Doctor Aphra #35: Mad Methods
After a quick adventure with soon to be Jedi Knight, Luke Skywalker, Doctor Aphra returns to her life of looting tombs for profit. Unfortunately the only people hiring currently is the infamous Tagge family.
This chapter marks a return to normalcy for Doctor Aphra. After a long time not even in control of her own body and then whisked away into adventures with Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker seemingly at the same time, it is business as usual for the doctor. In this issue Aphra goes back to doing what she does best, she uses her fame and reputation to pay the bills by renting her skills off to anyone willing to pay obscene amounts of credits. This was always her original goal. She is even hired by her most recent boss, Domina Tagge, after accepting additional hazard pay that is. This mission also has her team up with Just Lucky, a character mostly present in one shape or another since the beginning of this entire series. This issue feels like a complete series reset.
This issue, in fact, feels nothing like a complete series reset. Aphra is up to old tricks and working with past cohorts, but it is painfully clear that Aphra has changed. This chapter revolves around Aphra trying to be the same person she has always been; cold, dismissive, cruel, and impulsive. However those traits seem alien on her after the past year of events. The reader will see it and Aphra will undoubably address it herself at some point, but first she must do as she always does and deny stone cold facts. In reality, she was hijacked by and entity and past lovers, family, and colleagues came to rescue her. These were all people she in some way betrayed and she carries a ton of guilt because of it. What it resulted in was a disconnection from Sana Starros, he very closest friend, partner, and former lover. This absence is felt not only through some on the nose references to this, but the very fact that she is doing things like uncharacteristically shirking off a mission to go to a club speaks volumes. She is trying to forget Sana, and it is not working. Furthermore, she is trying to get Just Lucky to party with her. As it has been said already, denial is the name of Aphra’s current game. She will need to change how she plays.
The art and color barely play into the strength of this issue. They both rightfully take a backseat to the subtle emotional backstory weaved by the narrative. In this way, color and art play their part perfectly. The actual things being depicted in panels are more important than their brightness or clarity. The writing drives that almost completely, with the art merely backing it up. There are things depicted in panels that would be completely missing if a reader were to only read the dialogue. These happenings in the background unspoken that tell a deeper story. This issue is so deep that it seems almost wasted wrapped up in the larger “Dark Droids” multi-series event. This is an excellent departure from this series though. When it went through the “War of the Bounty Hunters” series, Aphra issues seemed to weaken to fit into it. This issue feels more organic and it is clear the crew working on this series have learned from the past.
In an effort to regain her game, Doctor Aphra seems to have lost a bit of her mojo. With others also seeking her same goal, she can’t afford to let that happen.
Doctor Aphra #35: More Beneath the Surface
- Writing - 8/108/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Art - 6/106/10
- Color - 6/106/10
- Cover Art - 7/107/10
User Review( votes)