Dark Horse Presents Annual 2000: Girls Rule! "Aurra's Song"
Story: Dean R. Motter
Art: Isaac Buckminster
Lettering: Steve Dutro
Painted Cover: Joe Chiodo
Reviewed by: JF Boivin (07/25/2005)
Bounty hunter Aurra Sing is captured by an Anzati aboard his ship. His name is Torgo Tahn, and he taught Aurra her skills as an assassin before she struck out on her own. While Aurra is captive, they reminisce about the past, and how she was entrusted to the Anzati by her master Walla the Hutt. But she quickly turns the table on her captor, and now she reveals her plan was to collect a bounty on her former master.
This 12-page, black and white story is the second and last Star Wars story to be published in the long running Dark Horse Presents anthology (the other one "Luke Skywalker's Walkabout" was published in the previous year's annual), and will be remembered as the closest thing to an Aurra Sing origin story.
Frankly, I was surprised that it wasn't written by Tim Truman, since so far he's been the only one entrusted in developping the character's background. I don't know how much is Motter's story and how much is pre-determined backstory, but the story has some comedic undertones that don't seem to match its serious tone.
Amidst all the killings and beaheadings, there are a lot of jokes about the anzati sucking brains that made me groan. Especially when Aurra blurts out "You suck!" It seems so out of character from what we've read in the Bounty Hunters: Aurra Sing one-shot and the "Outlander" and "The Search for Aurra Sing" story arcs in the ongoing series. Even more, an Anzati says "A mind is a terrible thing to waste" before he proceeds to suck on the severed head of his former leader. All right, we get it. They suck brains.
Aside from that, the story offers a lot of interesting facts about Aurra's past, from the time she was with the Dark Woman to some time before The Phantom Menace and how she gained her bounty hunting skills. I just wish it was handled by a writer who took the subject matter a little more seriously.
Although Buckminster seems to have a lot of talent, I didn't particularly like the cartoonish look of the story overall. Aurra especially seems to like posing and smiling a lot, compared to her kind of deadly insane personality she's been portrayed as so far. She almost looks like a teenage schoolgirl in some panels. But aside from that, Buckminster does a good job. He's especially good with "camera" angles in each panel, showing a diversity of point-of-views to illustrate the action.
An important part of Aurra Sing's story, so if you're a fan you will love this one.
Rating: 7 / 10 Recommended