I love this comic adaptation of Rogue One, especially this issue. If you loved Rogue One, I urge you to start taking a look at this Marvel adaptation. You will get a whole new appreciation of the film. It’s so good that it honestly feels like I’m experiencing the story for the first time. I’m assuming you’ve seen the film, but if not, BEWARE THE SPOILERS…
If there is any character that didn’t get a fair amount of screen time in Rogue One, it has to be Lyra Erso. If you read the prelude novel, Catalyst by James Luceno, Lyra is a central figure in Galen’s evolving morality, and she is the rock of the Erso family. Yes, her death in the opening minutes of the film was necessary, but I don’t think anyone who didn’t read Catalyst (it’s fantastic, by the way) can grasp how devastating a blow it must have been to Galen and Jyn. Yes, I know losing a mother and wife is heavy enough, but Lyra Erso was very special. Brilliant in her own right, she realized what the Empire actually was from the beginning, and was responsible for saving her family from Krennic. We get a quick glimpse of her here in the opening pages of this issue, and her expression tells you everything you need to know about her opinion of Krennic. Throughout the friendship and partnership Galen thought he had with Krennic, Lyra saw right through it. I think everyone pretty much knew Lyra was doomed once Krennic caught up to them, but if you read Catalyst, it was certain Lyra was going to be put down with Krennic giving the order. The Erso family lived on Coruscant for some time, and this frame is Krennic recalling the days where even he might have believed he had a true friend in Galen. For a moment, Krennic seems he may have remorse, but we all know better than that.
There’s a lot of emotion in this issue. The attack on the Eadu Imperial facility is felt by both sides of the conflict. This was one of my favorite frames in the issue. It’s such a perfect visual metaphor for Jyn’s lifelong struggle: on the run from the fire behind her, heading to the only thing in front of her that might be good and right. This time it’s her dying father. I may have said this before, but Emilio Laiso’s art in these issues is well worth the cover price.
Jyn confronting Cassian was one of my favorite moments in Rogue One. This was a scene I looked forward to, and the team of writer Jody Houser and artist Emilio Laiso did not disappoint. Again, I really felt like I was experiencing this story for the first time. This adaptation not only does justice to the story, it enhances every moment.
Well, hello there, Mustafar. Yes, you are reading that right. I know it’s been confirmed that Vader’s castle is on Mustafar, so this just underscores it for me. On a side note, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say we will be seeing this castle in either The Last Jedi or Episode IX. I’ve got a hunch that instead of Marvel Studios post-credit sequences, Star Wars films may give hints to what may appear in successive films by dropping locations or new aliens. Just an idea, but it would be a shame if this is to be the only glimpse we get of Vader’s castle.
Well, the Vader scene in this adaptation is pretty flat. We don’t get a look at that Bacta tank. Hell, we don’t even see it, other than the cover. In the comic, it’s essentially the same scene, sans the Bacta dressing, and this odd frame of Vader watching Krennic’s shuttle depart. I was a little bit let down, as I was really looking forward to that Bacta dressing in comic form. Oh well. Hopefully they’ll make up for it when Vader goes full Jason Vorhees with a lightsaber.
Here’s a big scene that did not end up in the film. Mon Mothma has a pretty substantial conversation with Jyn. You can tell the leader of the Rebel Alliance sees a kindred spirit in Jyn. I almost got the sense Mon Mothma was a little envious of the freedom Jyn had to do what she felt she needed to, while Mon Mothma still had to maintain an aristocratic air. I’d love a good story about Mon Mothma’s early days in the Rebellion. Despite being a senator, I’m guessing she’s pretty good with a blaster or an X-Wing, especially if either are pointed in the direction of the Empire.
When the Rebel officers break away with Jyn to head over to Scarif, Cassian explains this is not only a reckoning, but a redemption. We get a few quick glimpses of the awful memories these officers have. They know they are fighting a good fight, but taking lives still haunts them, and the Scarif attack is a chance they have to make a substantial difference in the galaxy. The heroes of the Rebel Alliance probably don’t believe they are heroes. It preaches to the universal truth that war is brutal and slow, where the glory is either to die fighting for what you believe, or survive and honor those that did not. This is their chance to find honor on either in either of those fates.
And they’re off!!!
Very pleased with how this series is turning out. Sure, it’s not perfect, but I’m happy to be reading a story I already love from a different perspective. I’m hoping they give the eventual The Last Jedi adaptation the same treatment, as I was pretty disappointed with The Force Awakens one. I wouldn’t blame you for holding out until all these issues are released in a volume, but whatever you do, make sure you get your hands on this. You’ll be very pleased!