A Star Wars: Yoda #1 Micro-Review – The Smoldering Jedi

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Star Wars Yoda 1, cover, November 2022, Phil NotoTITLE: Star Wars: Yoda #1
AUTHOR: Cavan Scott
ARTISTS:
Nico Leon, Dono Sanchez-Almara (Colorist), Joe Caramagna (Letterer). Cover by Phil Noto.

RELEASED: November 23, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Nico Leon and Dono Sanchez-Almara really hit this one out of the park from an artistic perspective. Leon has a great handle on Yoda. There’s a gorgeous full-page shot of him, lightsaber lit, standing atop a smouldering surface.

And of course, I’m a sucker for Phil Noto drawing Star Wars. So I’m very pleased with the cover.

On the writing side of things, this is a pretty standard, yet still nice tale about Yoda saving a tribe of villagers from an evil force. It’s most of what you want and expect from a solo Yoda story.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

The Essential Clone Wars: “Destiny”

***I must confess that, despite being a huge Star Wars geek, I have yet to see the landmark Clone Wars animated show in its entirety. I’m aiming to rectify that to a large extent here, as we look at pivotal episodes of the series in, “The Essential Clone Wars.”

SERIES: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
EPISODE:
S6:E12 – “Destiny”
WITH THE VOICE TALENTS OF:
Tom Kane, Jaime King, Ashley Eckstein, Corey Burton, James Arnold Taylor
WRITER:
Christian Taylor
DIRECTOR:
Kyle Dunlevy
PREMIERE DATE:
 March 7, 2014
SYNOPSIS:
Yoda continues his quest for life beyond death.

***New around here? Check out our Star Wars review archive!***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Yoda opting to leave his lightsaber behind as he ventures into the unknown is a really nice callback (Or call forward?) to The Empire Strikes Back. Our little green friend wasn’t asking Luke to do anything he wouldn’t do himself.

On the subject of Luke, the line “[Yoda] is to teach one that will save the universe from great imbalance.” is obviously a reference to him. Cute. Again, a nice little nod to Empire.

“Destiny” brings us the creation of a delightful little one-off character I’ll call “Dark Yoda,” i.e. the essence of the darkness that lies within Yoda. He’s a little reminiscent of Gollum of The Lord of the Rings fame. But he’s no less delightful for it.

One thing I definitely appreciated about the Yoda/Dark Yoda confrontation: No lightsabers. It would have been easy to turn the scrap between the two of them into a lightsaber duel. But they resisted the temptation. Thus we get to see Yoda in a physical fight with no weapons, which I don’t know that Star Wars had done up to this point.

There are a lot of floating platforms on this world that Yoda has to hop to and from. Gives it a little bit of a Super Mario Bros. feeling, doesn’t it?

Yoda’s destination going into the next episode is a world called Moraband, which is referred to as “the ancient homeworld of the Sith.” What’s interesting to me about that from a creative standpoint is that if this episode had been made today, Yoda likely would have journeyed to Exegol. That’s a fun little thought…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

George Lucas on Star Wars: The Old Man and the Machine

***Think what you will about George Lucas, but in terms of Star Wars, it can all be traced back to him. That’s why I always find it so interesting to listen to him talk about it. His creative process, the reason certain decisions were made, and how these movies became the pop cultural staples they are. This space is dedicated to just that. This is “George Lucas on Star Wars.”***

***New around here? Check out Primary Ignition‘s “George Lucas on Star Warsarchive!***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Obi-Wan Kenobi, Star Wars Episode IV, A New Hope, lightsaber

The Scene: Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader prepare to duel with lightsabers aboard the Death Star.

George Lucas Says (Via The Birth of the Lightsaber featurette): “In the beginning, the first film, Episode IV, it was a fight between a very old man and a man who was only partially a man, mostly a mechanical being. So it really wasn’t much of a sword fight at all. … As we went on, we wanted to have the lightsaber fights become faster and more intense as Luke became more proficient in the art of sword fighting.”

I Say: I’ve heard George talk about this a number of times over the years. It works fine as an in-story explanation of why there are no acrobatics or fancy sword fighting moves in A New Hope. But if Star Wars had been made in the prequel era, i.e. the late ’90s and early 2000s, you’ve got to know that Obi-Wan would have been doing all sorts of wild stunts. Remember that Count Dooku, who can’t be that far removed from Obi-Wan in terms of age, does a somersault off a balcony in Revenge of the Sith for no apparent reason.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

A Star Wars #29 Micro-Review – A Masquerade Ball! (Or Not…)

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Star Wars 29, cover, 2022, E.M. GistTITLE: Star Wars #29
AUTHOR: Charles Soule
ARTISTS:
Ramon Rosanas, Rachelle Rosenberg (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by E.M. Gist.

RELEASED: November 2, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Another awesome cover from E.M. Gist this month. I love the concept of our Rebel heroes going to some kind of masquerade ball in disguise. Granted, that’s not what actually happens in the issue, which is a downer. But the outfits are still a lot of fun. Especially Luke in the domino mask.

I know I talk about this every few months or so. But I feel passionate enough about it that it’s worth repeating: I hate Luke’s gold lightsaber. Things would be so much more interesting without it.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

The Essential Clone Wars: “The Lawless”

***I must confess that, despite being a huge Star Wars geek, I have yet to see the landmark Clone Wars animated show in its entirety. I’m aiming to rectify that to a large extent here, as we look at pivotal episodes of the series in, “The Essential Clone Wars.”

Satine death, Star Wars the Clone Wars, The LawlessSERIES: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
EPISODE:
S5:E16 – “The Lawless”
WITH THE VOICE TALENTS OF:
James Arnold Taylor, Anna Graves, Sam Witwer, Ian Abercrombie, Katee Sackhoff
WRITER:
Chris Collins
DIRECTOR:
Brian Kalin O’Connell
PREMIERE DATE:
February 2, 2013
SYNOPSIS:
Obi-Wan travels to Mandalore to save Satine from Maul’s forces.

***New around here? Check out our Star Wars review archive!***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Wait, Satine has a nephew named Korkie? Why is that funny to me?

So now we have not only have Mandalorians with red armor, but Mandalorians whose helmets have horns like Darth Maul. You just know the artists and designers had fun with that one.

Having received Duchess Satine’s desperate transmission for help, Obi-Wan travels to Mandalore to save her. Question: Did Yoda and the Jedi Council know about him going to Mandalore, or did Obi-Wan do it on his own? If so, does he face any consequences for that? Just asking…

After they are captured by Mandalorian forces, Obi-Wan is forced to watch as Satine is executed by Maul. Needless to say, this makes their feud even more personal than it already was. I wasn’t necessarily surprised to see Satine die. But I was surprised to see her simply executed the way she was. She didn’t go out in a blaze of glory or anything. They just got everybody in a room, and Maul killed her. Simple as that.

Sensing what’s happening, Darth Sidious personally travels to Mandalore to confront Maul. And again I have to ask, does anyone know where he went? He is the chancellor of the Republic, and they are in the middle of a war. He can’t just go off without telling anybody, can he?

I understand these kinds of details aren’t necessarily important in the context of telling the story. The important thing is that Obi-Wan and Palpatine ultimately end up on Mandalore. But it’s fair question, isn’t it?

I noticed that just before the two-on one duel starts with Sidious, Maul, and Savage Opress, Maul does the “Obi-Wan pose” (shown below). I can only assume that was intentional. The Obi-Wan pose wasn’t as much of a thing yet. But the show had done it before. And of course, we’d see it in Revenge of the Sith.

Ian Abercrombie, who voices Palpatine/Sidious, has the character’s evil laugh down pat. That makes his fight sequence with Maul and Opress that much more effective.

There are a lot of “echoes” in this episode. You’ve got Obi-Wan luring that Mandalorian on to his ship and stealing his uniform, much like they did in A New Hope. Then, seconds before he sees Palpatine, Maul says he senses a presence he hasn’t felt since… Again, like in A New Hope. Then, after it’s revealed that Bo-Katan is Satine’s sister, Obi-Wan says “I’m so sorry,” much like he says to Padme in Revenge of the Sith.

Star Wars does love it’s callbacks, doesn’t it?

To Maul’s shock and horror, Sidious kills Savage Opress. Thus, possibly my least favorite character in all of Star Wars is put down. Whatever shall we do without him?

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

The Essential Clone Wars: “The Gathering”

***I must confess that, despite being a huge Star Wars geek, I have yet to see the landmark Clone Wars animated show in its entirety. I’m aiming to rectify that to a large extent here, as we look at pivotal episodes of the series in, “The Essential Clone Wars.”

SERIES: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
EPISODE:
S5:E6 – “The Gathering”
WITH THE VOICE TALENTS OF:
Olivia Hack, Jeff Fischer, Greg Cipes, Georgina Cordova, Dee Bradley Baker
WRITER:
Christian Taylor
DIRECTOR:
Kyle Dunlevy
PREMIERE DATE:
November 3, 2012
SYNOPSIS:
A group of Younglings travel to Ilum for a Jedi rite of passage.

***New around here? Check out our Star Wars review archive!***

I was immediately disappointed when I realized the dialogue for Gungi, the young wookiee, consisted of recycled Chewbacca noises. I understand it was probably cheaper than hiring an actor to come in to grunt and growl. But at the same time, they had both Dee Bradley Baker and Tom Kane in the cast for this episode. You’re tellin’ me neither of them could fire off a decent wookiee noise? I don’t buy it.

On the subject of voice actors, I was pleasantly surprised to see Greg Cipes on the credits as the voice of Zatt. Cipes also provided the voice of Michelangelo in Nickelodeon’s 2012 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series. When you know its him, and listen intently, you can hear Mikey in Zatt’s voice.

From a writing standpoint, I can appreciate the whole “Gathering” ritual. But part of me does wish it wasn’t centered around lightsabers. The Jedi are more than just superheroes with laser swords, and there’s so much emphasis on lightsabers already. It might have been nice for them to think a little bit outside the box here.

Question: As he’s the head teacher for the Younglings, not to mention the grand master of the Jedi Order, does Yoda have to be present at all these Gathering events? If so, that seems like the kind of thing he should have pawned off on somebody else. Especially during a time of war.

This episode takes on a much different tone when you consider that most, if not all these kids were likely murdered during the events of Revenge of the Sith. Possibly by Darth Vader himself. Kind of a downer, huh?

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

A Star Wars #26 Micro-Review – Going a Simpler Route

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Star Wars 26, cover, 2022, E.M. GistTITLE: Star Wars #26
AUTHOR: Charles Soule
ARTISTS:
Andres Genolet, Rachelle Rosenberg (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by E.M. Gist.
RELEASED:
August 17, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I love this cover. It’s got a great old fashioned movie poster feel to it, and the background is a delightfully simple blue and white. I even like Luke’s leather jacket, which has a vague Indiana Jones feel to it.

The interior art is a little bit more simple too, compared with issues past.. It’s something of a pleasant change, actually. Star Wars artists tend to go into such rich detail, which is great. But this more animated style is welcome too.

All these issues in, and I still don’t like the gold lightsaber…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Astonishing Art: Leia as a Jedi by Uzuri

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I came across this piece on my Twitter feed a couple weeks ago, and couldn’t help but feature it here. Uzuri shows us what Leia might look like as a Jedi.

*sigh* Oh what might have been. Or could it still be, given what we learned in The Rise of Skywalker? Maybe some kind of story with Luke as a full-fledged Jedi, and Leia as his Padawan?

Book it!

Leia as a Jedi, Uzuri

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Star Wars: Brotherhood – 6 Takeaways From the Novel

Star Wars Brotherhood, coverBy Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I’ve got more than 60 Star Wars novels under my belt. I won’t say that makes me an expert. But it does give me a sense of when I’m reading one that stands out among the franchise’s extensive library.

Brotherhood by Mike Chen quickly became one of my favorites. It takes us through the transition Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker take from a father and son, master and apprentice relationship in Attack of the Clones, to the brotherly bond they have through The Clone Wars and Revenge of the Sith. It’s a cool, clover, and sensible premise for a Star Wars story. Chen, on his first try, proves he’s more than adept at navigating everybody’s favorite galaxy far, far away.

Here’s what I came away from Brotherhood thinking about…

1. It’s a bridge between Attack of the Clones and The Clone Wars. Not just figuratively in terms of Obi-Wan and Anakin’s dynamic, but literally. There’s an argument to be made that the 2008 Clone Wars movie, where Ahsoka becomes Anakin’s apprentice, should be set immediately after the events of this book. That’s how well it all fits together.

2. Anakin and other Padawans were hurried to Jedi status to accommodate for the war. For me, this was a head-canon thing that Brotherhood actually put into print. With a war broken out, it makes sense that there would be a need for more Jedi to serve and protect the Republic. Thus, Anakin and other apprentices were given the rank of Jedi relatively quickly. Perhaps even before they were fully prepared?

3. Anakin and Padme once clandestinely banged on a blanket somewhere on the streets of Coruscant. Is this a childish thing to take away from this book? Why, yes. Yes it is. And does Mike Chen actually write a sex scene between Anakin and Padme? Of course not. But he does directly indicate that it happens.

Oh c’mon! I can’t help it! The idea that Anakin and Padme had discreet sex somewhere on the streets of Coruscant is the kind of thing I just can’t forget. It is a little romantic, I suppose. From a certain point of view…

4. Neimoidians struggled to establish an identity within the Republic away from the Trade Federation. When the average Star Wars fan thinks of a Neimoidian, they inevitably think of Nute Gunray. And when they think of Nute Gunray, they think of the Trade Federation. It makes sense, given what we see in the prequels. Chen, to his credit, took that association and wrapped it into Brotherhood. It’s a nice reminder that you can’t judge an entire race based on the actions of one or two individuals.

It’s a lesson that’s not inapplicable to real-world scenarios, either.

5. Qui-Gon believed in them. I’m a Qui-Gon Jinn fan. Maybe I’m in the minority among fans in that sense. But I enjoy him. So when Star Wars creators find a way to tie him into things, be it directly or indirectly, it hits a soft spot with me.

Chen talks a lot about Qui-Gon Jinn as he’s wrapping up Brotherhood. Specifically, what Obi-Wan and Anakin have in common as it relates to him. He doesn’t frame it as the centerpiece to their new brotherly bond, nor should he. But it is there, and it’s worth acknowledging.

6. Not all Jedi have to be warriors. Chen creates a character for Brotherhood named Mill Alibeth, a young Jedi initiate who is apprehensive about tapping into the Force and wielding a lightsaber. As someone who’s lived with mental illness, it occurred to me that she might actually be the first Jedi we’ve seen with anxiety. Now that’s something different.

Through her time with Anakin, Mill learns there is more than one path to the Force and being a Jedi. We’re reminded that it’s not all about swinging lightsabers. And in a franchise that loves to overemphasize lightsabers, that’s a very welcome notion.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Toy Chest Theater: Obi-Wan Kenobi by @jdv_edits

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Tomorrow, Obi-Wan Kenobi wraps up on Disney+. While the series definitely has its share of critics (Some Star Wars fans really hate Star Wars…), I’m among those who’ve enjoyed the series overall.

In that spirit, here we have a Lego image from @jdv_edits, depicting the scene in “Part IV” where Obi-Wan holds back the ocean water from rushing in through the window. I think that what pushes this pic over the edge is how it’s lit. It’s not an exact replica of how that scene on the show was lit. But it’s enough to make it look like it should be in one of those Lego Star Wars games.

Lego Obi-Wan Kenobi, jdv_edits

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.