Another week and another issue of Marvel’s Star Wars in the cannon. The 24th issue of the titular series is certainly an improvement from the previous one, but I’m still a little disappointed in the gimmicky nature of the character’s dialogue and interactions. It feels like we are getting close to the end of “The Last Flight of the Harbinger” arc. Read on for my review, but BEWARE OF THE SPOILERS.
If you read my review of the previous issue, you’ll remember I had plenty to complain about. Much of the issue was devoted to a silly race between Han and Leia. Well, that gets a little better, but what is a marked improvement is the treatment Luke and Sana get. We find them in the bowels of the Harbinger, a Star Destroyer that is slowly falling apart from the inside out, looking to find out what is causing so much trouble. They are certainly going to get some answers.
My biggest complaint about this arc is how off the mark I feel Jorge Molina’s interpretations of Han and Leia are. This frame is the best one in the issue, but they look downright cartoonish in most frames. I’ll stop being too critical, because I feel like the dynamic between the two was not as silly as the last issue. Leia realizes she needs Han to fly the Harbinger to the aid of Tureen VII. The pilot is used to flying hunks of junk that don’t appear to like much, but in this instance, the Star Destroyer has got much less going for it than would appear.
In case you forgot, a squad of Stormtroopers has boarded the Harbinger. We sure have been seeing a lot of people blown out of airlocks in the SW comic world lately. The Stormtroopers are not so subtly making their way through each deck, dismantling everyone sent to aid in the fight against the Empire in the new theater of the raging war.
The cadre of specified troops certainly indicates the Empire is operating with precision against the three most wanted members of the Rebel Alliance. Molina’s art is badass here, and he does a great job with reintroducing this motley crew. These three are just taking the bridge, and as they radio down to their commander, Sana and Luke are meeting him. Sana is stuck in a fire fight with the rest of the Scar Squad. They’ve hit a dead end, so the Rebel grunts take matters into their own hands.
A major miscommunication nearly sends Sana blasted out the airlock with her appropriately equipped Rebel grunts. Thus begins a zero-gravity, zero-atmosphere brawl between the Stromtroopers and the grunts. This, just in time for the Harbinger‘s arrival at Tureen VII.
Han will have some piloting to do to get them out of this one. Given the bridge is literally being blown apart, it should be interesting to see where he goes after a few maneuvers he makes, which I won’t give away here. Oh yeah, Luke’s busy, too….
Luke’s been busy dealing with an old acquaintance. Remember the Gamemaker he met a while back when he was fighting Rancor’s in Grakkus the Hutt’s coliseum on Nar Shadda. Remember how the Gamemaker checked in with Vader after everything was said and done. Well, guess who Commander Kreel is! The Gamemaker, and not one who shies away from a good, old-fashioned lightsaber duel. I admit I was apprehensive when I saw a Stormtrooper holding a lightsaber on the cover of this issue. Jason Aaron, writer extraordinaire of this series, certainly made good on the tease. I’ll be interested to learn the story behind Kreel’s tutelage in lightsaber combat.
Not a bad issue. The stage is set for a pretty fantastic next issue. By the last page, it looks like we have a pretty cool space battle on our hands, folks. Especially when an unexpected TIE Fighter pilot swoops in to join the party. I won’t tell you who, but his name rhymes with Darth Vader. The only reason I’m spilling the beans on Vader’s cliffhanger appearance is because the SWNN Staff and I had a discussion this Saturday, whilst recording the Cannontina Podcast, about the massive amount of Vader we fans have been treated to since Disney essentially relaunched the Star Wars Universe. What do you guys think? Do you think more Vader is better? Do you guys feel the more he shows in almost every medium almost dilutes the ominous mystique? Sound off in the comments, or better yet, the Comics and Books section of the Cantina