Ever since the release of The Force Awakens, Star Wars fans have been clamoring for more Poe Dameron. Thanks to Marvel, they’ll get it.
Star Wars: Poe Dameron, a new ongoing series starring the Resistance’s charismatic (and best) pilot, launches this Wednesday, April 6, with issue #1. Written by Charles Soule and illustrated by Phil Noto, the story begins with Poe and his X-wing squadron investigating sites of historical importance to the Force…and running into the First Order.
To mark the release of this major addition to Star Wars canon, Phil Noto has provided StarWars.com with exclusive commentary on the first five pages from the upcoming debut issue, offering insight on how he approached pages and panels. Lock S-foils in attack position and enjoy.
Phil Noto: Starting off with a nice iconic shot of Poe Dameron. The trickiest part of that was to try to make it a bit different than the cover image. Luckily, the style change helped very much in that regard. Then we have everyone’s new favorite droid, BB-8. As far as the planet goes, I needed some kind of terrain that would prevent ships from just landing next to the cave entrance. I figured tightly bunched rock formations would do the trick and also provide interesting obstacles for future dogfights.
Phil Noto: Poe’s black X-wing in all it’s glory. It was challenging to lay out this double-page splash because of the shape of the X-wing. I didn’t want the page break in the middle to cut the ship in half, but I also didn’t want to cram onto one side, thus defeating the purpose of a double splash. I actually really enjoy drawing the new fighter. It took a while to figure out the geometry and details of it, but between the Lucasfilm photo ref and the plastic toy, it’s just a matter of picking the right angles to make it look fast and exciting.
Phil Noto: And we have more cockpit shots. The new helmets are much more complicated than the old Rebel ones. Luckily, I had a bunch of Poe turnaround photos from when I was illustrating the Before the Awakening young adult novel. Much like the ship, once I figured out the formula, it wasn’t so hard. With everything being rocky, I tried to vary the color a bit to give it a sense of place and convey the feeling that he was flying from one chamber to another.
Phil Noto: I wanted to get across the feeling that this was a very large cavern that he was flying through, but keeping the fighter at a reasonable size so there weren’t just word balloons coming out of a dot on the page. The perspective and foreground stalactites helped convey this.
Phil Noto: Explosions are always fun and add action to the page. Originally, the cavern hologram was just going to be a video screen image but Charles had the idea of making it a floating 3D element. I’m pretty happy with the Oscar Isaac likenesses on this page as he’s incredibly tricky to draw. If you get his features just right, he’s Oscar Issac, the movie star. If not, it can turn out looking like some weird, background character actor.
Look for Star Wars: Poe Dameron #1 in comic book stores and digital this Wednesday!
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