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Star Wars #13
Emissaries to Malastare Part 1 (of 6)

Writing: Tim Truman
Pencilling: Tom Lyle
Inking: Robert Jones
Coloring: Dan Jackson
Lettering: Michael Taylor
Cover: Mark Schultz
Released: 12/22/1999

Reviewed by: JF Boivin (01/04/2000)

SUMMARY:

A'Sharad Hett passes a lightsaber test with the Dark Woman. Six members of the Jedi Council prepare to go to Malastare to negociate a peace treaty with the Red Iaro terrorist organization.


[final cover]


[preview cover]


THE STORY

The series starts with a bang. I like the way the plot is all set up and ready to go in one issue. Although the lightsaber duel sequence lasts for seven pages, it does not slow the story down. I question its relevance however. Does it happen for the sole purpose of showing us how weird the Dark Woman is, or will this sequence pick up later in the series? I guess we'll find out soon enough.

Tim Truman impresses me again. I love continuity fixes, and there are one-and-a-half in this issue. The first one explains the whole "Mace Windu's lightsaber looks like Darth Maul's" mystery; of course! It was Eeth Koth's! Does this confirm that the Zabrak Eeth Koth is of the same species as Darth Maul? And if so, why would they all have the same model of lightsaber???

The half-continuity fix is the reference to "the Gran governors on Malastare." It was a pet peeve of mine that Malastare, Sebulba's home planet, was represented by Gran senators in the movie. Gran were supposed to be from Kinyen, dagnabit! Another pet peeve was that Sebulba is said to be from Pixelito in the movie. But they already found a fix for that...

I love the feeling I get when I read this series. It centers on characters that were only background material in the movie, thus changing our perception of them when we see the movie again. I feel I know them better. Just like when I first read the old Han Solo novels and the re-watched A New Hope.

The bad? Only one line apparently missing: on page 13, Ki says that Sharad Hett was not the first Jedi slain by Aurra Sing. The next panel he says: "She didn't get Sarad Hett's!" I think there should be a sentence in between explaining that Aurra keeps her victims' lightsabers.

One last note, which I don't know if it's good or bad but leaves me confused: the Dark Woman vanishes into walls twice before other Jedi, a power I've never even heard of before, and none of the witnesses seem the least impressed!?!

I'm also undecided about the usefullness of Anakin's cameo. I'll see as the series progresses. I really hope he comes back later in the series.


THE ART

Let me start off by saying that I don't like most of the character likenesses. I know it's a comic book so they don't have to look like pictures, but they don't have to look that silly! Just look at Mace Windu and Yaddle... I especially don't like the Dark Woman's face when seen from the front. She looks like a jolly old hag. But she was never portrayed by an actress and was only seen in comics, so what the heck do I know? But don't get me wrong, I love Tom Lyle's art. The angles are very cinematic and the action poses are very realistic. The great inking and coloring really help too. And the Dark Woman doesn't look as bad when seen from the side. I just don't like the way the characters look. Even Anakin looks like Chief Wiggum if he was drawn by Jack Kirby. I hope I'm not being too nasty here because overall the art is great.


CONCLUSIONS

Sets-up the series nicely. Makes me anxious to read the next issue.

Rating: 9 / 10 Highly Recommended

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