Note: This blog entry contains SPOILERS to “Star Wars: In the Shadow of Yavin” #2
The second issue to the bestselling title, “Star Wars,” is full of secret missions and familiar faces – along with some surprises.
When Entertainment Weekly published a sneak peak at this issue last month, it turns out that was the opening for this month’s story. Han Solo and Chewbacca are drifting in the Corsair Outback, on a rendezvous mission assigned by Mon Monthma.
Even though they sit in deep space, among space debris, the smuggler and his companion are discovered by Slave I. This story transpires before Empire Strikes Back, so Boba Fett is hunting Solo due to the bounty placed on his head by Jabba the Hutt.
Solo is forced to make a space jump after Slave I opens fire on his ship. They end up making seven jumps before they’re clear of the bounty hunter. This was disappointing – the issue was marketed as showing the appearance of Boba Fett – but we never actually see the Mandalorian. In fact, the three page preview is the entirety of Fett’s appearance in the issue.
This was a chance for Dark Horse to tear down common tropes comic books have executed with the relationship between Boba Fett and Han Solo. Instead, they kept to the formula of Han Solo being tracked down by Fett, he makes a run for it and escapes. Let’s hope this story arc doesn’t consist of repeated “near encounters” between the adversaries.
I’ve said this in an earlier blog entry – let Solo be captured by Boba Fett, but manage to escape. We need to see why the presence of Boba Fett strikes the fear Solo experiences in the films, that don’t come up with other encounters with bounty hunters, like Greedo.
The issue also sets up two more plot points. In many ways this issue sets up what we should anticipate for the rest of the story arc. Monthma gives Leia a secret assignment, as does the Emperor to Darth Vader. These secret assignments introduce two characters to keep an eye on.
Leia puts together a team of X-Wing pilots to conduct a secret mission to locate a base for the Rebels. This assignment must be done in secret, because Monthma suspects a spy in their ranks.
Among the pilots is Rus Kal from Durkteel. Kal is part of a subspecies of Transdoshan – the race of Bossk. I’m engaged by this member of the team. I don’t know too much about this species, but I have to wonder how close their characteristics are from their cousins, Transdoshans.
Am I overanalyzing things, or is this foreshadowing that we may see Bossk in the near future pop up?
The second character of interest is Colonel Bircher, who has been put in charge of Darth Vader’s crew and Star Destroyer. While Vader is on his secret mission, Bircher is leading the charge of hunting down the Rebel Alliance.
I enjoyed this issue and the artwork is some of the best that’s come out of Dark Horse, besides the work being down in “Agent of the Empire.” I need to emphasize my disappointment though, we were teased with Boba Fett and Darth Vader in the official synopsis of the issue, but Boba Fett is only in a couple panels and Vader is only mentioned by name.
The first “Star Wars Insider” of 2013 presents a behind the scenes look at the audio play, “Smuggler’s Gambit,” which took fans by storm at Celebration VI this past August.
The piece includes concept art from Paul Bateman, putting a face to the characters of Ro Kurotora and Ryder Thorne. As previously reported on The Boba Bounty, the performance included a minor role of Boba Fett, voiced by The Clone War’s very own, Daniel Logan.
Director Kyle Newman shares his thoughts about the production, walking us through the stages of development and reminiscing about the radio plays he listened to as a youngster. It’s reinforced “Smuggler’s Gambit” is a work of fan fiction, but it showcased the power of fandom and what we can create together.
If you haven’t had a chance to plug into the audio play, visit www.StarWars.com/SmugglersGambit for the full audio and some behind the scenes footage.
Issue #139 also highlights the trade paperback release of “Star Wars Blood Ties: Boba Fett is Dead.” The second volume of comics further delves into the genealogical consequences of the Fett family.
Dark Horse writer Tom Taylor created a stellar story of Boba Fett’s fate at the hands of a vengeful figure from his past – or so it is reported through the galaxy. The story expands on the relationship between Boba Fett’s half-brother, Connor Freeman, and Boba’s back story as a Protector.
Quite honestly, the tale is too riveting to go into further plot points, but I highly recommend picking up the book, which was released Jan. 23.
Also, look forward to Issue #140, which teases news on the development of Episode VII. Let’s hope we hear mention of our favorite bounty hunter.