As the War of the Bounty Hunters crossover comes to its last few issues, the final issue in the series of bounty hunter one-shots arrives.
IG-88 has been a fan favorite since he first appeared in the iconic bounty hunter lineup of The Empire Strikes Back. We last saw him face off against Darth Vader, decapitated and left to rust. This issue picks up sometime after that, with IG left shut down in a scrap yard.
These bounty hunter one-shots have been fun, if a little unnecessary at times, but one thing they do seem to be doing is setting up the bounty hunters for future plots. One-shots have tendency to be quick, forgettable adventures that end in the exact same spot they started in. This issue is a nice arc of IG’s revival, but unfortunately is a little bloated, with a lot of what seems like filler between the plot.
RB-919 is a organic/machine hybrid who specializes in repairing. He narrates the first half of the issue, detailing his recovery and repair process of the infamous killing machine, IG-88.
He has been hired by Deva Lompop, who has appeared in most of these one-shots, to restore the droid and insert programming to hunt down Boba Fett.
RB is successful in his mission to bring the bounty hunter back online, unfortunately, IG and Lompop have no other use for him.
With the ship cleared of lifeforms, the newly revived IG follows his new prime directive and contacts his new boss.
Lompop gives him everything he needs for his new mission: to infiltrate Boba Fett’s ship and retrieve Solo as a last ditch effort for Crimson Dawn.
IG travels to Tatooine to confront Boba. So much of these plot points are stuffed with filler though. While it is somewhat interesting hearing IG-88’s inner monologue as he realizes his limits, it doesn’t always add to the story and feels like fluff.
Boba Fett has landed on Tatooine to return Solo to Jabba, so we know the outcome of this battle, Fett quite easily defeats IG by shooting a pipe line and encasing the droid in the freezing liquid.
Left to unfreeze as Fett escapes, IG suffers a crisis of identity; programmed to be the best but now faced with the reality that he isn’t. He flies back to scrap yard we find him on at the start of the issue.
This ending might be an homage to the IG-88 unit fought in the junk heaps in the 1997 video game Shadows of the Empire.
Overall, this issue serves its purpose to bring IG-88 back into the fold of characters after his defeat by Darth Vader. It doesn’t give a clear picture of when we might see the killer droid again, but leaves him in a good place for future writers. If this issue serves as the start of an interesting arc for IG, with him changing from his assassin ways, as the issue implies, then it would elevate the issue.
As it is now though, this issue is fine as a little epilogue adventure in the scheme of the War of the Bounty Hunters event, but hardly essential reading.