The Rebel Alliance has been betrayed by their newest ally in Vol. 9: Hope Dies
The Rebels have finally struck a deal to bring Mon Cala into the Alliance. The Mon Cala bring with them much-needed ships to outfit the budding Rebel Fleet. After months spent retrofitting them with Shu-Torun technology, it’s time to show off to their potential allies. But when a massive systems failure leaves the new fleet sitting ducks, and their newest ally flees as the Empire arrives to wipe them out, it’s up to Han, Luke, and Leia to find a way to save the fleet before they are snuffed out for good.
Star Wars Volume 9: Hope Dies | Written by Kieron Gillen, art by Salvador Larroca
This volume continues the storylines introduced by Kieron Gillen in Vols. 7 and 8, mainly the addition of the Mon Cala fleet and the alliance with Queen Trios. Trios, who I’m never quite sure what side she’s truly on, betrays the Rebels to save her own people leaving the Rebels in a tight jam. Luckily, our intrepid heroes are up to the task of preventing the utter destruction of the fleet.
Packed full of action, there were some great nods to past events and appearances by several characters from across Star Wars. General Jan Dodonna, General Davits Draven, Admiral Ackbar, and General Hera Syndulla all make appearances with all but Draven getting their own ship. While we know our main quartet and several others will survive, which does detract from the sense of peril, characters we know do die before the end of the storyline. There is also a great nod to the Rogue One mission when Luke rechristens Red Squadron to Rogue Squadron.
Star Wars Annual #4
This annual issue is set before the events of Star Wars #8 (the start of the “Showdown on Smuggler’s Moon” storyline) and features Luke Skywalker and Sana Starrros before they met. In this single-issue story, Sana attempts to sell an old Sith Lightsaber to a contact, while a group of Imperials bring an identical saber to Vader. Both Vader and Sana’s contact want both of the sabers, which happen to be a matched set. At the same time, Luke is picking up a cred stick for the Alliance when he gets mixed up in the Imperials chase after Sana.
This issue also gives us a Podrace. It seems the Rebels are skimming money off the bets made on the race. I can’t see Mon Mothma or Leia approving of such a way to get money, but I guess beggars can’t be choosers. We also get to see Luke attempt to pilot a Podracer as Vader watches. Like father, like son.
This was a fun little issue and a great way to introduce Sana as a criminal if read in the proper order rather than being read after the group has befriended her.
The Creative Team
Kieron Gillen was the writer of the first run of the Darth Vader comic and is the writer of Doctor Aphra. He is also the writer of the award-winning The Wicked + The Divine from Image Comics.
Salvador Larroca is the long-running artist for Marvel’s main Star Wars comic. He was also the artist on Gillen’s Darth Vader series. He is known for his photo-realistic art, that, unfortunately, isn’t always realistic. Some of the facial expressions are a bit, well, creepy.
Star Wars Annual #4 was written by Cullen Bunn. Previously, he was the writer for Star Wars: Darth Maul.
This was a great volume for action and it gave two characters a fitting send-off with their deaths. It also proves that, no matter how hard the Empire tries, they can’t kill Hope.
Star Wars Volume 9: Hope Dies by Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca is published by Marvel Comics and is available to buy NOW!
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Melissa Villy is a regular Staff Writer for Future of the Force. She is a passionate Star Wars fan and is the custodian of the FOTF Jedi Archives. Follow her on Twitter @JediLibrarian42 where she uses the force frequently!