Tuesday, July 3, 2012

32 BBY: Tales #24: Marked

I pitied Darth Maul in this story, especially in the last box.  He just wants what we all want: someone to love us.
Tales #24, Marked, was an awesome little late.  As a matter of fact, I think it’s in my top 5 of Star Wars Tales stories.  Its premise is simple and it’s in line with what we know about Sith philosophy: only the strong survive.  Darth Maul is sent to a remote planet to investigate a significant disturbance in the Force.  There he comes into contact with Silas, a Dorvian strong in the darkside of the Force.  From there, the two engage in a death match – the winner gaining the honor of being Darth Sidious’ apprentice.  For Maul it’s a test, for Silas it’s an interview.   

Maul comes out victorious, and learns a valuable lesson: to be a Sith means constant improvement, but with that means constant dis-satisfaction with who you are.  And Sidious will be right there, offering Maul back-handed compliments until he decides he’s had enough.
Silas was an interesting character in this story.  It was also a shame Maul killed him.  His potential seemed evident.  I would have loved to see this ruthless character operate as a Sith.

I really don’t have much else to say.  Marked furthered the background of Maul and added more dimensions to him.  I think from now on I’ll always see that scared little boy under that tough and tattooed exterior.
For my next post I’ll be taking a look at Episode 1 Adventures.  Until then my friends, may the Force be with you.


  1. I liked this story, too, but I don't know if it's still canonical. TCW has established that Maul's tattoos are Dathomiri, not Sith. :-(
    By "look at Episode 1 Adventures," do you mean Search for the Lost Jedi?

  2. Interesting, the origins of Maul's tattoos went by me. What's the difference between Sith and Dathomirian tattoos? Is it in how they are applied, or just that in TCW Maul received his tattoos when he was on Dathomir, while in Marked it was Sidious who gave him his tattoos?

    Yes, I mean "Search for the Lost Jedi". I have books 1-4, but I'm missing the rest (and all the game books). I took your advice and went to interlibrary loan, but I don't know how long before I'll hear back on the request.

  3. Maul's tattoo origins actually have been a bit of a mess for some time, because of tattoos many Zabrak's have. Some Zabraks crashed on Dathomir and influenced the Dathomiri appearances. Plus there was a Sith Academy on Dathomir during Bane's time, so who influenced whom isn't that clear. Perhaps some essential guide will some day have a complete explanation, but without it it's anyone's guess where the tattoo style originated. Maul was tattooed while he was just a baby on Dathomir, though. That part was changed.

  4. Super fascinating. I don't remember there being anything about a Sith academy on Dathomir (not that it doesn’t exist). Was it mentioned in Path of Destruction? When did these Zabrak land on Dathomir?

    I think I prefer the original manner in which Maul revived his tattoos, as presented in this comic. Being tattooed by Sidious seems more “initiation" like. Being tattooed as a baby just seems cruel. Who tattooed him in the new version, or is it even mentioned?

  5. I don't have the sources at hand, but Sith Academies on Dathomir and Umbara, among others, were mentioned in the prologue of Path of Destruction.

    Zabraks coming to Dathomir, breeding with humans so that there became a hybrid named Dathomirian, is in Leland Chee's article in Insider 122. I don't remember properly, but the Dathomirian clan may have a ritual where the mothers of babies or the entire clan makes the tattoos with magick.

  6. I thought Path of Destruction was the source. I'm going to have to read Chee's article, sounds interesting. I also like how more magic is working its way into Star Wars.