7 Publication dates
- 8 Worldwide variations
- 9 Bibliography
- 10 Notes and references
- 11 External links
Continuity[edit | edit source]
- "We have what we call Canon, which is the screenplays, novelizations, and other core works that are directly tied into the continuity, and then there are a lot of marginal things, like the old Marvel Comics series, that we don't really try to work into the continuity when we're planning new projects."
- ―Allan Kausch
A reviewing process was in place between Marvel and Lucasfilm since the earliest issues, with Archie Goodwin sending drafts to Carol Titelman, and later to another editor from Lucasfilm licensing department.
As time passed, Marvel stories became less relevant, as noted by Allan Kausch in The Secrets of Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire in 1996. According to Leland Chee, all of the Marvel Comics are considered S-Canon unless referenced by a C-Canon source, in which case that particular comic becomes C-Canon.
Issues[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars 1
- Star Wars 2: Six Against the Galaxy
- Star Wars 3: Death Star!
- Star Wars 4: In Battle with Darth Vader
- Star Wars 5: Lo, The Moons of Yavin!
- Star Wars 6: Is This the Final Chapter?
- Star Wars 7: New Planets, New Perils!
- Star Wars 8: Eight for Aduba-3
- Star Wars 9: Showdown on a Wasteland World!
- Star Wars 10: Behemoth from the World Below
- Star Wars 11: Star Search!
- Star Wars 12: Doomworld!
- Star Wars 13: Day of the Dragon Lords!
- Star Wars 14: The Sound of Armageddon
- Star Wars 15: Star Duel
- Star Wars 16: The Hunter
- Star Wars 17: Crucible
- Star Wars 18: The Empire Strikes
- Star Wars 19: The Ultimate Gamble
- Star Wars 20: Deathgame
- Star Wars 21: Shadow of a Dark Lord
- Star Wars 22: To the Last Gladiator
- Star Wars 23: Flight Into Fury
- Star Wars 24: Silent Drifting
- Star Wars 25: Siege at Yavin
- Star Wars 26: Doom Mission
- Star Wars 27: Return of the Hunter
- Star Wars 28: What Ever Happened to Jabba the Hut?
- Star Wars 29: Dark Encounter
- Star Wars 30: A Princess Alone
- Star Wars 31: Return to Tatooine
- Star Wars 32: The Jawa Express
- Star Wars 33: Saber Clash
- Star Wars 34: Thunder in the Stars
- Star Wars 35: Dark Lord's Gambit
- Star Wars 36: Red Queen Rising
- Star Wars 37: In Mortal Combat
- Star Wars 38: Riders in the Void
- Star Wars 39: The Empire Strikes Back: Beginning
- Star Wars 40: The Empire Strikes Back: Battleground Hoth
- Star Wars 41: The Empire Strikes Back: Imperial Pursuit
- Star Wars 42: The Empire Strikes Back: To Be a Jedi
- Star Wars 43: The Empire Strikes Back: Betrayal at Bespin
- Star Wars 44: The Empire Strikes Back: Duel a Dark Lord
- Star Wars 45: Death Probe
- Star Wars 46: The Dreams of Cody Sunn-Childe
- Star Wars 47: Droid World
- Star Wars 48: The Third Law
- Star Wars 49: The Last Jedi
- Star Wars 50: The Crimson Forever
- Star Wars 51: Resurrection of Evil
- Star Wars 52: To Take The Tarkin
- Star Wars 53: The Last Gift From Alderaan!
- Star Wars 54: Starfire Rising
- Star Wars 55: Plif!
- Star Wars 56: Coffin in the Clouds
- Star Wars 57: Hello, Bespin, Good-bye!
- Star Wars 58: Sundown!
- Star Wars 59: Bazarre
- Star Wars 60: Shira's Story
- Star Wars 61: Screams in the Void
- Star Wars 62: Pariah!
- Star Wars 63: The Mind Spider
- Star Wars 64: Serphidian Eyes
- Star Wars 65: Golrath Never Forgets
- Star Wars 66: The Water Bandits
- Star Wars 67: The Darker
- Star Wars 68: The Search Begins
- Star Wars 69: Death in the City of Bone
- Star Wars 70: The Stenax Shuffle
- Star Wars 71: Return to Stenos
- Star Wars 72: Fool's Bounty
- Star Wars 73: Lahsbane
- Star Wars 74: The Iskalon Effect
- Star Wars 75: Tidal
- Star Wars 76: Artoo-Detoo to the Rescue
- Star Wars 77: Chanteuse of the Stars...
- Star Wars 78: Hoth Stuff!
- Star Wars 79: The Big Con
- Star Wars 80: Ellie
- Star Wars 81: Jawas of Doom
- Star Wars 82: Diplomacy
- Star Wars 83: Sweetheart Contract
- Star Wars 84: Seoul Searching
- Star Wars 85: The Hero
- Star Wars 86: The Alderaan Factor
- Star Wars 87: Still Active After All These Years
- Star Wars 88: Figurehead
- Star Wars 89: I'll See You in the Throne Room
- Star Wars 90: The Choice
- Star Wars 91: Wookiee World
- Star Wars 92: The Dream
- Star Wars 93: Catspaw
- Star Wars 94: Small Wars
- Star Wars 95: No Zeltrons
- Star Wars 96: Duel With a Dark Lady
- Star Wars 97: Escape
- Star Wars 98: Supply and Demand
- Star Wars 99: Touch of the Goddess
- Star Wars 100: First Strike
- Star Wars 101: Far, Far Away
- Star Wars 102: School Spirit
- Star Wars 103: Tai
- Star Wars 104: Nagais and Dolls
- Star Wars 105: The Party's Over
- Star Wars 106: My Hiromi
- Star Wars 107: All Together Now
- Star Wars 108: Forever Crimson
Annual Issues[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars Annual 1: The Long Hunt
- Star Wars Annual 2: Shadeshine!
- Star Wars Annual 3: The Apprentice
Return of the Jedi movie adaptation mini-series[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 1: In the Hands of Jabba the Hutt
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 2: The Emperor Commands
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 3: Mission to Endor
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 4: The Final Duel
Special Editions based on Marvel issues[edit | edit source]
The Empire Strikes Back[edit | edit source]
Return of the Jedi[edit | edit source]
Collections[edit | edit source]
A New Hope[edit | edit source]
- The Marvel Comics Illustrated Version of Star Wars
- Marvel Special Edition Featuring Star Wars 1
- Marvel Special Edition Featuring Star Wars 2
- Marvel Special Edition Featuring Star Wars 3
- Marvel Movie Showcase 1
- Marvel Movie Showcase 2
- Classic Star Wars: A New Hope (TPB)
The Empire Strikes Back[edit | edit source]
- The Marvel Comics Illustrated Version of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
- Marvel Super Special 16: The Empire Strikes Back
- Marvel Special Edition 2: The Empire Strikes Back
- Classic Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (TPB)
Return of the Jedi[edit | edit source]
- The Marvel Comics Illustrated Version of Return of the Jedi
- Marvel Super Special 27: Return of the Jedi
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (TPB)
- Classic Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (TPB)
Marvel Illustrated Books[edit | edit source]
Classic Star Wars[edit | edit source]
A Long Time Ago...[edit | edit source]
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 1
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 2
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 3
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 4
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 5
- Classic Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... 6
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 1: Doomworld
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 2: Dark Encounters
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 3: Resurrection of Evil
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 4: Screams in the Void
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 5: Fool's Bounty
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 6: Wookiee World
- Star Wars: A Long Time Ago... Volume 7: Far, Far Away
Devilworlds[edit | edit source]
Omnibus[edit | edit source]
A Long Time Ago....[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago.... Volume 1
- Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago.... Volume 2
- Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago.... Volume 3
- Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago.... Volume 4
- Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago.... Volume 5
Wild Space[edit | edit source]
- Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Original Marvel Years Vol. 1
- Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Original Marvel Years Vol. 2
- Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Original Marvel Years Vol. 3
- Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Original Marvel Years Vol. 4
- Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Original Marvel Years Vol. 5
Publication dates[edit | edit source]
When the series started in 1977, the direct market for comic books was still in its infancy and comic book specialty shops were rare. Because of this, Marvel kept dual records for publication dates: shipping dates and on-sale dates.
Shipping dates described when comics left the printer to go out to newsstands, groceries, and drug stores, which would generally put them on sale upon arrival. On-sale dates were provided by Marvel as a uniform Tuesday intended for all outlets—but particularly comic book shops—to place a comic on sale. For the length of the Star Wars series, the on-sale date is usually three weeks after the shipping date. Depending on a reader's region of North America, some may have received a comic shortly before the on-sale date, but all readers should have had access to the issue by that date.
Like with most magazines, the date on the cover is intended to tell retailers when to remove the book from store shelves, not relate when the item went on sale. For Star Wars, the cover date was normally three months after the shipping date, and two months after the on-sale date.
Worldwide variations[edit | edit source]
United Kingdom[edit | edit source]
Marvel UK published the British edition, Star Wars Weekly from February 1978. Thomas and Chaykin's adaptation of A New Hope was published over 12 issues, rather than the six-issue version printed in the US. From issue 118 in May 1980, it became The Empire Strikes Back Weekly, changing to The Empire Strikes Back Monthly in November that year. After a short run as Star Wars Monthly, the last issue was published in July 1983. The magazine then reverted to a weekly format with issue 1 of Return of the Jedi Weekly.
Sweden[edit | edit source]
Translated to Stjärnornas krig ("War of the stars"); Marvel's Star Wars comics were published by Semic Press AB between 1977 and 1987. The first years only as annual king-sized albums, that collected issues 1-6, 11-15, 18-23, 25-26, 31-34 and 39-44.
The first regular issue of the Swedish Star Wars comic book is listed as #1 1983/84. It was released bimonthly, but with comics from two American issues in every Swedish issue. 1985, the Star Wars title merged with the Indiana Jones title under the new title Månadens äventyr ("Adventure of the month") where every other issue "starred" Indiana Jones instead of Star Wars
Every American issue from 45 to 107 except 94 and 100 was published in the Swedish comic books, although the order of the issues was a bit more complex: 51-52, 55, 49, 56-63, 65, 68-91, 93, 92, 45-48, 50, 53-54, 64-67, 95-99, 101-107. Issue 65 was released twice.
Portugal, Spain, Mexico and Brazil[edit | edit source]
In these countries the comics had been published on the same collection, Comics Star Wars, by Planeta DeAgostini, each with their own translation. Twelve issues, containing from eight to eleven stories, were published in total, all hardcovers.
Italy[edit | edit source]
In 1978, Mondadori imprint Editoriale Corno published a series of thirteen double issues titled Guerre Stellari ("Stellar Wars"). Some issues contained Star Wars posters inside.
A fourteenth issue was a special edition: the adaptation of Return of the Jedi, titled Il ritorno dello Jedi.
The stories have been republished various times, but usually using more recent translations rather than the original one.
Denmark[edit | edit source]
Stjerne Krigen was the title of the six-issued Danish edition of Marvel's series. The series includes comic books with covers different from the covers of other nations, except for the first issue, where you can see a modified version of the movie poster.
Bibliography[edit | edit source]
- "Collections"—The Lucasfilm Fan Club Magazine 2
- "Collections: Foreign Star Wars Collectibles"—The Lucasfilm Fan Club Magazine 5
- "Star Wars Publications Timeline"—Star Wars Insider 23
- The Secrets of Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire
- "Movie Frame to Comic Frame: The Genesis of the Star Wars Comic Book!"—Star Wars Insider 122
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 152
Notes and references[edit | edit source]
- Cavanaugh, Patrick (2019-02-13). 'Star Wars' One-Shot From Marvel Comics Brings Back Legends Characters. Comic Book. comicbook.com. Archived from the original on February 13, 2019.
- Shooter, Jim (2011-07-05). Roy Thomas Saved Marvel. jimshooter.com. Archived from the original on August 9, 2011.
- Morrow. Archie Goodwin Interview. echostation.com. Archived from the original on March 5, 2016.
- The Secrets of Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire, p29
- Information from Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle, Marvel Age, Amazing Heroes, The Comic Reader and The Comics Journal
- Svenka STAR WARS-seriesajten (Swedish). hem.bredband.net. Archived from the original on August 15, 2019.