As Isard makes her final play at Imperial power, the Rogues are joined by Han, Chewie, Leia and Winter
in a mission as critical as the Death Star attacks.
Perhaps someone has been forwarding my previous reviews to Michael Stackpole,
because not only is he keeping up with everything I've learned to like about
this title... but he's improving on areas of minor complaints I've had.
We're back to our main storyline after a brief sidetrack in the last couple of
issues. I missed having Fel in the book and he's back, but we know see him
moving on as his internal struggle about leaving the Empire is resolved... he
now must face the disapproval from both sides about what he has done. I hope
that his personal struggles continue to be played and that he's not reduced to
a simple hot shot pilot.
My main beef with the title has been the lack of sophisticated Imperial
leaders. Much to my delight, Pestage is given a brain in this issue and we're
given a glimpse that he didn't rise to power simply based on nifty wardrobe.
This new layer of deception bodes well.
A second problem I have is "cheap" cameos of main movie characters in books
about 'secondary' characters like the parade of stars in XWing #25. The
Millennium Falcon on the cover should give you a hint that Han, Chewie and
Leia make an appearance. This time, it's no cheap ploy at ratings.. they're
important to the story while the focus remains squarely on the Rogues.
As I mentioned in my preview of the book, previous incarnations of Winter have
disappointed me... but here she's written exactly right, IMO, particularly
Leia's description of her and utilizing her ability pass for the Princess.
I like how each surviving member of the squad is introduced at the start of
each story arc. It gives new readers a chance to jump in, plus it lets me know
how each artist is going to interpret each character.
Johnson's work has a somewhat more "serious" tone than in the last issue, as
is appropriate for the story. It still might be a little light in tone, but
there were many very enjoyable pages like Wedge's meeting with Ackbar.
Technology could continue to use improvement and it looks like someone gave
Chewie a really terrible haircut.
Nestelle's colors are strong as always. I particularly liked the moonlight
scene with Winter and Tycho.
This story introducing issue carries the momentum built by the previous arcs.
X-Wing continues to be the best written SW comic in the fold.
This morning I received a preview copy of X-Wing #28 which is due on the
stands March 3. I got it too late to have any response published, but I sent
the following letter to Dark Horse anyhow. I'll do a full review once it's
After a refreshing two issue vacation from the main storyline, it's nice to
get back to the main Isard conflict storyline. Not only are the strong points
of this title's recent momentum in tact, but a few of my previous concerns
have been addressed as well.
The return of Soontir Fel is obviously a highlight. I hadn't realized it, but
after making his tough decision in #25 Fel could have become a much less
interesting character. A man doesn't change overnight and I'm glad that his
inner conflict is continuing to be explored as well as facing up to former
Winter has been handled very inconsistently in the books and comics. I wasn't
crazy about her last X-Wing appearance, but her appearance here is showing
promise. I've been waiting for someone to take advantage of her ability to
pass for Leia...
Thank you for giving Pestage a little bit of intelligence. From previous
issues and reading Jax in Crimson Empire, I was beginning to think that the
first idiot to show up with a nifty suit was made the new Emperor. If I'm
reading this right, you'll be making up for this with a chess game in the
spirit of 'The Hunt for Red October'.
You likely remember my displeasure with the cameos in #25. I enjoy this
title's aspect that the characters are behind the scenes unlike the movie
principals. With that in mind, the appearance of Han and Leia is making me a
touch nervous. I'm reserving judgment on this (for now) because it looks like
they're integral to the plot and not ratings grab cameos.
I'm not sure how Johnson's style will play out with this less action driven
(more character and plot) story, but things are OK so far. His drawings of the
movie heroes were good, but the ships still need some work. I really liked the
Complexity makes this title great. Keep it up.