The anticipation is over! The Star Wars adventures are back with Charles Soule taking the reins. The timeline of this reboot takes place between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. The battle between the Empire and the Rebellion rages on. Han Solo, currently frozen in carbonite, is being taken by the bounty hunter Boba Fett to Jabba’s Palace. Luke has just discovered that the most feared man in the galaxy is his father. After making a narrow escape from Cloud City, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, Lando Calrissian, Luke Skywalker and their faithful droid companions R2-D2 and C-3PO must come to the Rebellions aid in a fire fight with the Empire. Without ace pilot Han Solo it won’t be an easy task. Let’s take a look into the first issue of Marvel’s Star Wars reboot!
We begin the first issue with Luke having a flashback to his lightsaber duel with Darth Vader. As we all know, this is when Luke discovers he is the son of Vader. He is told this by Vader himself, not Obi-Wan or Master Yoda. This makes Luke feel angry, confused and lost. He can’t understand why they would not tell him this from the beginning. As he sits on the Millennium Falcon thinking over what just took place, Lando, Chewie and Leia try to put together their next plan of action. Both Leia and Chewie still don’t trust Lando at this point. I would say with good reason after Lando briefly turned them over to the Empire.
As Chewie, Lando, and Threepio continue their banter, Leia checks on Luke. He tells her that during his battle with Vader he reached out to Ben, or Obi Wan, with the force but there was no answer. Leia embraces him and assures him they will go after Han eventually but they must first help the Rebellion. She instructs Chewie and Artoo to plot a course to the rendezvous point in the Mid Rim. Lando tries to argue his case to run and stay safe but the stubborn and fearless Leia Organa will not be swayed. She will not leave her people behind. In a classic shot, we see the Falcon jump to light speed.
We shift to the Mid Rim where the Rebels are being bombarded by Imperial forces. Aboard an Imperial Star Destroyer named, Tarkin’s Will, Commander Zahra watches the battle with satisfaction. Side note, I love that this particular destroyer is named after Grand Moff Tarkin! The Imperial forces have the Rebels completely blockaded. On top of that, the Imperials have also contained the Rebels at their other location near Malastare. For those who don’t know, Malastare is a forest planet also located in the Mid Rim. During her conversation with her Lieutenant, Commander Zahra is informed that one X-Wing has escaped the blockade. She instructs them that she wants one gun on manual control. With perfect precision, she locks on the X-Wing and takes it out with one shot from the Destroyer. We see Zahra relish the kill in this panel. She looks to be a true Imperial commander, ruthless and determined to destroy the Rebel insurgence by any means. Tarkin would be proud.
During the battle in space, Rebel ground soldiers wait for the next move. Either to board an Imperial ship, jump to lightspeed, or be blown into dust. One of those rebel soldiers happens to be Kes Dameron, anxiously watching his wife, Shara Bey, weaver her X-Wing through the fire fight outside. We knew that Poe’s parents would be involved in the reboot after seeing them in the one shot issue, Star Wars: Empire Ascendant. I personally love that Poe’s parents will be involved, for how many issues it is uncertain. I also enjoy that Shara Bey is a Rebel fighter pilot. I am sure that she is an ace pilot just like her son will one day be. As Kes and the others wait for the next move they see a ship coming out of hyperspace into the battle. To their satisfaction it’s the one and only, Millennium Falcon.
As the Falcon flies into view, Commander Zahra dispatches an entire TIE Fighter squadron and all turbo-lasers, not devoted to the blockade, to take down the ship. Leia contacts Rebel forces for a status update, then tells Chewie and Lando that they will need to make a hole in the blockade so that everyone can escape. Lando convinces Chewie to let him pilot the Falcon, while Leia and Luke take the guns. Lando is uncertain they will get out of this alive and then discovers the Falcon had two ST2 missile launchers installed to it. The Falcon is then hit by some TIE blasts. They must do something quick or they will be blown away for good this time! As Luke struggles to use his turret with one hand, he begins to have flashbacks again. From his battle with Vader, to Ben Kenobi, back to Vader. Then something amazing happens….
Through the force, Luke takes control of the entire Tie squadron and disables their ships. Lando doesn’t hesitate and makes his move toward one of the Destroyer’s. The Falcon launches its missiles, creating the hole in the blockade that the Rebels needed. They all jump to hyperspace, escaping the grip of the Empire again.
Angry with the results of the battle, Commander Zahra knows she has to face the music. She makes a call to the Executor. As expected, Lord Vader is not pleased with the Rebels escaping again. He tells Zahra that she can kill any of the Rebels except one, the boy who destroyed the Death Star. His son, Luke Skywalker. He obviously doesn’t tell Zahra that Luke is his son but lets her know that he is off limits. Zahra escapes Vader’s force choke, this time.. This will be her last chance, it seems.
The Rebels make it to their back-up rendezvous point, Gamma-Nine. They all gather to discuss the events that have just taken place. The Empire found both of their rendezvous locations. This can only mean that they have found a way to break the Rebels’ codes. If true, this would be a huge hit to the Rebellion and leave them little options of communication and hideouts. Any time the Rebels communicate the Empire can pinpoint their location. It is clear that the Rebellion is in trouble and must think of something quickly before the Empire wipes them out.
We end the first issue with Luke and Artoo alone. Luke tries to reach out to Master Yoda and Ben. Questioning why they won’t answer him. Why will they not help him when he is so lost. We see Luke’s reaction. So much anger and emotion. Much like his father. Luke is alone right now, confused and jaded by the recent events on Cloud City. He questions himself, wondering if he will ever be a Jedi. If not, then what will he be?
Review and Rating:
What a way to start off this reboot! I really enjoyed reading this and my expectations are met. I love this storyline because it shows the adventures between the events of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Luke is struggling to find himself and this issue really shows what power he has in him. He still has no idea how strong he is with the Force but we all know he will one day. I would also expect some new characters to be introduced as well. Something else that stood out to me is the amazing artwork in this issue. My hats off to artist Jesús Saiz and colorist Arif Prianto, I’m looking forward to seeing more! I think this reboot will be what we all expected and more.
I also would like to thank Val, Kyle, and SWNN for the opportunity to write this review! I hope everyone enjoys and hope to contribute more!