Published: July 24, 2019
Rating: Rated T
Writer: Greg Pak
Penciler: Phil Noto
Cover Artist: Phil Noto
TRICKS AND TRAPS! The REBELS AND ROGUES epic continues as our heroes deploy their plans to trick their Imperial pursuers… and everything falls apart! CHEWIE and THREEPIO face moral quandaries — and mortal danger — when they learn the uninhabited planet they’re supposed to destroy isn’t quite so uninhabited. Will the FORCE be with LUKE in a bar fight? And who is DAR CHAMPION… and what does he have to do with Leia’s past?
The first part of ‘Rebels and Rogues’ was very repetitive of previous story arcs but made a promising start. I was eager (and perhaps a little sceptical) about what this next issue would bring. Would it be more of the same or something new and different?
There are three story arcs that (at the moment) are all separate from one another. The first that is continued is the Han/Leia arc. The two characters, as I would expect, play off each other very well. With a past flame of Leia’s we really get to see Han and his jealous side. Han is expecting Leia to not actually want him, and so he does his best to keep pushing her further and further into the arms of her ex. This works beautifully, particularly with the story set so close to The Empire Strikes Back. By the time we get to Empire, Han is very cocky with Leia, yet here, he is unsure of how she actually feels about him. It makes him unbalanced and that can really be seen.
The second arc is Luke’s and I said last issue that it is the most compelling part of the story arc. The desert setting, just Luke and his trusty droid, this is the kind of Star Wars from the seventies. Last week, the time dedicated to this was far too short and I’d argue the same again this week. I’ll be perfectly honest; I’d happily read a whole six-part series just about what Luke is doing here. We get to see more of the planet Sergia, which is just like Tatooine. The town, the bar, it all has that feel. Added to which, we now have this mysterious woman who may or may not be a force user, just like a certain strange, old hermit. And I suppose this is why this part of the story is working so well for me. Pak is repeating the some of the main story points of A New Hope; I love it! I’m on the edge of my seat reading this part and I just want more. I like that I don’t feel encumbered by other parts of the galaxy in terms of TV shows, books, games. It comes back to the bare bones of Star Wars: Luke on a journey, discovering the force (and maybe helping some people along the way).
The final part is Chewbacca and C-3PO and this is my least favourite of the three. One part that I did find really interesting and I hope gets expanded, is why 3PO is so determined to save these rock creatures. He sees them just like himself. He is made up of nothing more than parts, yet he has a personality and is for all intense and purposes, a living being. However, most of the galaxy do not see him, or other droids, like this. They are machines designed to complete a task. These creatures are just the same, they aren’t living in the traditional sense and yet are alive. 3PO wants to save them when most wouldn’t, because they are like him. It’s an interesting contrast and one that I think works very well.
I said last issue, how much I enjoyed Noto’s artwork and that enjoyment continues this week. What really struck me was the emotions Noto was able to convey with the characters, particularly Leia. The facial expressions were perfect and really helped to envelope me in the story. The style seems very sketch like, but it seemed to flow just the same.
Last issue I was sceptical, this time, I’m feeling rather relieved. There is a lot here, particularly when there are three storylines. Not all three are to my liking but I do feel that there is something here for everyone, which isn’t a bad compromise. Whether it’s the tension between Han and Leia, the selfless acts of Chewie and 3PO or the classic feel of Luke and R2, there is something that should appeal to all. For my money, it’s without doubt the Luke/R2 line, that A New Hope feel is hard to beat, and the repetition of the setting is most welcome. The other two lines have a lot of potential and I’m a bit more hopeful that Pak will take us on a journey worth going on…
Star Wars is an ongoing series available from Marvel. This issue is available via the Marvel App and all good comic book stores. This issue retails at $3.99.