A long time ago (1977-the late 80s), in a galaxy far, far away (okay, so not really, but work with me here!) Marvel Comics had the license to make Star Wars comics. Last week, it was announced that come 2015, these comics will return The House of M for distribution and publishing!
In 1991, a small-time indie comics company known as Dark Horse Comics managed to nail down the rights to the prized franchise. Dark Horse would use this franchise to build itself into one of the biggest publishers in comics. Without Star Wars, most of the other quality license work and brilliant creator-owned projects Dark Horse has ever printed would not have come to pass. To this day a sizable chunk of Dark Horse’s output and income is dedicated to its handling of the Star Wars property, a fact that Dark Horse has never lost sight of. Even when forced by Lucas to make tie-ins to the lemons that are the Star Wars prequels, Dark Horse’s comics was considered one of the bright points fans of the series as they did their best to create fresh and dynamic stories for the fans.
Carol Roedoer, the current director of Lucasfilm Franchise Publishing over at Disney Publishing Worldwide, had this to say about Dark Horse and their contributions:
“Dark Horse Comics published exceptional ‘Star Wars’ comics for over 20 years, and we will always be grateful for their enormous contributions to the mythos, and the terrific partnership that we had.”
While the loss of Star Wars won’t cripple Dark Horse, I expect it to be walking around with a limp for the next several years.
Ever since Disney acquired Lucasfilm in 2012, everyone has assumed Dark Horse was running on borrowed time as Disney had already purchased Marvel Comics. If anything, the only shocking part in this entire story is the speediness at which Marvel appears it will be capitalizing on the franchise once it is within their clutches again. Years ago, when Disney first bought Marvel, one of the first franchises they snatched back was the rights to make Muppets comics and classic Disney comics from BOOM! Studios. Everyone expected the announcement of Muppets, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Uncle Scrooge, and Darkwing Duck comics to be forthcoming, but it has been years and despite renewed interest in these characters, no news of any new series for these properties has been announced as of yet.
“Do ye lads at Marvel not like money or something?”
While never overly into Star Wars comics, I have read and enjoyed multiple one-shots and mini-series over the years. Much of my knowledge of the expanded Star Wars universe and continued interest in the franchise came from my reading and enjoyment of the content Dark Horse put out. I offer my sincere thanks and a respectful tip of my hat for all the hard work and dedication Dark Horse has put in over the years. Every Star Wars comics should show Dark Horse some love and try some of their other titles, I personally recommend both The Goon and Hellboy.
So are you excited about this new age of Star Wars comics? What do you think the future of Dark Horse will be? Let your opinions be known in the comments below!
Via The Wrap