As part of its Omnibus series, Dark Horse Comics has collected comic books from Star Wars's days with Marvel back in the 1970s and '80s. Volume 4 compiles issues #68-85, Annual #3 and Return of the Jedi #1-4. My reflections on the first three volumes can be found here, here and here.
I felt the strongest part of this collection was the comic adaptation of Jedi - quite a pleasant surprise, actually. To me, Return of the Jedi (ROTJ), classic that it is, was the weakest of the original trilogy. However, I'd say the comic adaptation is actually the best of the three. For the first time, the adaptation was a separate series from the main Marvel run. I expect timing was key to the success. The ROTJ comics were released a full five months after the actual movie, plenty of time for the creators to have seen the film themselves. As such, the ROTJ adaptation is a more faithful rendering of the original than had been possible with the previous two movies. The artwork (Al Williamson and Carlos Garzon) is especially impressive. Certain elements of the story, like Leia's initial encounter with Wicket, are glossed over in the comics, undoubtedly with the safe assumption that most readers had already seen the movie. Even with the changes, the heart of the story is well-preserved.
Volume 4 only includes five issues with stories set after the events in ROTJ, a time period untouched by the movies until 2015. As discussed in previous posts, the Marvel comics are low canon in the Expanded Star Wars Universe, lower than the more extensive Dark Horse Comics and many of the fan fiction novels. As such, the Marvel version of life after Jedi isn't likely to be given much consideration in the sequel trilogy. Even so, it's fun to watch our friends struggle to build a new republic and otherwise sort out their post-Rebellion lives. Several missions are made to establish diplomatic ties with old friends in an effort to build a new government. Both Han and Lando pursue balance between their old scoundrel selves and their new respectable reputations.
My favorite new character from the collection is LE-914, a manifest droid who belonged to Rebel Tay Vanis. I like her partly because she is obviously intended to be female, unusual in the Star Wars universe. Her story, featured in issue #80, is also a surprisingly touching tale of devotion to Vanis.
I have only one more Omnibus volume to go for the old Marvels. My curiosity in the post-ROTJ story is holding firm so far, even knowing much of it's been contradicted by higher canon material since. I look forward to reading the last 22 Marvel issues.