Marvel has taken care of the Star Wars mythos quite well so far, with series taking place post-A New Hope but pre-Empire Strikes Back. Thanks to a few new characters being added the series feels fresh, and a new issue is out this week, but is it good?
Star Wars #17 (Marvel Comics)
Leia is in charge of keeping Aphra, a known helper of Darth Vader, in a prison which sits very close to a star. With the help of Sana, a woman who has a past with Han Solo, they’re coming under attack and they don’t know who the assailants are. We do though, and they’re bounty hunters sent by Darth Vader to kill Aphra lest she reveal any of his secrets. At the same time Luke and Han are hanging out and attempting to recoup 10,000 credits Han blew on a poker game.
Why does this book matter?
Jason Aaron has proven he can write dialogue in the voice of the characters, plot a mean story and introduce fun new elements. Meanwhile, Marvel has proven they can pick great artists to go along with these tight scripts and Leinil Francis Yu is an inspired choice given his ability to draw extremely detailed technology.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Jason Aaron has written Leia and Sana into quite a pickle, with assailants carving their way into the prison to take her out. Unfortunately for them Leia is a formidable fighter and it’s fun to see her do a little fighting, blasting and slinging of action-packed dialogue along with it. Aaron effectively shows Leia is cool under pressure and I’m sure fans will appreciate that.
The second storyline with Luke and Han continues to be more of a comical one, although the heat is on them by issue’s end. There is a major joke involving a certain type of alien that fans of the movies will simply lose their minds over. It also shows us a side of Luke that proves he’s pure and good natured at heart. It comes as a bit of a surprise but helps strengthen the character development.
Yu continues to show us he’s at the top of the class in the art department. From picture-perfect renditions of the actors and their characters’ likenesses to a Millennium Falcon that could fly right off the page, it all looks sharp as hell. There are a few full page layouts that show off a keen sense of energy and excitement too. Inker Gerry Alanguilan helps to make the action feel darker and more dangerous while giving every scene a sense that we’re in the middle of space and the characters lives are hanging by a thread.
It can’t be perfect can it?
The bad guys flip a switch to keep Leia busy, but not in a plot progressing kind of way. Instead it gives Yu something to draw and Leia a chance to show off her toughness (and kindness too) but feels like filler due to it not really mattering in the end. There appears to be a mystery afoot involving the bad guys threatening Leia’s life that could earn huge gasps from the audience, but the actions in this issue serve to prove they mean business but not enough to actually get Leia by the throat. One could argue this is very much an issue to get characters from point A to point B and aside from that doesn’t reveal or do much.
That’s pretty funny.
Is It Good?
The comic nature of Luke and Han’s story mixed with Leia and her attempting to manage a dangerous situation will remind you of the best of times in the Star Wars universe. This is good entertainment even if the plot progresses very little.