In Review: Star Wars #47

Some fun moments, though a few cannot be seen.

The covers: Another threesome to track down if the device your secretly planted remains functioning. The Regular cover is by David Marquez & Matthew Wilson. I had thought that the monster shown on the final page of the previous issue was the Opee Sea Killer, but reading this issue has shown my assumption to be incorrect. Though the creature has a similar face its body is elongated like a Colo Claw Fish. Whatever this beast is, it’s in hot pursuit of Han Solo who’s trying to evade its maw in a small underwater vessel. This is okay, but the colors, chosen to mimic the dark deep waters, make this illustration too subdued. This foreshadows an issue with the interior visuals. The Action Figure Variant cover is by John Tyler Christopher. One of my favorite aliens from the Star Wars saga are the Weequay from Return of the Jedi. Their faces makes them look constantly annoyed and I love that. Christopher has done a great job in recreating the classic Kenner figure and the large image of the character looks amazing. I need this cover. The final cover is the Galactic Icons Variant by Rod Reis featuring Qi’ra, played by Emilia Clarke in the upcoming Solo movie. This is another fantastic bust shot by Reis with the character looking incredible. Behind the scoundrel is an outline of the Millennium Falcon. This is one I’ve got to track down. Overall grade: Regular B, Action Figure Variant A+, and Galactic Icons Variant A+

The story: Now that Tan Hubi, the Moff of the Calamari Sector, has been captured by Han, Leia, Luke, and Chewie, the Clawdite, Tunga Arpagion, can impersonate him at the Moncaladrome on Mon Cala. His attitude takes Grand Admiral Urtya and Queen Trios by surprise. The opera begins and See-Threepio maneuvers himself by the impostor to say, “Sir, that was…a somewhat showy entrance. Not exactly in character.” The Clawdite responds, “Are you the director? I think not. It’s my role and I’ll play it how I choose.” He then tells See-Threepio to translate the performance for him. The story by Kieron Gillen then returns to StroKill Prime where the heroes are underwater being pursued by a monstrous fish with a sharp toothed maw. They figure out why the beast is attracted to them and one of their number figures out a way to make a diversion. This is a pretty interesting action sequence, though one hero’s intrusion into the action seemed unnecessary. Once back aboard the ship, there is a fairly humorous scene at the bottom of Page 12. There’s a nice progression of dialogue scenes on 15 that illustrates the banter that a Moff must engage in. Threepio gets a lot of time in this issue to show him frazzled, frustrated, and trying to maintain decorum. The final four pages have the Rebels reaching their destination and coming upon a cliffhanger that will be extremely difficult to deal with next issue. Nothing stunning in this installment, but engaging reading. Overall grade: B

The art: The first panel of this issue from Salvador Larroca is fantastic. It’s a large panel showing the interior of the Moncaladrome with it peopled with an incredible variety of characters. The architecture of the building is stunning. There’s just a really tremendous amount of detail in this illustration. The bottom panel shows Trios and Urtya waiting for Hubi. The distance between them shows their lack of comfort at their situation. The start of the opera on 3 is beautiful. A similar opera was very difficult to make out in Revenge of the Sith, but here it looks awesome. The panel that establishes where the heroes are is fun and frantic. Beginning on Page 7 some exterior shots are created that capture the realism of the moment, but I don’t want realism: I want to see what the heck is going on. It’s a comic book, Mr. Larroca, you are allowed to cheat with reality when it comes to the lighting of a scene. I didn’t get atmosphere from 7 – 11, I got pages that didn’t need to be fully rendered, where outlines are made to suffice. This left me incredibly frustrated as a reader: I want to see the action, not guess it.  Things vastly improved back in the interior setting, though Han’s collar is magically untucking itself and then retucking itself. The brief return to the Moncaladrome is lavish setting, again, with many different species and spectacular architecture. There’s a funny visual scene on 18 that sums up both sides of a skirmish visually. The final page is almost a full-paged splash, were it not for an inserted panel. The larger image is incredibly dramatic, allowing the reader to realize what’s being seen before being told. This is very well done. I’m liking the imagery, except for that action sequence that is just too obscured by darkness. Overall grade: B

The colors: Guru-eFX do a solid job on this issue’s colors. The first panel uses subdued colors to draw the reader’s eyes to the main stage and the brightly colored seats of the dignitaries. Threepio is very realistically colored in this issue, with a golden shine that’s tempered by light sources. Page 3 has the most beautiful colors of the issue, with some sensational violets and blues used for the opera performers. The coloring of the screams on 5 add some nice levity to the horrific imminent deaths of the leads. The blues on the exteriors on this page and six are great, but they sadly disappear on 7 – 11. Colors are used to communicate an action at the bottom of 12 and, combined with the art, made me laugh out loud. Sounds on 18 and 19 are given some nice punching up with appropriate colors. The colors of the main character on the final page communicate to the reader the individual’s state. Excellent job by Guru-eFX. Overall grade: A

The letters: This issue’s letters include scene settings, dialogue, Threepio dialogue, whispers, Artoo’s bleeps, screams, Wookiee roars, and sounds. They’re created by VC’s Clayton Cowles and the sounds look great. I’m liking the droid speech, Chewie’s exclamations, and the screams of the heroes in their introduction. Those cries of terror take some of the bite out of the intense visual, showing the heroes to react as anyone would. I’m still not keen on the dialogue and scene settings, which are really tiny with this issue. I’ve never seen them so tiny before. Overall grade: B+

The final line: Some fun moments, though a few cannot be seen. A transition issue as the heroes have to get from Point A to Point B and Threepio has to help an impostor survive in plain sight. A solid read. Overall grade: B+

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Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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