'Darth Vader and Son' Book: Reviews
Darth Vader was actually a pretty good dad. Or, he at least tried to be. Think about it. He did ask Luke to "rule the galaxy as father and son."
Vader wasn't all whip and no carrot, he might've been stern, but he wanted the best for his young padawan he was just misunderstood - this is the train of thought explored in cartoonist Jeffrey Brown's new book, "Darth Vader and Son."
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"I would think that Vader would be, in a way, a good father that would raise a bad person," cartoonist Jeffrey Brown says. "He would be one of those fathers who's very stern - not very warm and cuddly, but trying to impart his knowledge and values on his child. I think that most people would think that imparting your values on your children is an important part of parenting, but when your values are, you know, killing people, [it's] maybe not so good."
Brown rose to fame with the publication of his comic "Clumsy" in 2002, and began "Darth Vader and Son" in earnest in 2009, when Google contacted Brown to create a Star Wars-themed version of their logo, which would appear on their search engine on Father's Day. He produced a handful of sketches, and when Google ultimately passed, Brown took the idea to Chronicle Books, who in turn pitched the idea to Lucasfilm. They gave Brown the go-ahead.
"I wanted to be respectful and to do justice to them," Brown said. "For me, this book was a celebration, or love letter, to Star Wars using humor."
Star Wars was the first movie Brown saw in a theatre, and the trilogy remained a big part of his childhood.
"I still have a lot of my childhood Star Wars drawings. For me, Star Wars wasn't just this thing that I liked ... it was something that was a big part of sparking my own imagination, and my interest in art. I had the Empire Strike Backs notebook that had all the storyboards by Joe Johnston, and later on had The Return of the Jedi sketchbook that had a lot of Ralph McQuarrie concept sketches. Seeing these were drawings that people were making - like this was their career, and how big a role that art played in making those movies - I think that was actually a big part in inspiring me."
Brown's own son, Oscar, is five-and-a-half-years old. While he has Star Wars books and Lego and action figures, he's never seen the movies.
"This year for his birthday I'm going to maybe watch the first movie with him," said Brown.
The reviews have been largely positive so far with "Darth Vader and Son" currently scoring a 4.32/5 on Goodreads.com from 493 reviews, and a 4.7/5 on Amazon from 39 reviews.
"Jeffrey Brown has written/drawn a wonderfully funny comic about fatherhood from the point of view of Darth Vader and a young Luke Skywalker. The book is a series of one page skits, drawn and coloured in the best artwork Brown has produced yet, and if you're a fan of the original Star Wars trilogy, you'll love it."
"This is the perfect book for any young Star Wars fan or parent of young kids."
"This could, quite possibly, be the cutest book of all time; every nerdy parent needs to read it. I can't wait to buy it for some of my friends and their children as the kids grow up. It's adorable and funny and full of little Star Wars details. I caught something new in it every time I read it. It's a quick, but enjoyable read."
"Jeffrey Brown has created a perfect representation of Gen X fatherhood through a series of cartoons about the unlikely pairing of Darth Vader and his four-year-old son, Luke Skywalker. Brown found the sweet spot by placing the characters in familiar Star Wars settings and applying lines of classic Vader dialogue to mundane parenting situations ("Perhaps I can find new ways to motivate you.")."
"When looking at the pictures in the preview, I was sold on this book, but not for my son. I ended up buying it for my wife. Looked through it today and it's great, really adorable artwork. Don't buy if you're looking for a story to read your little kid, but for a mom or dad, this is just great. Like the other reviewers said, it's more of a gift book than anything else, but as a gift book for a parent it's fantastic."
"If you know a guy Star Wars fan with a young son, this is the perfect gift. Cute and sweet it will certainly bring smiles again and again."
"My son and I love this book, we have read it together many, many times and he often chooses to read it by himself and still laughs each time! Something there for both of us geeks."