Star Wars: The High Republic #2 (April 2021)

There Is No Fear – Chapter II: Tomb In Space

Writer: Cavan Scott, Art: Ario Anindito, Inks: Mark Morales, Colours: Annalisa Leoni

ALL-NEW SERIES CONTINUES! WHO DESTROYED ONE OF THE JEDI’S DEADLIEST ENEMIES? The NIHIL strike! A ship found adrift in space, the crew brutally slaughtered and cargo stolen. What terror awaits the THE JEDI OF STARLIGHT BEACON as they explore the wreck? Newly knighted KEEVE TRENNIS must overcome her insecurity in the face of new teammates, but can she trust her closest ally? official solicitation

Last issue we had our introduction to the Jedi heroes of this new Star Wars era and now the story kicks into gear.  Newly knighted Keeve Trennis and her Master Sskerr, along with Terec and Ceret (bond-twins with a shared mind), are responding to a distress signal from a freighter that is under attack.  They arrive too late but sense surivors on board.

Once they are on the ship it becomes clear the the Nihil are behind the attack.  The Nihil are the new big bad of Star Wars, described as space Vikings, and they are trying to take control of hyperspace. They capture ships but pumping them full of gas to kill everyone inside before stealing the contents.  It turns out that this was a Hutt ship, big players in the Star Wars universe no matter what the era, a transporting a mystery grain that has been stolen.

Terec and Ceret sense that is something not right with Sskeer.  He is clearly suffering from PTSD due to a previous encounter with the Nihil where he lost an arm.  He is afraid and we all know where fear leads in Star Wars.

Out of nowhere Sskeer and Terec are attacked by a member of the Nihil and Terec is wounded.  This sets up a big mystery for the Jedi. If the Force is connected to everything then how come they didn’t sense the Nihil? Not that this stops Sskeer, being a Trandoshan he is a master of the hunt, and he soon cuts the Nihil in half.  But he doesn’t stop there, he goes to town on the corpse with his lightsaber.  There is clearly a darkness inside of him.

The Jedi contact Starlight Beacon and it turns out the mysterious grain that was being transported is a key ingredient needed to make Bacta.  In this era Bacta has only just been discovered and to control it’s production would bring power.  Sskeer and Ceret set off to investigate the planet where it was harvested.  While this is happening something is revealed off panel on the freighter that would have stopped them from being sent. When they arrive they are not welcome and Ceret in lured into the corn fields and vanishes.

This is a great start to the proper story. We have a number of mysteries set up.  Why can’t the Jedi sense the Nihil? How dark is Sskeer going to get?  What was seen on the ship? And what is happening on the Bacta grain planet?  This is how periodic storytelling should be done, hooking the reader to come back next issue.

The character might be new but they are already compelling. Keeve is fresh, wanting to prove herself, and somewhat nieve.  Sskeer is the seasoned master but on the edge, losing control.   This is unlike any pairing we have had before.

The next issue can’t come quick enough.


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