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Doctor Aphra #25 Review

4 min read

“Desolation”

Creative Staff:
Story: Alyssa Wong
Art: Minkyu Jung
Colors: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna

What They Say:
The spark undying lives in Doctor Aphra’s body, and as its power grows, so does its hunger! But Aphra’s plotting her own escape…! As everyone flocks to the Vermillion, their showdown will change everything!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The storyline is barreling forward with this arc as Alyssa Wong is playing in an interesting area with the Ascendant but at the same time, it feels so much less like Star Wars and far more like Marvel Comics, if you know what I mean. This issue keeps Minkyu Jung on board for the artwork once again, which is definitely a bit plus to it as it definitely has a bit more polish to it, even if she and the previous artist have a lot of similarities in capturing the Marvel Star Wars “house” brand design. She again captures the characters and works them really well in their design and movement. There’s some solid detail here and Rachelle Rosenberg’s color design helps to give it a bit more weight and continuity with the bulk of the rest of the Star Wars books.

The nature of this storyline feels odd in that it’s been going on for a while since the introduction of Kho and we have two main events playing out at the moment. The material with Aphra inside the memories in dealing with Miril is interesting as it explores some of what went on with the Ascendant and how all this came out. Miril digs into the materials side a bit here but Aphra is just hoping that they can provide a way to turn the thing off. But Miril, who is just a copy of a consciousness and memory, makes it clear that what happened was one in a billion chance so nothing was made to deal with it. That puts Aphra in a bit of a pickle at the moment but it just means there’ll be a creative way for her to wrest control back from the Spark and go through that particular fight. You can see where it’s going but it again just doesn’t feel quite as “Star Wars” as I’d like.

For the rest of the currently expansive cast, it’s largely Sana leading the charge of the rescue mission on board the Vermillion. The plan is pretty basic and it uses all their resources, including the murderbots, to try and pull it off. It’s a matter of being a step ahead of the Spark itself which isn’t easy but we get the additional complication of Lucky and his partner being there as well. But for most of this, it’s just trying to get things in place while Kho goes to deal with the Spark directly while trying to not be tempted by her honeyed words, especially since Kho was the one who was a True Believer in regards to the Ascendant. I do like that it made sense for it to go for Aphra because of her tech aspects and implants, but you can also see this as something that Kho, who has wanted this for so long, can be both hurt yet swayed even if it would be counterproductive to what’s actually going on.

In Summary:
There’s plenty going on here but it feels like things continue to slip away from what works and who the character is, at least to me. And part of it is being colored by some of the things going on in the Star Wars property itself right now. Doctor Aphra feels more like a Boba Fett TV show when it should be at least a Mandolorian but would be far better served being an Andor, if that makes sense. I’d even be fine if it leaned more Indiana Jones but it’s just in a spot that doesn’t work and it feels like the sooner things come to a close and we figure out what’s next the better.

Grade: C+

Age Rating: 9+
Released By: Marvel Comics
Release Date: October 26th, 2022
MSRP: $3.99

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