It’s quite interesting reading about the making of Dark Empire II and Empire’s End as you can tell Veicht and Kennedy weren’t overly enthusiastic about making them as the first series was pretty much intended as a self contained story. Though I would say that Dark Empire II deserves some credit, nor just foe the top notch art, but for some interesting ideas it played with. I especially like Ood Bnar; the idea of an ancient Jedi that is so old he became an old gnarled tree is about as mythological as you can get. His origin story in Tales of the Jedi was a tad bland I think, but that series overall did a great job at feeling different from the OT while still fitting within the SW mold. It definitely embraced the more fantasy-like elements. As much as I like Timothy Zahn, I do think it’s a real shame that the EU used his style as their standard instead of embracing the wilder aspects of the early Dark Horse comics. Like the Marvel comics before they weren’t afraid to go crazy with the IP and try new things, but after a few years they began playing it safe (the comic crash in the 90’s probably didn’t help either) and much of it began feeling very formulaic. Plenty of solid stories, but not living up to it’s full potential IMO.