Star Wars issue #5
Writer: Jason Aaron
Art: John Cassaday
Colorist: Laura Martin
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
Issue #5 of STAR WARS hit the stands a few weeks ago and while my lethargic self did go buy it shortly after it hit the comic shop I’ve been too busy screaming at my internal demons aka motivation. To get the review completed. But enough about me. It’s time to return to the galaxy far, far, away!
This issue we start with Luke Skywalker young jedi in training and bullseye shooter o thermal exhaust ports. He’s seen wandering the Judland wastes with R2D2 after parking his X-wing on Tatooine. First impressions are good, Cassaday gets to draw Luke with his cloak on ala Return of the Jedi. Giving a new look to our young sandy haired hero from previous issues. Also Cassaday decides to stylize Luke in the scene something that’s been lacking in the previous issues where I’m sure it was told to keep the main cast looking as close to the photography from the original trilogy as he could. It was OK for the previous issues, but we get to see “his” version of Luke, and while not exactly looking like a young Mark Hamill as in previous issues… I prefer it.
What happens in the next few pages is something that doesn’t really conform to wha I’ve read for years regarding another legendary character albeit this character Boba Fett only had a handful of scenes and lines in the original trilogy. We see Boba Fett taking on a rowdy bunch of Rodians in what looks like Mos Eisley after dark. Possibly the same bunch that the previous issues bounty hunter shot different body parts with a terribly over exaggerated blaster.
We then see Fett flying away from a trail of slaughtered jawas,… again with the slaughtering of jawas, c’mon guys. Then finally we see Fett’s silhouette standing over what appears to be a Tatooine moisture farmer as the suns set for the day. It’s rough stuff and I’ve come to expect that from Fett over the years even though new-canon people trumping new-canon as the best canon will tell me I shouldn’t expect to be the cool calculating guy in the comics like he was in previous comics… …or the movies new canon lovers?
Well they were right. To me the next scene was pretty out of character for Boba Fett, hell even for Jango. He stands in the middle of Chalmun’s cantina with most of the original cantina aliens and even Wuher the plus sized bartender paying him attention as he makes a floor wide announcement about what he wants and who else has anything to say. …/facepalm. OK we know Fett’s working for Vader and we know he wants the person who joined Ben Kenobi from meeting the boy in issue#2.
So here we have Fett standing off against the Mos Eisley cantina aliens in what was once a bounty hunter that was cool and calculating reduced to being an imperial’s mafia tough guy shaking down the local uglies for information. If Vader wanted this little side-op of Fett’s kept quiet he’ll be glad to see the bounty hunter he hired sure doesn’t seem to care who finds out someone’s looking for the Rebel pilot. Anyways enough rambling, later in the scene a big six armed guy decides he doesn’t like Fett’s attitude (nor I for character reasons) and figures to give the Mandolorian armor wearing hunter a good thrashing.
Now then, we don’t get to see what Fett does with all his cool gear. We just see him holding down this six armed by by the throat yelling at the other patrons of the cantina that he tore on of the arms off and broke two others and they need to tell him the boy’s name. They don’t of course and Fett breaks another demanding to know. …. OK this is starting to get a bit upsetting because I’m sure Jason Aaron has seen Episode 4 A New Hope. Why in the hell would any of the cantina patrons who watched Ben Kenobi slice of Ponda Boba’s arm and Han Solo fry Greedo to casually go back to their drinks give two rips about some big lug trying to square off with Fett? Was Fett slaughtering jawas not enough action in this issue so he decided to have him fight a guy in the cantina? Sure I can buy that. Fett acting like he’s from Good Fellas wanting information from the crowd… eh.. that’s iffy. The crowd of scum/pirates/smugglers/assassins/ giving a damn about some other guy tangled up with Fett and worse Fett thinking they would…. c’mon guys. Thank fully Laura Martin’s colors are well done in the cantina to make it digestible. I loved the blue glow on the aliens sitting with their drinks from the opening scene when Fett makes his out of character announcement. Well scene writing aside I chalked it up to comic pulp and watched some human run from the cantina only to be captured by Fett.
This issue showed the rebel alliance fleet looking for a new base to use for operations now that Yavin is?…. Yavin is?…. Yavin is?…. still there? Under imperial blockade? Bombarded by the imperial star fleet to ash? Eh well it’s not like we’re focusing on it. Anywho we get our favorite smuggler and princess acting like they came straight out of a trash compactor /slapsknee. Han tells Leia the rebel alliance won’t give him the parts to repair the Falcon and Leia tells Han she wants him to go on a mission with her and she’ll see if she can get the parts for him. Cassaday’s work here is awesome he stylizes Hand and Leia as he did Luke earlier in the issue. In a few panels while only keeping the photographic realism in a few places. It works well I must say. They’re going to take a Lambda class shuttle named dubiously Invictus, to use as cover for their mission to hopefully keep a low profile.
We return to Fett torturing the small guy for information on the guy Ben Kenobi brought with him to the Death star, again I don’t assume Vader knows it’s the same kid who blew up the Deathstar since it’s not quite clear. Anyways once the small guy gives up Luke Skywalker as the guy who was hanging around with Ben Kenobi Fett casually shoots the guy and walks out amid a smoke filled cantina into the cool colors of the night nicely colored by Laura Martin. Why Fett does this when just a few minutes earlier he was trying to torture one of the same patrons to get information from others because he assumed they had each others back is slightly beyond me. Maybe in the few minutes after fighting the six armed guy Fett had a realization that the patrons of the cantina just don’t care.
We see Luke again making his way with R2 into the judland wastes to find Ben Kenobi’s hut. To only find it overrun with sandpeople. He scares them off easily enough so he can rummage and plunder Kenobi’s hut for himself. Later in the book it shows the hut trashed and in pretty rough shape though there was never much in it to begin with so Luke seems to think everything was still there just tossed around. More happens but we’ll come back to that later.
So now Leia and Han are on a scouting mission to some of the unknown regions that are unsettled to look for a new planet to claim as a rebel base. At first I was getting annoyed with the obvious cliché of the scruffy nerfherder pirate and the gungho princess. But fortunately it doesn’t get much further then Han working Leia’s nerves about why he had to come and why it’s a lot of effort to get him alone with her… Macho? Yes. Sexist? Probably. Awesome… most def. The conversation quickly turns to smuggling and how Han won the Falcon from some other scoundrel. He almost says the other scoundrels name before Leia cuts him off.
Eventually a pair of Ties show up hailing the pair of rebel leaders thinking they were also friendly law abiding imperials who may have lost their way and stumbled by accident near a hidden imperial base. At first Leia tells Han to play it cool they got codes for clearance but Han thinks it’s taking too long and pulls a Top-Gun move in the shuttle to the tie’s surprise. Seeing them as obviously non-friendlies or imposters the ties open up on them. Han takes the shuttle near a planet that Leia says isn’t even in the computer log and with what seems to be covered in electrical storms. The pair of Ties bug out upon entering the storms and Leia is giving Han the business for pulling this stunt that will probably get them both killed and that he’s the worst smuggler ever and he retorts with his “Lady… You aren’t much of a princess.”. Classic and all well drawn I must say. As the pair dive deeper into the storm a prob-bot-satelite-thingy catches their position and then another ship shows up with the bounty hunter from issue#4 who had the smart-targetting-voice-activated-BS whatever that shot the rowdy rodians. “The Monsua Nebula. I knew it” he claims as apparently he knows this planet sized/looking nebula Hand and Leia escaped into. Then he says something that I can only assume is fanboish … “I’ve got you now, you sorry son of a bantha.” ….sighs. Ok the I’ve got you now as homage to Vader from A New Hope, is fine but sorry son of a bantha…. why, why, tatooine again! AGAIN. I hated the fact people called the drink Jawa juice in Episode 2, even though some will say it’s a call to javajuice. No stop… for the love of… HOTH… say it with me people.. “Ive got you now, you sorry son of a Tauntaun.” Hell if we actually want to be exploratory in our love of the galaxy far far away lets MAKE UP A SPECIES to use in that vernacular. “You sorry son of a — vespidoc–” what’s a vespidoc you say? Then we’d have another new item to enter into the database for a species and maybe a planet to make in the galaxy. Either way pigeon holing the galaxy with phrases like that make me sad… thankfully the art made me happy. Then I started to assume who this mysterious bounty hunter with all this current Earth technology is…and I’m starting to get the feels again.
As the issue ends we return to Luke at Ben’s place, remember I said we’d come back there this issue. Luke finds the box from issue #3 that has “For-Luke” on it. Now… as I said then
why would Ben have not shown this to Luke during the hours he and Ben spent in his home talking about the hidden message in R2 or reminiscing about his father in the Clone Wars? Eh too much plot there to be reckoned with. So just as Luke goes to open the container a grenade is tossed into Ben’s place. The last page shows look saying he’s been blinded with Fett standing in the doorway. Seems Luke and Fett working together in the Holiday Special isn’t going to make the cannon cut today boys! Nearly non-stop action this issue to make up for the limited action last issue maybe? Not sure, not complaining either. Well not too much. Will be good to see what happens next issue!