Comic Review: Star Wars Adventures #22

Published: June 5, 2019
Cover Artist: Elsa Charretier

A Matter of Perception
Writer: Pierrick Colinet and Elsa Charretier
Artist: Elsa Charretier

Tales From Wild Space: “A Tauntaun Tail”
Writer: Jon Waterhouse
Artist: Tony Fleecs

The synopsis;

After losing the man she loves to a bounty hunter, Princess Leia embarks on a dangerous mission with R2-D2 and C-3PO in this exciting tale set just after The Empire Strikes Back!

The review;

It seems to have been far too long since Adventures came out. It’s the one comic I know I can depend on each month to make me smile and help me relax. This month sees the return of my favourite writing duo; Pierrick Colinet and Elsa Charretier. This pair produce some of the very best Star Wars and I’ve been waiting….and waiting….and waiting to see their next tale set in a galaxy far, far away. We also have Jon Waterhouse with a tauntaun adventure…

The first story, ‘A Matter of Perception’, follows Leia, C-3PO and R2-D2 as they try to confirm reports of Imperial activity on the planet Nothoiin. Right from the outset, the thing that really got me were the droids. I’ve said it before, but at the moment there doesn’t seem to be much love for the original droids. Artoo and Threepio were our guides in the Original Trilogy and are essential to Star Wars. Here, they are exactly how they should be, imbedded in the story. Colinet and Charretier always write the two perfectly. It is very easy with Threepio to write him as the silly one from the prequel trilogy, but the duo always write him in his original portrayal. It’s how I want to see him. With that comes the humour. Because Threepio is written as he is, the humour then follows suit. It’s not cringe humour, but the sort of humour we get in the Original Trilogy.  It’s not an easy thing to do, yet Colinet and Charretier seem to do it with ease. Artoo still wants to be the hero and the interaction with him and Threepio works. Although this is Leia’s story, the droids for me stole the show. They are the backbone of Star Wars. If they are written well, everything else fits into place.

Leia is true to character in this tale and its wonderful seeing her taking on the enemy with her own skill. This is the Leia from A New Hope who doesn’t take fools lightly. Although the characters are on the Falcon for some of the story, we never get to see Han and Chewie. I think this was the right decision to make as I think they would have overshadowed the rest of the characters. (And I know the synopsis says this is set after Empire but Threepio says Captain Solo will be back soon!)

The artwork by Charretier is gorgeous. The style, the colours, it all suits this galaxy perfectly. There is plenty of action and the art guides you through it seamlessly. Leia is particularly drawn well, from her Endor clothes, to her face, let alone guiding her through her martial arts.

The final thing about this tale that I enjoyed was the message. Adventures is aimed at a younger audience and I think in today’s world, the message in this tale is particularly important. Not only that, but it’s a very Star Wars message and something that is touched upon several times in the movies. I like that it’s reiterated here in a new, different way.

The second story, ‘A Tauntaun Tail’, really took me by surprise. As with a lot of the Wild Space stories in Adventures, there is a lot of humour and it’s meant as a morality tale. What I wasn’t expecting was the emotional response in such a short few panels. You very quickly care for this Tauntaun and I can only equate this to the combined writing of Waterhouse and art of Tony Fleecs. Although not expected, it was very welcome. And the good writing and art continues through this entire tale.

Waterhouse starts the story on Hoth and it’s a great start. But again, the artwork of Fleecs helps this start flow so beautifully. It happens again and again. The two seem to complement each other brilliantly at every point in the story. What could have been taken as some goof ball story about a tauntaun, actually comes across as humorous but very emotional tale.

Star Wars Adventures never seems to disappoint. This month seems to be the issue of duos. Colinet and Charretier bring us a great tale with Leia and the droids, showing us just how great the two droids are. We then have Waterhouse and Fleecs who bring us an emotional tale about a tauntaun who is different. What both do is provide very important messages for the children of today. Now I’m not saying Adventures can’t be enjoyed by all, it most certainly can (and should) be, but the main target audience is for younger readers. Even though these stories are set in a galaxy far, far away, they are able to impart important morals that children are having to deal with. It’s easy to say that a comic is for children, but the depth that Adventures is able to go to is something special. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it now, if you’re not reading Adventures, you’re missing out on some of the very best Star Wars on offer…

Availability:

Star Wars Adventures is an ongoing series available from IDW Publishing. This issue is available from all good comic book stores in the USA and from Forbidden Planet in the UK. This issue retails at $3.99.