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Star Wars Visions The Manga Anthology Review

Star Wars Visions Cover Art

Publisher Summary:

The first volume of Star Wars: Visions on Disney+ invited visionary Japanese anime studios to explore the Star Wars galaxy through their unique cultural lens. Now, top creators such as Kamome Shirahama and Yusuke Osawa bring those visions to life in manga form! Featuring adaptations of: “The Elder,” “Lop and Ochō,” “The Ninth Jedi,” and “The Twins.”

Authors: Kamome Shirahama, Yusuke Osawa, Keisuke Sato, Haruichi

Translation: E Takagi

Retouch & Lettering: Phil Christie

I purchased Star Wars Visions The Manga Anthology personally with my own funds for the intent of writing this review. Star Wars Visions The Manga Anthology Review



Star Wars Visions is an animated anthology series that streamed on Disney+ platform. The series consists of nine self contained animated short films set within the Star Wars Universe. The first season included various Japanese animation studios Kamikaze Douga, Studio Colorido, Geno Studio, Trigger, Kinema Citrus, Production I.G, and Science Saru.

In the May issue of Square Enix's Big Gangan magazine, it was announced that the Star Wars: Visions anthology anime will be receiving a manga adaptation which will feature a number of well known mangaka.

  • Kamome Shirahama is an illustrator and manga artist.

    • Recipient of the Eisner Award and the Harvey Award for her manga, Witch Hat Atlelier

    • Illustrated variant covers for Marvel and DC Comics.

    • Worked on the manga adaptation of "The Elder" in the Star Wars Visions Manga Anthology which debuted in the June issue of Big Gangan magazine

  • Haruichi is the artist behind the manga adaptation of Star Wars: Leia, Princess of Alderaan, and the short story I, Droid in Star Wars: The Legends of Luke Skywalker: The Manga.

    • Worked on the manga adaptation of "Lop and Ochō" in the Star Wars Visions Manga Anthology which debuted in the July issue of Big Gangan magazine.

  • Yusuke Osawa is a manga artist.

    • Worked on Spider-Man: Fake Red and Star Wars: The Mandalorian: The Manga.

    • Worked on the manga adaptation of "The Ninth Jedi" in the Star Wars Visions Manga Anthology which debuted in the August issue of Big Gangan magazine

  • Keisuke Sato is a manga artist.

    • Worked on the manga adaptation of Little Witch Academia.

    • Worked on the manga adaptation of "The Twins" in the Star Wars Visions Manga Anthology which debuted in the September issue of Big Gangan magazine

On October 13th, 2023: Viz Media announced they licensed Star Wars: Visions: The Manga Anthology for an English scheduled to release May 7th, 2024



This review will go over each of four different stories individually, then I'll have my final thoughts overall towards the end.

The Elder by Kamome Shirahama

A Color Page of Star Wars Vision's "The Elder" Featuring Jedi Master Tajin and Padawan Dan

Jedi Master Tajin and his Padawan Dan were exploring the outer rim before Tajin senses a big disturbance in the force coming from the planet Habo. The duo meet up with the local villagers to find out someone from an "unknown tribe" has landed on the planet a few days earlier. The two split up to find this individual with Dan exploring the mountains while Tajin watches over the location of the ship.

Two pictures, on the left is a mountain cliff and on the right is an abandoned space ship

After getting a closer look, Tajin recognizes it as an old Imperial Ship used by the Sith and radios Dan to be on the look out. Meanwhile, Dan spots a nearby animal who was recently hunted. However, the cuts on the animal seemed too "clean" for it to be a knife or a blade and deduces it's the work of a lightsaber. As he is about to radio Tajin with his findings, he gets surprised attacked by the mysterious individual with two blades. He reveals himself to be a Sith and immediately attacks Dan.

Padawan Dan getting surprised attacked by a sith with Jedi Master Tajin trying to communicate to Tajin to understand the situation

Tajin rushes over to Dan after not getting a response and notices that Dan is severely injured. Enraged by this, Tajin engages in combat with the Sith lord in the open field. The two fight with grace until Tajin gets the upper hand and takes down the Sith with a single strike concluding the battle. However, the Sith last minute blows up his ship leaving no evidence for Dan and Tajin to report back. As the two recover from their encounter, Tajin reminds Dan about the responsibility of great power before moving on to the next journey.

Final Thoughts

While this story is the shortest of the four in the anthology, I thought this was great opening to introduce those new to Star Wards and did a great job with capturing the tone and emotion with it's solid artwork.

In comparison to the animated short:

  • There was a few frames that were changed to fit the manga format (specifically the Tajin vs. Sith fight) otherwise it's mostly a it's a 1:1 adaptation of the short

  • The absence of color and sound does take away some of "impact" of these scenes, but it's not detrimental to the enjoyment of the story

  • While narratively it's simple, the art style and tone were a great fit for this adaptation and a good intro for the anthology

Overall: 3/5

"Lop and Ochō" by Haruichi

The cover page for "Lop & Ocho" featuring the main characters Lop and Ocho

We find ourselves on the planet of Tau who is undergoing a political struggle between it's Clan Leader and the Empire. Currently, the planet of Tao is struggling to modernize their planet despite having an abundance of natural resources to so. The Empire notices and offers to aid in the planet's efforts in exchange for their resources. While the planet of Tao initially agreed with their plans, they tribe notices that the methods the empire uses is negatively impacts their natural environment and resulted in the growing distrust towards the Empire.

An Imperial general and his soldiers standing over a civilization

This is where we meet our trio of characters: The Clan Leader of the Planet Tao Yasaburo, and his two daughters Lop & Ocho. We learn that while Yasaburo and Ocho are blood related, Lop was adopted into the family after escaping from her enslavement. At first the family got along pretty well, but overtime tensions rise as the empire made their appearance know. Ocho was more in-favor of the empire and believed they could help modernize Tao, while Yasaburo believes they should kick out the empire and find an alternative that would be less damaging to the enviroment. Lop on the other hand is indifferent to the matter, but wants everyone to get along like they used too back in the day.

Clan Leader of the Planet Tao Yasaburo arguing with his daughter ocho

This tension is broken when we learn that Yasaburo bombed a nearby Imperial structure which sends causes Ocho to lash out against her father infront of the tribes people. Lop steps into intervien, but at that point it's too late and the two go their seperate ways. She joins Ocho to try and figure out a remedy for the situation before they both stop infront of an Imperial ship with a bunch of soldiers on standby. It's revealed that Ocho went ahead and sided with Empire without telling Lop or Yasaburo and swore doing so was for the future of the planet Tao, while siding with their father's way would only hurt the planet

Broken by this, Lop runs back home to tell Yasaburo what transpired. Disappointed but determined, Yasaburo gifts their family treasure to Lop: a Lightsaber. He then explains that the lightsaber was from a Jedi who visited the planet long ago, but their presence brought a sense of bonding and tranquility to the planet. As lop accepts, Yasaburo sets out to try and bring Ocho back from the empire so that their family could be whole again. Worried by this, Lop takes the family treasure and trails behind Yasaburo in secret.

Lop coming to Yasaburo asking for help

When Lop reaches the destination, she finds Ocho lashing out against Yasaburo and begins to unleash a fury of attacks against him. Stunned by this, Lop steps in with the lightsaber to fight against her sister. We then get an emotional exhange between the two sisters about their family and the future of tau. With no sign of Ocho switching sides, Lop prepares one final attack which sends Ocho over the edge and into the abyss before getting away on a ship. With the battle over, Yasaburo asks Lop if the fight is over and she says "Ocho is gone, but don't worry we'll definitely become a proper family in time" which were the same words Ocho told to Lop back then.

Lop and Ocho dueling as Lop shouts to Ocho to come back to the light

Final Thoughts

I was absolutely moved by this story, the divided family backstory, the melodrama leading into the fight scene between Lop and Ocho, the art once again does a great highlighting the struggle between each of the characters in their facial expressions, attacks, and more.l,

In comparison to the animated short:

  •  Similar to "The Elder" There was a few frames that were changed to fit the manga format (the Lop vs Ocho ) otherwise it's 1:1 adaptation of the short

  • The manga format honestly captured that emotional weight, story beats, and pacing were felt in the animated short and is easily one of my favorites in the anthology

Overall: 4/5

"The Ninth Jedi" by Yusuke Osawa

Cover page for "The Ninth Jedi"

Set during a great era of war, We learn that the protection the Jedi offered to the galaxy is no more. We’re introduced to a force user named Ethan who received a encrypted transmission to visit the planet Hy Izlan. There, he meets six other force users who also received the same transmission and were told to visit this planet. Tensions rise as all seven individuals feel as if they have been lead into a trap by the sith before a new transmission breaks though. This transmission reveals that the planet Hy Izlan is inhabited by a ruler named Juro. He explains that he brought them here to restore the Jedi Order and reveals that he will offer them a weapon that the Jedi once wielded: a lightsaber. Skeptical about this, the seven individuals agreed to wait at the planet to see if Juro is telling the truth

Kara trying out the lightsaber by deflecting laser shots

We then transition to the planet below Hy Izlan, in which we meet sabersmith Lah Zhima and his daughter named Kara. We're shown that Lah produced seven total lightsabers, each one with the ability to react a person's connection to the force. Excited to try this out, Kara grabs ones and notices it's blade is short but transparent. It's not long before the unwanted show up and Lah sends Kara on her way to deliver the lightsabers to Juro on Hy Izlan. As kara makes her way, she notices that her father is captured by hunters and they're after her too. After escaping their pursuit, she makes way onto a ship and land on the planet Hy Izlan.

Kara and Jedi Ethan surrounded by the Sith

There Kara meets with the seven individuals and she explains that her father was captured by the sith. One of the individuals speaks up questioning if she had the lightsabers on hand in which she quickly said yes. Once all the lightsabers were passed out, another individual asks Kara is they knew the location of Juro in which she explains that she knew Juro from when she was a child. Satisfied with this answer, six of the seven individuals reveal themselves to be sith who intend to kill Juro and anyone associated with the jedi order. It's at this point Juro reveals himself thus sparking a battle on the Hy Izlan.

As Juro, Ethan, and Kara fend off the sith, Juro calls out of one of the remaining sith named Homen stating that "this isn't you". After a brief pause, Homen states that he was once a Jedi before getting corrupted by the dark side. When the dust settles, Juro restates he plans on rebuilding the Jedi order with the survivors of the attack and promises Kara that they'll rescue her father. Juro also explains to Kara that she has always been connected with the force since birth and with further training: she can become the 9th Jedi to help restore order in the galaxy

Final Thoughts

The twist at the end caught me off guard and was a welcome surprise when it came up! I was sold with the narrative, the art style, characters and their dialouge were suberb, though the pacing of this one felt a bit fast as compared to the other stories up to this point. My only downside is that I wish there was more as this felt like a set up to a grander story

In comparison to the animated short:

  •  The pacing of this one was definitely sped up compared to animation

    • Specifically in the chase scene, they redid that section to better fit the manga

  • Similar to "The Elder" The absence of color really took away the "surprise" factor in the twist towards the end

    • Specifically with Homen's scene where his lightsaber goes from red to green to showcase how he was once a sith but has returned to the "good" side

Overall: 3/5

"The Twins" by Keisuke Sato

Sith Lord Am sitting on the throne

Meet Karre and Am, two biological twins that were created through the power of the dark side to rule over the galaxy. The two have undergone a lot of training using the dark side and have become leaders in charge of a brand new superlaser that's capable of destroying any planet with a single charge. Pleased with this, Am wishes to test fire the canon on a nearby planet. However, they notice that the power source of this superlaser called a kyber crystal has been stolen. Upon further inspection, it's revealed that Karre has gone rouge and stolen the power source for himself

Sith Lord Am and Karre arguing with each other

We transition to Karre's perspective as he makes his way through the ship to escape. It's not long before he encounters his sister who demands an explanation on why he's gone rouge. Without warning, Karre makes his escaped before he is stopped by Am and the two begin their duel ontop of their combined ship. As the two duke it out, Karre reveals to Am that the reason he went rouge was not to defect to the rebellion , but he saw a vision in which he foresaw the use of the kyber crystal being the cause of Am's death. So he stole it to prevent that future from happening

Karre preparing his final attack against Am

Not believing what Karre has said, Am uses the crystal to power her metal exoskeleton and use it against Karre. In an act of desperation, Karre also uses the crystal to power his light saber to launch a counter attack against Am to try and save her. In a final act, Karre uses his ship to destroy the kyber crystal Am is using along with the superlaser before crashing on the planet tatooine. As the dust settles, he still feels his sisters presence and vows to rescue his sister from the vision that he saw.

Final Thoughts

Similar to Ocho and Lop, I really like the family dynamic that's presented here in this story. The fast paced action sequences and dialogue are welcomed here and similar to "9th Jedi" this feels like a set up to a bigger story that could happen later down the road.

In comparison to the animated short:

  •  They did such a great job adapting Studio Trigger's art style, presentation, and flow of the narrative

  • Similar to "The Elder" & "9th Jedi" it stinks that we don't have color which is what really made this short look and feel the way it did when you watch it

Overall: 3/5


Final Verdict

If you've already seen the original Star Wars Visions episodes when they first dropped, you're not missing out on much. But I still feel like it's worth going through again in this anthology as each of the different artists did such an amazing job adapting the source material in a manga format

If you're a manga fan that has never seen or heard of star wars, I think this is a great pick up as a good introductory into the universe of star wars and the many stories that are told within it.

Verdict: Buy It

Star Wars Visions The Manga Anthology from Viz Media is now available at all retailers

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