All For the Wookiee: The Star-Warsiest Moments In Last Month’s Star Wars Comics
Welcome back to All For the Wookiee, where we take a look at the recent Star Wars universe offerings from Marvel and pick the most Star Wars-ish moments. This month we'll look at Hutt fanboys, killer cat-people, Sherlock Holmes in Space and a muder bear celebration.
In this installment, we cover Star Wars #9 by Jason Aaron and Stuart Immonen, Lando #4 by Charles Soule and Alex Maleev, Kanan #6 by Greg Weisman and Jacopo Camagni, issue #9 of Darth Vader from Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca and the debut issue of the post-Return of the Jedi miniseries, Shattered Empire, by Greg Rucka and Marco Checchetto.
As usual, spoilers follow. You have been warned.
MOMENT I: Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaang
Stuart Immonen (and inking collaborator Wade von Grawbadger) drawing Star Wars is everything I ever wanted. Click here for a big version of this page and tel me you don't feel the same. The movement of the figures, the scale of the city shot, the ship designs, the overall warm-yet-grimy color (by Justin Ponsor); everything about the art in this issue is way better than we deserve.
MOMENT II: Otaku the Hutt
Well, this was a fun surprise. Turns out, the person responsible for the theft of Luke's lightsaber is a Hutt with a Jedi fetish. (And, apparently, abs?) Grakkus even has a couple Clone Wars-era MagnaGuards to aid him in his pursuit of Jedi artifacts. You might remember the MagnaGuards as General Grievous' bodyguards from Revenge of the Sith. Fast, intelligent and agile, they carry staffs made from an alloy that's invulnerable to lightsaber attack. (But don't think about it too much or you'll wind up in one of those, "Why didn't they build the whole droid out of the black box material" situations.)
A little later in the issue, we see Garruk's collection. Some Jedi starfighters in there, some statues, crates of other relics, and, it turns out, a mess of Jedi Holocron that he forces Luke to open.
It's an interesting counterpoint to the Emperor's traveling Sith museum in the Lando miniseries, and maybe it's just because we're both nerds with great abs and a predilection for collecting, but I'm liking this Garruk.
MOMENT III: More like "Han Shutup"
I'm pretty glad we finally got some movement on the Han/Sana/Leia plotline, because if we had to have another issue of them bickering on that planet, I would have screamed. So instead, we get them bickering in the cockpit of Sana's ship, which is 1,000 times more preferable.
MOMENT IV: The Brave & the Gold
A Chewbacca/Threepio road trip plotline?! That will wind up with Chewie fighting Dengar, AKA The Best Bounty Hunter?! They got my letters!
MOMENT V: TFW Bae Gets Possessed By the Dark Side
So Aleksin and Pavol aren't brothers or clones: they're lovers who were pulling this heist to be able to afford a clone of their own. And now Aleksin, driven crazy by Sith magic, has gotten all choppy with the lightsaber on his partner. Don't worry though, by the end of the issue both of these preternaturally-skilled killing machines will have been corrupted by Sith magic and set loose on the rest of the crew. But at least they're together, right?
MOMENT VI: A Not-So-Shocking Revelation
Called it. Not that it was too hard to figure out, to be honest.
MOMENT VII: One Jump Ahead of the Breadline
The sixth issue of Kanan was pretty forgettable, rehashing the first arc while trying it into a Rebels-period story that doesn't really work because it relies on you having to distinguish between three identical-looking Kallerans. Also, regular series artist Pepe Larraz is replaced by Jacopo Camagni, who is not bad per se, but is certainly no Pepe Larraz.
It's notable for this last panel, whiere Greg Weisman drops any pretense of Ezra not being Totally Just Space Aladdin by having him call himself the Star Wars equivalent of "street rat."
MOMENT VIII: Airlock Holmes
Meanwhile, over in Darth Vader, we get more of Inspector Thanoth, who is great, but let's be real: this dude's dead meat, right? He's too good at his job to not eventually find out Vader's behind the theft of the credits aboard the Son-tuul's Pride, right? And when that happens, well…
MOMENT IX: The Ol' 'Sith Lie Detector' Trick
Yeah, don't try lying to a guy who can read your thoughts, bro.
MOMENT X: A Little Givin Take
While Vader's assisting Inspector Thanoth with his investigation, Doctor Aphra's on a little fact-finding mission of her own. She hits up a Givin information broker named The Ante to get a little dirt on a guy named "Commodex Tahn."
I've always like the Givin because they look like very worried ghosts.
Anyway, The Ante gives up the info Aphra requested and it's … interesting.
So Vader's trying to track down Padmé, right? Because I mean, the Emperor already told him his kids died during childbirth, so what would stop him lying about Vader's wife, too? The interesting thing here is that there's no real reason Padmé can't still be alive. In fact, that opens up a lot of interesting stories, and it closes the continuity loophole where Leia tells Luke she remembers her mother as being "very sad" during their heart-to-heart in Return of the Jedi. But then again, I've read comics for most of my life and nobody ever never ever stays dead, so maybe that's coloring my read here. In any case, Darth Vader continues to be some good Star Wars.
MOMENT XI: Is This the Endor the Beginning?
Greg Rucka and Marco Checchetto's Shattered Empire starts off with a bang, as we're dropped into the final battle above the Endor moon as seen in Return of the Jedi. Our POV character is an A-Wing pilot named Shara Bey, and you know, it's nice to see Rucka branching out here and writing a tough-but-competent female protagonist, you know? (I kid, I kid.)
In all seriousness, after that whole fiasco with having the female pilots excised from the final cut of Jedi, it's nice to see them reinserted via both the comics and Chuck Wendig's recently-released novel Aftermath. (Which is a very good book. Ignore the sobbing fanboys upset by the demise of their beloved Expanded Universe.)
Also, if you liked this, you should probably check out Ghost Fleet artist Darren Warren Johnson's fan comic Green Leader. It's great.
MOMENT XII: Ain't No Party Like a Murder Bear Party
After surviving the battle over Endor, Shara makes her way through the celebration looking for… somebody. (SPOILERS: It's her husband, who was part of Han Solo and Princess Leia's team that disabled the shield generators that protected the second Death Star. SPOILERS AGAIN: He survived.)
I mostly picked this moment because I wanted to point out that Ewoks are rad and if you don't like them, well, have fun being a person who is wrong about everything. Yes, they are cute little teddy bears that kids love, but they are also stone-cold killers who will eat you up if you stumble into one of their traps or will smash your little chicken-walker things between two giant trees --- with you in them --- because you and your fascist regime trespassed on their property. And then once they're done killing you, they will play your helmets like drums and sing the most joyful song you ever did hear. They are wonderful little murder bears and I will brook no ill being spoken against them.
MOMENT XIII: How I Met Your Mother
So Shara's husband is named Kes Dameron. Why is that important? Oh, because Oscar Isaac's X-wing pilot in The Force Awakens is named Poe Dameron. So these are probably his parents and we probably literally saw his conception in this issue. So… collector's item?
MOMENT XIV: I'm Just So Tired of All These Star Wars
So, Kes and Shara get their freak on, and in the morning, they're drafted into a mission to raid an Imperial base and, well, Han has some bad news: the battle they won the night before wasn't really the end. Which we kind of expected, right? We all knew the death of the Emperor was just the beginning, and things like Shattered Empire and Chuck Wendig's Aftermath, released within days of each other, would flesh out exactly what happened to the Imperial remnant after Endor. Exactly what is in store is anybody's guess.
It's a whole new universe out there.
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