The Shadows of the Empire Kenner Special two-part series were tie-in comics to the Shadows of the Empire. The first issue depicts the events preceding and surrounding the meeting between Darth Vader and Prince Xizor. The issue is recognized by the digits 530104.00 on the front cover.
Ultimate victory lies within the grasp of the dreaded Galactic Emperor Palpatine as the tattered remnants of the Rebel fleet desperately seek sanctuary and time to muster new allies.
A grim Luke Skywalker, reeling from Darth Vaders' revelation on the cloud city of Bespin, ponders his own destiny and that of the Rebel Alliance. Meanwhile, the search ensues for Han Solo, captive of the notorious bounty hunter, Boba Fett.
Now Darth Vader must double his efforts to crush the Rebellion, for a new, hidden enemy is rising to power, and the enemy seeks nothing less than Vader's place at the Emperor's side!
Luke Skywalker is eager to go flying again after his battle with Darth Vader, as his friends are in the field risking their lives for the Alliance. His droids, C3PO and R2D2 along with princess Leia discourage him to do so as he has not yet achieved full control over his prosthetic hand. Rogue Squadron is then seen fighting Empire troops and just as they are to send their coordinates to Darth Vader, Wedge Antilles finishes them off.
Darth Vader is contacted by his master, the Emperor, who is disappointed with Lord Vader's failure at Bespin. Vader counters this with saying he planted the seed of the Dark Side within Luke, but still the Emperor is dismayed. The Emperor than commands Vader to put aside his plans for Luke for the moment and tasks him with accompanying the Imperial Fleet to conclude arrangements with Prince Xizor. Vader, knowing of the connection of Xizor with the Black Sun, does not trust Xizor but is ordered by the Emperor to do as he is told.
Xizor discusses with the Emperor, suggesting Vader's emotions cloud his judgment, but the Emperor disagrees.
Darth Vader employs the imperial agent, Wrenga Jixton, to oversee what Vader believes will be a rescuing action form Luke Skywalker when his friend Han Solo is delivered to Jabba the Hutt by Boba Fett. He orders Jix to capture Luke alive or his life will be taken.
Xizor discusses with his assistant Guri and his true objective is revealed, using Luke Skywalker to bring down the Empire.
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- "ComicScan: The Graying of the Galaxy"—Star Wars Galaxy Magazine 7
- "ComicScan: Rare, but Sometimes Well-Done"—Star Wars Galaxy Collector 2