Story: Cavan Scott
Art: Andrea Broccardo, Marika Cresta, Mark Morales
Colors: Franke William
Letterer: VC’s Ariana Maher
What They Say:
THE SIEGE OF ENLIGHTENMENT! Vildar, Tey, and Matty are forced into a corner, with enemies closing in all around. But what is the secret of the hidden Jedi vault? And who will die in the freezing Jedha desert?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The High Republic era continues to be something I’m fascinated by but hasn’t really become something that I’m just heavily into yet. I’ve dabbled in a couple of books and several comics, but it hasn’t had that gateway that’s worked for me where I’m really invested in following it. Cavan Scott’s involvement in the novel side definitely has made for some solid comics in the previous run and my hope is that as time goes on and they all get a better handle on the larger approach, things move in more interesting directions. This issue has Andrea Broccardo and Marika Cresta handling the art duties with Mark Morales inking it and it has a different flow and feel than the previous issues as you’d expect. Broccardo has done a good bit of Star Wars work before but it doesn’t quite mesh with what we had before and there are a few more areas where with Williams’ coloring that it comes across a bit simpler at times.
While the series started off strong, it’s in this weird place at this point where there are a lot of things going on and it all just feels all over the place. Simply, we didn’t have enough time to connect with the characters and the setting in order to feel like we understand things, especially on a monthly-ish schedule. And with so many different religious orders here, and a lot of characters introduced, it’s kind of all over the map. This installment is a mix of action and trying to not do anything as we get Vildar and those with him, now in one of the buildings run by a particular order, just trying to catch their breath. It’s been chaotic and whatever is pushing people into violence has had Vildar and those with him like Matty trying to calm things down but also basically working a retreat to find a chance for peace. It’s been decent in that regard, especially as we get a bit more on Vildar and why he came here.
The general idea of finding a place where he could be a Jedi but not get involved in actual action/combat events makes sense after some of the things he’s seen but also his childhood that has left a scar on him, which surfaces a bit here. It’s lightly done but conveys the points well and helps to shape why Vildar’s not running out into the street like Tey thinks they should to help people. What’s going to motivate him, however, is when Oliviah contacts them while out at the statue with Leebon and reveals that the Path has found them there in the ruins and taken Leebon hostage while disarming her. It’s a brutal sequence overall but it shows more what this group is after as Leebon was harboring a secret related to the Rod and it’s presumably been hidden in the statue for quite some time, hence the push to get both him in the statute. Bigger things are going on here and it’s being made more and more clear that Vildar picked the worst place for a quiet assignment.
There’s a fair bit going on throughout this issue but it’s just a mix of retreat action stuff for the most part with a lot of characters that haven’t had time to really feel cemented yet. It has its decent moments to be sure, and I like getting a bit more out of Vildar, but it’s still hard to really get what each area is, which religious group operates out of there, and the nature of the groups since it shifted so fast from introduction to action. I do like what we get out at the statue with Oliviah because that feels like it’s working a better pace and just two characters so you’re able to roll with it better. The shift in art isn’t bad but it’s not what we had before and it feels a bit off because of it. It’s a frantic installment in some ways and I’m still trying to connect with Vildar and his approach while also having to get a handle on both Matty and Tey, who at last feels like they’re on the right path.
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Marvel Comics
Release Date: March 29th, 2023