Star Wars #17



StarWars17VCSomewhat annoyingly beginning this edition’s narrative after Princess Leia and smuggler Sana Starros have already apparently dealt with “a security breach” at Sunspot Prison, Jason Aaron’s script for Issue Seventeen of “Star Wars” certainly lived up to the Alabama-born author’s “idea of doing a Star Wars prison story, which is something very different than what we’ve done so far.” In fact, this second instalment to “Rebel Jail” probably wrong-footed its 107,058 readers on several occasions as the plot’s central antagonist turns out to be a murderous Rebel sympathiser of sorts, and the “poor, misguided princess” is driven to re-capture a number of released inmates alive rather than simply kill them as “the [new] man in charge” wishes.

Such pleasing prose really does help ramp up the intrigue as to the identity of this book’s heavily armoured mysterious mercenary, as well as add an interesting spin to Organa’s lethal predicament by forcing the former member of the Imperial Senate to punch her way out of trouble, rather than just blast her opponents as her colleague recommends; “No one would blame you if you pulled the trigger. It’d certainly be a better death than the one he was about to give you.”

Of course, despite all its dynamic, pulse-pounding panels and captivating moral dilemmas, it is difficult to believe that the sequence’s “adventure heroine” is realistically physically strong enough to overpower the likes of Imperial Special Force’s agent Kolar Ludd, a Gamorrean, a Zabrak, and at least two other highly dangerous prisoners without resorting to killing at least one or two of them. Yet such a willing suspension of disbelief is entirely necessary, particularly if any perusing bibliophile was ever going to imagine this comic’s subsequent cliff-hanger which disconcertingly sees “lawfulness” Leia hand Doctor Aphra a laser rifle and then seemingly turn her back upon Darth Vader’s “side-kick”.

Sadly, a lot of the impact to this third best-selling book of March 2016 is arguably also lost as a result of Leinil Francis Yu’s somewhat inconsistent pencilling. It’s clear from Aaron’s comments at the time of this twenty-page periodical’s publication that the writer was “a huge fan of his stuff” and felt the Filipino was “a great choice for this arc.” But a number of the artist’s “dynamic pseudo-realism” drawn panels, such as when Luke and Han try to avoid a squadron of “bucket-heads” whilst “transporting illegal livestock”, debatably don’t look quite right.

This article is the opinion of the author and does not represent the views of the site owner.


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For the past forty or so years I have been collecting American comics… To begin with they were predominantly black and white British reprints of “Marvel Comics Group” titles such as “Spider-Man Comics Weekly”, “The Mighty World of Marvel” and “Star Wars Weekly”; all six to ten pence editions I could store away under my bed in a large cardboard box. As a result though I was introduced to the teenage angst of Peter Parker, the discovery of a frozen Captain America by Earth's Mightiest Heroes, witnessed the dreadful rage of Doctor Bruce Banner, and even travelled to a galaxy far far away... Later I would be able to afford actual America colour comic books and supplemented my collection of “Marvel” titles such as “Conan the Barbarian”, “Howard the Duck” and “Captain America” with some “DC Comics” issues of “Batman”, “Green Lantern” and “Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew”. There would even be time for Independent publications such as “Wildcats”, “Spawn” and “The Authority”. These days however I must admit to yearning back to the simpler times of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, back to when both artwork and storylines were straightforward, easy to follow and super-heroes were just starting out on their adventures. A time when no-one had yet to be resurrected from the dead for the fourth time. I've written over seven hundred comic book reviews on my blog over the past few years, with them usually following my latest purchases, all wrapped up in a large brown paper bag, as well as occasional ‘flashbacks’ to some of the classic "Golden Age" issues I already own…

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