Star Wars #5 The Destiny Path: Part V
Having abandoned his mission to find his lost lightsaber and ultimately recovering his connection to the Force, Luke Skywalker turns his attention to a vision he received involving a strange cloaked woman. Using clues from the vision, he and Artoo set out to find out why the planet and the stranger are calling him there.
The newest issue of Star Wars is just as surprising and action packed as the series has been to date. However, it is nice to get a Luke only story for a change. Luke has had a rough few day since meeting up with Darth Vader on Bespin during the events of The Empire Strikes Back. It’s certainly great to see him getting back to being the regular carefree adventuring Luke again, but danger is always looming. Nothing hits that point on the nose more that the cover art. The R. B. Silva art shows Luke in a familiar setting, the X-Wing Red 5. On his face, he wears a look of determination, truly on his way to become a Jedi returning in a few years. Reflected in his cockpit canopy, is the unmistakable image of Vader, haunting Luke.
The issue itself starts out with a young spacer in a bar claiming the fame of Luke Skywalker, destroyer of the Death Star. His bragging does not go unnoticed as he is met face to face with Darth Vader who instantly sees him as a faker. Vader claims, “all Skwalkers die,” before making an example of him. It seems very possible that he might also be talking about a long dormant flicker of his past Skywalker self, ignited by recently meeting his son. Either way, it would seem the Dark Lord of the Sith has resolved himself to find Luke at all cost. Luke on the other hand, is busy with a mission of his own. He tracks down the person from his vision who is working the docks. She instantly bolts, starting off a good old fashion boat chase. Luke seems to be his typical fun-loving self, noting that sea travel and sand travel on Tatooine are very different. The sea gets the best of him though, and he proclaims his love of sand. That is something that would have made his father, notorious sand-hater, wince. Luke continues the chase into a good old fashion trap laden cave. When he catches up the her, she has trapped him. She reveals herself to be Verla, a survivor of Darth Vader’s Purge of the remaining Jedi and Force users. Fans of Charles Soule’s previous series will recognize the character from his Darth Vader comic that took place after Revenge of the Sith. This issue plays out like a Bond film, and in that same style Verla explains way too much while waiting for the trapped Jedi to expire. As with any good serialized story, the issue ends with a cliffhanger. Luke is seemingly dead. The preview cover of the next issue says otherwise.
This issue felt so very classic Star Wars for a number of reasons. Not only was it a Luke and Artoo adventure, which feels like the original Marvel Star Wars comics, but it involved a lot of Star Wars history. The Jedi Purge, the Inquisitors, and Order 66 are all mentioned. Luke references events in The Empire Strike Backs, and even shouts out the classic Huttese curse word “poodoo” at one point. Having a character from the previous Vader series reappear, although older now, is a nice touch that Star Wars likes to use all the time. This is done with Ahsoka, Boba Fett, even Kenobi himself to name only a few. All these little and big reference help weave a rich tapestry to sort of bind and unify the new expanded universe of all the comics, films, novels, games, and shows together. This issue was a perfect example of how to do this right.
Soule continues to bring his action-packed and clever storytelling to this fresh rebranding of the Star Wars series. Only five issues in and it is already one of the most compelling entries from the entire series. Having heavy ties to events from the film has never been new to the series, however this one taking place over the week after The Empire Strikes back takes that concept to an almost intimate level, so much so that it doesn't seem like an in-between series, but a continuation of that film.
Star Wars #5: Skywalkers Die
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Art - 7/107/10
- Color - 7/107/10
- Cover Art - 9/109/10
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