Ghosts Part 2
Story: John Ostrander, Jan Duursema
Script: John Ostrander
Pencils: Jan Duursema
Inking: Dan Parsons
Coloring: Brad Anderson
Lettering: Michael Heisler
Cover: Jan Duursema
Reviewed by: JF Boivin (10/08/2007)
Cade Skywalker, Wolf Sazen, Shado Vao and K'kruhk have all found themselves on Ossus and they meet the Yuuzhan Vong master shaper Nei Rin, who has been safekeeping the Jedi artifacts after the Sith attack on the Jedi Temple. She thinks Cade should be the inheritor of this legacy, but he rejects it. Feeling Cade is troubled, Wolf has a discusison with him and tries to put him in touch with the feelings he has been denying for years. During a meditation trance, Cade recalls the events after his father died in the attack, and a visit from his ancestor Luke Skywalker's ghost shows him the path to follow: Cade has delivered a Jedi named Hosk Trey'lis to the Sith, now he should go back and save him to rectify his mistake. Before departing for Coruscant and the Sith Temple, Cade receives his fighter's lightsaber as a gift from Nei Rin, and an old astromech droid named R2-D2 from Master K'kruhk.
When we left off our Jedi heroes last issue, they were being attacked by Yuuzhan Vong warriors underneath the ruins of the Jedi Temple on Ossus. In an unexpected twist, we find out that Choka Skell and Liaan Lah are good guys, protectors of the Master Shaper Nei Rin. She goes on to explain that she was on Ossus when the Sith attacked (see issue #1) and Kol Skywalker was killed. Rin and Kol had been working on a project to restore planets who were transformed by the Yuuzhan Vong, but their efforts had some unpredictable negative effects, which Rin found out later was due to sabotage by the Sith. After Kol's death, she decided to stay behind and guard the remaining Jedi artifacts including Kol's lightsaber which was strangely untouched by the scavengers who came after the attack. She then burned Kol's body.
We also see some of said scavengers in another flashback, namely the pirate Rav and his crew who found Cade Skywalker floating in orbit. A young crewmember named Jariah Syn convinced Rav to keep Cade alive for his knowledge, and the crew then proceeded to land on the planet and raid the remains of the temple. Cade had to pretend not to feel anything when he saw his father's body for the last time. Cade's flashback happens during a meditation session. After Rin cliams the Jedi artifacts are Cade's legacy, the young bounty hunter refuses them and then goes on a rant about how the Jedi are slaves of their traditions and protectors of a galaxy that keeps turning against them. And just last issue, Cade made the decision to resume his Jedi training. So much for that thought.
While sitting by himself at the site of his father's death and contemplating a death stick, Cade is then confronted by Wolf Sazen. The truth hurts when Sazen makes Cade confront his fear and guilt over his father's death, and Cade immediately unleashes his anger in a fistfight with his former Master. Sazen also makes him realize that by reviving him and Princess Marasiah, Cade touched the Dark Side deeply by imposing his will on the Force. Realizing his father sacrificed himself for a good cause, and if Cade had interferred it would have been meaningless, he calms down. That's when Sazen shows Cade how to go in a meditation trance to find peace within himself. After the aforementioned flashback with Rav, Cade then has a vision of Hosk Trey'lis, the Jedi he captured back in issue #2 and sold to Darth Krayt. This would have been enough, but just to emphasize what Cade just saw Luke Skywalker's spirit once again appears to Cade. That part is kind of useless in my opinion, as Luke only repeats what we just saw in Cade's vision. But again, this is to appeal to the mass market of Star Wars fans so they can identify some characters they know from the movies.
In that same vein, as Cade is preparing to leave for his mission to rescue the Bothan Jedi (and is given his father's lightsaber), we meet another familiar character; Artoo Detoo is still around, although he's been "updated to current specs" over the last 100+ years. Again, here I should think it's cool to see the droid still alive and kickin', but I can't help but feeling this is a marketing ploy. On top of that, Cade inexplicably is able to communicate with Artoo without a problem, and all he needs the droid for is to program the coordinates for Coruscant, which are literally the easiest coordinates in the galaxy: zero-zero-zero! The tale of how Artoo came into the possession of Master K'kruhk could be a good one though.
The prospect of an encounter between Cade and Krayt is interesting (especially with the much-tauted revelation of Krayt's identity). Cade also doesn't know that his former associates Jariah and Deliah are captive of the Sith, and one can only imagine that they will meet again. But all this is speculation on the future. As far as this issue is concerned, Cade's reason to risk his life to save the Bothan Jedi ("No one dies for me. Never again.") is not very plausible, especially after Cade's little diatribe about what he thinks of Jedi. So far, I can't get to like Cade Skywalker. His erratic personality and constant flip-flopping of opinions is very distracting. One day he hates Jedi, the next he wants to be one, and then he's back to hating them. I also feel like the only reason all those other characters put up with his annoying tantrums and constantly ditching people is because he is part of the Skywalker legacy. Shado Vao even reveals to K'kruhk that if Cade hadn't been a Skywalker, he would have been thrown out of the Academy years ago. This doesn't make him likeable or even realistic. I think Ostrander should work on Cade's personality and at least put some logic into his actions, whether he goes good or bad. or stays in-between.
I'm a huge fan of Duursema's art, and once again she does an amazing job. The characters' looks are consistent, the Yuuzhan Vong look cool, everything else is cool. The only problem I have is Artoo's depiction. I think there's something not quite right with him, mostly his head and the angles of his body. The inks by Parsons and colors by Anderson are unbelievable as usual. Overall, it's a great looking book.
Most fans will be happy to see K'kruhk, Luke, Artoo and the Yuuzhan Vong. Me, I'm not impressed. Nevertheless, the story is still interesting.
Rating: 6 / 10