Time To Fight In Marvel’s Star Wars Mace Windu: Jedi of the Republic #5
Well, I hope you like the cover of this issue, because that’s about all there is to like. Buckle up for a bumpy ride, Mace fans. It’s all downhill from here. SPOILERS AHEAD… (I’m also gonna mention some stuff from The Last Jedi, so if you haven’t seen it BEWARE)
The issue opens with Kit Fisto doing what he does best: swinging a lightsaber and taking out Separatist battle droids. As Kit dispatches with the battle droids, he feels it necessary to offer a verbose tale of a predatory amphibian called a woorid from his home world, Glee Anselm. The woorid is a complex predator, who paralyzes the birds it eats with neurotoxin, and Kit Fisto uses it as a metaphor for the Republic taking down the Separatists. It’s a nice sentiment, but seems quite wasted on drone battle droids.
We come to the main course of this issue pretty early, that being Mace’s final showdown with the lackluster AD-W4. The villain was certainly intriguing in earlier issues, but has shown himself to be pretty one-dimensional. A petty mercenary droid whose ambition is no more than to cash in on the Clone Wars. The droid was pretty excited to kill Jedi, and it looks like he’s going to have a chance to kill one of the best.
As we’ve seen Sith Lords and other dark side users antagonize Jedi about the aggressive tendencies they try to suppress, AD-W4 is almost teasing Mace about them. We know that Mace is not the most soft-spoken of the Jedi and certainly not someone you’d want to get in a lightsaber fight with. AD-W4 sees this and exploits it as an emotional weakness. The droid doesn’t know he’s doing it though. He doesn’t know another Jedi just tried to bring down Mace because the Jedi thought he was being lead into betraying the Force.
The taunting gets heavier and heavier, calling Mace a hypocrite for even fighting. AD-W4 even says that maybe he is Force sensitive as the droid lands a few blows against Mace. This pushes Mace over the edge, as much of what he’s dedicated his life to has been questioned during this mission. Mace rallies and beats AD-W4 into submission. It looks like the battle is over, but AD-W4 has a wildcard.
Kit’s tale of amphibian predators from his home world didn’t seem to help him in the fight against a platoon of battle droids. Just as the Jedi accepts his fate, Rissa Mano shows up and saves the day. Kit and Rissa will live to fight another day. These pages are pretty useless for the story overall. I’ll get to the bigger complaints, but I feel like this Kit Fisto fan-service could have been used to give us more Prosset Dibs, who has the most compelling role in this series as the Jedi objector to the Clone Wars.
AD-W4’s big surprise is that he evacuated all the droids and supplies the Jedi came to take out in the first place. The Force is strong with Mace, so I’m assuming the droid ship explosion pictured above comes from those powers. After the ship explodes, Mace tells AD-W4 that he’s made the choice to fight for the good and not the evil. That’s the difference between him and AD-W4, and then Mace goes to decapitate (his favorite move!) the droid mercenary.
Just as Mace goes in for the killing blow, AD-W4 initiates his own “escape pod”…his head. Yes, AD-W4, droid mercenary extraordinaire, who JUST saw Mace blow-up an entire ship with the Force, chooses to launch his head from his body as a means of escape. I bet you can’t guess what Mace does as soon as that thing is a few meters in the air. No? No guesses? Oh, look at the frame above. This concludes the Jedi’s business on the planet Hissrich.
The issue picks up back on Coruscant in the Jedi Temple. It’s good to hear the people of Hissrich will be getting some follow-up after Mace’s pretty much pointless mission there. There are some bigger things to discuss, so let’s talk about Prosset Dibs.
Prosset Dibs sure sounds a lot like Luke Skywalker in The Last Jedi. I honestly thought this frame was great and really wish writer Matt Owens would have given Dibs more attention. While I disagree with Dibs approach to take up a lightsaber against Mace to try and make his point, what he says here is great. I can see future Luke Skywalker pumping his fist as Dibs delivers this scathing statement to the Jedi Council. What bothers me so much is that after these cautionary words, the Jedi brush aside everything he says. They don’t see the mirror one of their own is holding in front of them. It baffles me that this blatant point Dibs makes (and he’s right) is ignored and the Jedi continue to go down the path to their own destruction. Now, I’m not excusing the massive role of manipulation Sidious played in the Jedi’s demise, but you have to stop and think that if they would have stopped and listened to Dibs maybe they could have taken a different approach to the Clone Wars. I know pacifism isn’t the most exciting thing and would have made the prequels pretty dull, but it makes no sense that a room filled with Jedi Masters wouldn’t at least take what Dibs was trying to say seriously.
Instead of a good discussion, they sentence Prosset Dibs to serve out his time as a Jedi in the Jedi Archives. I would like to think he’ll spend his time writing some great lessons on the Force and how the Jedi seemed to be straying from their own teachings. I’m not trying to sound anti-Jedi here, but they are really coming off like a bunch of jerks in this issue. It’s certainly not time for the Jedi to end, but I think some a different perspective could have helped them along the way. Instead, this issue ends with a grandiose send-off to the call of war.
I started off enjoying Mace Windu, but the story became more and more convoluted, and then it ends like this. No moral to the story. In fact, the protagonists totally turn their back on whatever moral there was. Again, I feel like the “Jedi-objector” angle would have been a much more interesting one than the action and mediocre droids that filled this issue. Whether I should let go of my expectations or not, I feel like this series went off the rails and never came close to getting back on track. Also, the artwork by penciler Denys Cowan, inker Roberto Poggi, and colorist Guru-eFX is jumbled and all over the place. Nothing about this issue could save writer Matt Owens uneven tale.
Now that that’s over…bring on Thrawn!