Comic Review: Age of Republic – General Grievous #1

Published: March 13, 2019
Writer: Jody Houser
Penciler: Luke Ross
Cover Artist: Paolo Rivera

The synopsis;

THE FEARSOME SEPARATIST GENERAL STRIKES! In his hunt to kill Jedi, GRIEVOUS stumbles across a power greater than he imagined. What secrets will the killer cyborg find inside a lost Jedi temple? Can Grievous strike a blow against the very FORCE itself?

The story;

“Burn”

On the planet Ledeve, a Jedi Knight stands to face with an ominous enemy allowing her Padawan to flee and escape in their ship. General Grievous springs into action, but the Jedi has no answer to him and is easily vanquished. He collects the fallen Jedi’s lightsaber and heads off into the forest.

Her Padawan arrives at their ship with escape in his sight, only to find Grievous stood on the hull. He hopes that the Padawan will put up more of a fight than his master. On the attack once again the Padawan has no answer to the attack and suffers the same fate as his master. Again, Grievous retrieves another lightsaber as his prize, but also a datapad. He toggles it on and it reveals a castle like building and a map of its location. So this is what the Jedi were looking for, he makes his way to find it.

He reaches his destination and decides to climb the wall and enter the castle. It is not a castle, but seems to be some sort of Jedi Temple, the hallway is lined with statues of Jedi. He ignites his lightsaber’s and cuts them all down, destroying each and every one, then proceeds further in the temple.

Traps and trials lie in wait for the unsuspecting General. Floors that fall away, spiked chasms, but he is too nimble due to his mechanical upgrades to be defeated, he navigates them with ease and reaches his goal.

At the top of the spire is a room with wall that looks like a waterfall with a strange glow outlined from behind it. He reaches it out, but can feel nothing, so he immerses himself into it.

A voice starts speaking to him asking what he wants, but he needs nothing but the destruction of the Jedi. Slowly, his extra limbs detach from his body, the voice telling him he has destroyed himself with his mechanical upgrades. Grievous is now revealed in his flesh form, but he has improved himself and made himself more powerful. The voice continues to warn him of his errors and that he does not comprehend what he seeks to destroy and that he is small like his understanding.

Grievous somehow removes himself from the waterfall and immediately goes on the attack, slashing at it with all his might, but this has no effect.

He stands on a rocky outcrop, the Jedi Temple in the distance and hails his ship that orbits planet. He checks they have the co-ordinates and orders them to open fire. In orbit, his battle droids turn the turbo lasers toward their target and unleash their power. The Temple is destroyed as Grievous watches on, the voice in the temple talked of power, but now it burns easily.

The review;

For the last issue of the series we have 5 covers to choose from. The direct edition covers from Paolo Rivera have been brilliant and this one does not disappoint again. It’s a series of covers that have been of the highest order and consistent.

Then we have the standard Lucasfilm movie still and the final piece to the puzzle from Mike McKone and Guru-eFX. Seeing an image of all 9 covers together in this series does really give a nice piece of art and if any of you have collected all 9, I would advise getting them framed together as it will look stunning hung on a wall. I really like the concept art cover from Warren Fu, an illustration that I am not familiar with and on closer inspection, the detail is quite remarkable.

But the stand out has to be the Galactic Moments Variant (8/36) by Pepe Laraz and Guru-eFX. It catches Grievous at his most ominous and the cover just really stands out. One of the best covers we have seen from the multitude of variants for the series.

On my first read through, I didn’t know what to make of this issue, but I usually read an issue 3 or 4 times before I even start to look at reviewing it. This issue has actually grown on me with each reading. While I don’t think it’s quite as strong as some of the other stories, I like where it goes.

The ease in which Grievous cuts down the Jedi in the early part, just shows how formidable an opponent he is, but his experience in the temple, shows the weakness that Obi-Wan will eventually exploit. There’s a pride or ego waiting to take a fall is probably the best way I can describe it.

I really like the adaptability that is demonstrated by his path through the Indiana Jones style path to the core of the temple. The crouching and scuttling along on all limbs and then using his built in enhancements to help defeat the challenges. This is all achieved through some fantastic artwork. As usual, Luke Ross gives us some more delicious artwork that has been painstakingly coloured to perfection by Java Targtaglia. The reveal of Grievous on page 3 is just simply stunning.

This story shows the arrogance and the flaws of Grievous and his beliefs in ‘upgrading’ his flesh and bone to become a mechanical and maniacal powerhouse. Brute force and ignorance cannot be the thing that conquers all every time.

The overview articles from Brian Young and Bria La Vorgna have been a nice addition to the series and Brian Young is the writer this time out. While these may recap things I already know, there are many readers that won’t, so it is nice that they get a little ‘introduction’ to the character.

Jody Houser has given us a few gems in this series and has not done her reputation as a Star Wars writer any harm whatsoever. While the series has been in a little inconsistent on story quality at times, there are signs there to me that the ‘TIE Fighter‘ series due next month will be well worth a read with Houser at the helm. But for now, this baton is being handed over to Greg Pak for the ‘Age of Rebellion‘ series

Thank you to all the members of the creative team that have brought us this series.

Availability;

This is the ninth and final issue of the Age of Republic series and was released on 13th March 2019. This issue retails at $3.99 and is available via the Marvel App and all good comic book stores.