There’s a new team controlling Doctor Aphra’s galaxy: writer Simon Spurrier and artist Kev Walker. Aphra’s in trouble again (shock!) and she’s locked up in the most unique jail I’ve ever seen. It’s safe to say other inmates are the least of her worries.
BROKEN, INSIDE BEGINS NOW! Aphra is behind bars. Again. But this time, she finds herself in Imperial custody, strapped to an explosive transmitter synced to a single hub-droid. Take one step too far? KABLOOEY! Normally, this wouldn’t be an issue to sit still for Aphra – but what happens when her Imperial captors send her hub-droid to the middle of a war zone? And, uh, what’s this rumor about the prison being haunted?
What’s the skinny?
Surprise, surprise, Doctor Aphra is in trouble again (no one is surprised by this). Our favorite hacker, archeologist, scientist and troublemaker has landed herself in Imperial custody. I’m not sure what the exact reason is for her incarceration; I suppose it doesn’t really matter given the laundry list of reasons the Imperials have to choose from.
This isn’t your typical jail, though — frankly, it’s not like any jail I’ve ever seen before and I doubt you have either. Remember when you were a kid and your siblings smashed your Star Wars LEGOs or you lost vital components, so you ended up building a monstrosity of different LEGO pieces into the best damn starship you could manage? Yeah well whether you did that or not, that’s what this jail looks like. It’s huge, it’s compiled of dozens of different ships and it’s maybe haunted?
Unfortunately ghosts and being in jail aren’t Aphra’s only problems. The jailers of her prison have an explosive device attached to her neck and they’re forcing prisoners into near suicidal assaults on rebel ships. Oh and people are knocking her cool electronic tattoos. I know, I know, NOT cool.
What’s the catch?
Great start for Spurrier and Walker. My only concern being a mild one: the number of stories happening at once. There are a fair number of plots — we’ve got Aphra zipping through hyperspace in space prison, she’s being hunted by Triple-Zero, there’s a mysterious Force-using ghost (I think it’s a ghost) and Sana Starros is about to join the party. That’s a lot of balls in the air for any comic; I hope this team manages to keep them all straight.
Is it good?
Seeing a Star Destroyer pull a gigantic space jail, which is a hodgepodge of different ships held together with an attractor node (space glue), on strings, is one of the more unique pieces of art that I’ve seen from a Star Wars comic. So yeah, it’s safe to say Kev Walker is off to a good start.
Other little tidbits I enjoyed were the symbols and insignias present on the uniforms of the rebel soldiers’ uniforms. They aren’t anything I can recognize, so I guess I’m going to have to interview Walker and demand some answers. Oh and minor spoiler alert, there’s a scene in which a statue of what appears to be Jar Jar Binks is laying in a smoldering ruin with its head removed. I like this Walker guy and I’m confident you will too.
Doctor Aphra has a lot of qualities that make her a great character. Not only did she work for Darth Vader and live to tell about it, but she’s also a galaxy trotting archeologist who’s smart, resourceful and has a great sense of humor. Aphra’s sense of humor is probably my favorite part about her. I love sarcasm and Spurrier nails Aphra’s use of extreme sincerity that it comes off as blatantly sarcastic. You’ll also find her famous quick wit and love of rhetorical questions in rich supply.
I love me some dark humor and apparently so does Simon Spurrier. Oh what’s this? You can’t keep up with your combat nanny droid? Too bad, we’re blowing your head off. It’s kind of like shocking your dog when they bark too loud or wander out of your yard. Except instead of a small electric shock, your head blows up. It’s just now that I’ve realized Simon and I may be sick, sick individuals.
Triple-Zero is one of my favorite new characters to join the Star Wars universe and while I haven’t had a ton of exposure to Sana Starros, the fact that she supposedly conned Han Solo into marriage is enough for me to like her. In addition to these two fan favorites, we may just have a new creep Force using ghost on our hands. You’ll have to read the comic to decide for yourself. Yup, this is all happening in addition to Aphra escaping jail. It seems like a lot and frankly it kind of is, but I’m confident Walker and Spurrier are up to the task.
Whether you’re new to Doctor Aphra or an old hand, this is a comic you’ll want to get your hands on. There are huge expectations from Star Wars fans and with those expectations comes pressure for the creators out there who’re fortunate enough to work within the Star Wars franchise. Simon Spurrier and Kev Walker are honestly making it look easy. Keep it up fellas, I’m sold.