Star Wars #9 (Marvel, 2015)
Back in the day, when I was a small nerd girl and I first watched the original Star Wars trilogy, I had made some assumptions about what went on in between each film. Some of these turned out to be accurate (Vader being obsessed with Obi-Wan, for example, because IT’S NOT LIKE THE GUY IS SUBTLE ABOUT IT.) Other things…less so.
One area in which I missed the mark was that I guess I had mostly assumed, given Obi-Wan’s Force-Ghost-Voice-Assist during the destruction of Death Star I, that Luke and Old Ben were chatting on the regular in between Episodes 4 and 5. Not so! Hilariously, Obi-Wan appears to have kept his distance from Luke until they reconnect when Luke almost dies on Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back. Now, there could be several explanations for this radio silence, including:
- Luke isn’t strong enough in the Force yet to easily call up 1-800-FRC-GHST whenever he feels like it;
- Obi-Wan has had it with the Skywalkers and has understandably not decided if he feels like mentoring any of them anymore;
- Obi-Wan is too busy haunting the everloving fuck out of Vader to bother talking to Luke (I hope it’s this one. Obi-Wan haunting Vader is very important to me.)
Whatever the case, Luke’s been pretty much out there on his own since Episode 4, trying desperately to Jedify himself as much as possible using only Google and a cocktail napkin Old Ben wrote on. So, in an attempt to learn more about his Crappy Destiny, Luke had set out in the last issue of this comic series to Nar Shadda, a sleazy planet where he’d hoped to find someone who could smuggle him on to Coruscant undetected so that he could go to the Jedi’s old temple and…I dunno. I guess he was planning to rifle through their leftover belongings just like he’d done at Obi-Wan’s old house on Tatooine.
Things had not gone as planned though, and The Skywalker Saber got stolen! Oh no! Man, that thing has been on a WILD RIDE: Clone Wars heroics, killing a bunch of baby Jedi, tearing through the Separatists, parting ways with its original owner when said owner did something stupid and he got his ass handed to him by Obi-Wan Kenobi, then handed off by Old Ben to Hesitant Luke…and we still don’t even know what this thing’s ultimate fate is going to be. I couldn’t even begin to guess, although I will say that I am concerned for the fate of Rey’s arms.
Recurring Theme: Star Wars vs. Farmers
So we open back on Nar Shadda, where Luke is tearing off after the dude that stole his lightsaber, which he heartbreakingly declares is “all he has”. Sob! Luke chases after him, doing all kinds of flips and leaps and rolls, until the thief clings onto a departing ship with his magnetic glove, and taunts down to Luke:
HONEST TO GOD, Star Wars: again, WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM WITH FARMERS?! FFS. Is “farmer” like one of the ultimate insults in this universe? And if so, WHY? I feel so indignant on behalf of farmers right now, I swear. WHAT DOES “ROOF-RUN LIKE A FARMER” EVEN MEAN?! I can’t even picture what sort of distinctive running style a farmer would have, nor why this would be a bad thing to have. Aren’t a lot of farmers in fairly decent or even very good shape? I would presume many of them could outrun your average American, given that their lives actually require them to go outside and walk and lift heavy things sometimes. And to specify that they’re “roof-running” (since they are leaping across buildings) is just hilarious. Like, why would a farmer HAVE a distinctive style of LEAPING FROM ONE ROOF TO ANOTHER? I DON’T UNDERSTAND, STAR WARS. WHAT DO YOU HAVE AGAINST THESE PEOPLE. THEY JUST WANT TO WORK THE LAND IN PEACE.
Anyways, obviously being dragged like this is not something Luke is about to stand for (running like a farmer! HOW DARE HE!), so he Force-jumps (? or just very big regular-jumps) his way up to the guy, grabs onto his leg, and the two of them tumble back down to the ground.
Recurring Theme: The Debatable Merits of Continuing the Skywalker Lineage
The guy collects himself: you broke my glove! And you almost killed us! YOU ARE A FUCKING CRAZY PERSON WHAT EVEN AM I DEALING WITH HERE?!
Luke, dusting himself off and reclaiming Anakin’s lightsaber, corrects him: no, I’m not insane…
OH MY GOD. Um, OK, well, thanks for the shout-out, Star Wars, since this line was clearly written with me in mind. Oh, poor sweet dumb Luke. He’s so new here that he doesn’t even realize that being insane and being a Skywalker are the same thing. He’ll figure it out though. Yes he will.
Recurring Theme: Skywalker vs Hutt
Luke gets to his feet, observing to Artoo that the giant angry mob that had been chasing them out of that cantina in the last comic seem to have backed off. Golly gee, Artoo! I wonder why?
It is at this moment that Luke is introduced to a HUGE Hutt standing behind him, who informs him that the reason everyone stopped following him is that he’s now in “Hutta Town”. LOL. Star Wars names.
Towering over Luke (seriously this guy is ENORMOUS,) he says that THIS means that everything here — including that pretty lil’ lightsaber of Luke’s — belongs to him. Hand it over!
Leia Organa, Will Totally Shoot You
Back on wherever the hell Han and Leia and Sana Starros are, things are getting dicey. TIE fighters have landed and now a bunch of bad guys are making their way over to the trio. Sana smirks: welp, Leia will be taken care of by these guys, Solo, so now it’s time for you and I to head off into the sunset together!
Leia immediately goes into Anakin Skywalker Kill Shit and Ask Questions Later Mode and, over Han’s objections, starts shooting at the Imperials:
Han, furious at Sana’s repeated attempts to get him to just take off with her, throws back that the Empire’s not just after Leia, they’re also after him: he’s a rebel, too!
Sana is flummoxed: what?! OMG. While she processes this information, Leia holds her own against the troopers in her midst, prompting one of them to be like “sheesh who knew that a princess could kick so much ass?” PUH-lease.
Eventually they hold off the baddies long enough to get within reach of Sana’s ship, and they all somewhat begrudgingly decide that they guess they’d rather travel together than be killed. (People deciding that being with their crew is marginally preferable to being murdered is pretty much the TL; DR of Star Wars.)
Luke Skywalker, Throwback Fighting
Luke finds himself up against a couple of magnaguards, for what I assume was the fact that the author/illustrator/story group/whatever nerd was involved here just kinda wanted to see Luke Skywalker fight a magnaguard because they’re cool.
Grakkus the Hutt (haha) is like HOW DO YOU LIKE THEM APPLES?! These Clone Wars holdovers are designed to fight Jedi Knights, and OBVIOUSLY YOU ARE NOT ONE BECAUSE HA HA YOU SUCK. Where exactly did you even get this lightsaber, kid?
The guy that stole the lightsaber before tells the Hutt that Luke had claimed it belonged to his father, who was a Jedi. The Hutt sniffs: pfft, and you believed him? The guy continues: well he DID say he wanted to go to Coruscant and see the old Jedi Temple, and since literally no one in the entire universe would ever CHOOSE to go there unless they were at least somewhat connected to the Crazy Space Monk Order, I figured he might be telling the truth.
Luke makes a miffed face and says he doesn’t want any trouble, and the Hutt says this in return:
WOW. This Hutt is like…buff? I didn’t even know Hutts had that kind of a range of motion on their arms! Ohhhh, Star Wars. HE HAS A LIGHTSABER NECKLACE. LOL.
I Bet This Guy Owns a Lot of Unpaid Utility Bills
Luke comes to in a warehouse of sorts with the Hutt standing over him, holding something blue you all may recognize as a Jedi holocron:
He asks Luke if he knows what this thing is, and Luke says he doesn’t. Where are they right now? Why, they’re in Grakkus’ home, where he keeps a gigantic stash of Jedi paraphernalia.
Grakkus goes on: he’s not like all the other Hutts! Sure, he’s a criminal and a warlord of the underworld and blahblahblah, but he’s also a connoisseur of Jedi collectibles! Oh. So the Temple’s been looted and the galaxy’s just out there selling all the Jedi’s shit — lightsabers, those enormous statues of themselves they had to show how humble they were, what I can only assume is several thousand past due notices from the power company — on Galactic Black Market eBay. *sniffle* OK.
Force Pop Quiz
He holds up the holocron again: only someone strong in the Force can open this. So get cracking, kid!
Luke stammers — he doesn’t know how to open it! He isn’t even a Jedi Trainee, for fuck’s sake! Grakkus starts counting to five, and Luke panics. He tries to focus, tries to remember what Obi-Wan told him (which, I mean, really: WAS BASICALLY NOTHING since they were together for like 20 whole minutes before Obi-Wan fucked off to go taunt his ex-boyfriend by turning into the Force in front of him.)
ANYWAYS. Luke does indeed focus, and whaddya know? It works!
By The Time You Watch This, The Shit Will Have Hit The Fan
The holocron starts playing its contents: a bunch of Jedi masters barking out random nuggets of wisdom about lightsabers and complaining about how everyone used to be bros with each other before the “Hundred Year Darkness” came about and the Sith were born. OK: once again, Star Wars, I need CANON CONTENT about this wackiness. I want like…a TV SERIES that’s just about all the insane backstabbing drama that went on in the Old Republic or whenever the hell this is referring to. NOW.
Finally, a figure tells the viewer that if they’re watching this, the task of rebuilding is all on them now. Oh, THANKS GUYS. Like Luke doesn’t have enough to worry about. This is such a Jedi move to be like “whoever this is, even if you’re 12 or a Skywalker or whatever, YOU ARE THE LAST TRUE HOPE. So get a move on.”
The figure de-hoods herself and hey: I know her, and so do you!
So, I suppose the implication here is that she threw this together — or added onto this — just before she died at the Temple (amusingly like the third or fourth revision of “how does Shaak Ti die?” that Star Wars has undertaken.) This means that as she was recording this thing that Luke Skywalker is now watching, his father was in the background somewhere going on a murder spree. Well. That’s pleasant.
Recurring Theme: Luke Skywalker, Last Jedi Standing
The Hutt is pleased: well well well, I guess you DID know how to open this. And THAT means that you are The Last Jedi! Just like the name of that movie we haven’t seen yet! Wow, Luke’s really held on to that same job title for a LONG time. Poor guy; talk about your career stagnating. He instructs his dudes to take Luke to “the Gamemaster” (and really, just wait, the next issue here is really something because this is exactly as ridiculous as it sounds,) and declares that it’s going to be “quite a party”. Oh my!
Recurring Theme: If You Say So, Star Wars
As Han, Leia, and Sana flee the Empire on their way off wherever they were, they are having trouble getting messages out.
In the meantime, Rebellion HQ has gotten a distress signal from Nar Shadda. It’s Luke Skywalker’s astromech droid who’s placed the call! Oh no!
Poor Mon Mothma. The Skywalkers are just constantly both the best and worst thing ever in her life. She solemnly says that she just can’t risk the lives she would have to risk to send someone over there to save Luke’s reckless ass, even if he WAS the hero who blew up the Death Star.
Can I ask a question? So, Mon Mothma must have known OF Anakin Skywalker, even if it was just in passing. I mean, she was a Senator, she was friends with Padme and Bail, and Anakin was such Hot Shit in the Republic that you know she at least recognized him. Then there’s the fact that Mon knows that Bail has a Jedi friend in hiding that the two of them decide to contact, which we see happen in Rogue One. Then, out of seemingly nowhere, Leia Organa — Bail’s daughter — shows up with this guy named Luke Skywalker. Who is a great pilot and despite having no prior Rebellion Training, blows up the enemy’s superweapon. Oh and also it seems like it’s a pretty open secret that Luke has a lightsaber and that some guy named Ben Kenobi was helping him. So…I mean, Mon Mothma is a pretty smart lady. She ends up running the whole New-New Republic. She HAS to have put these pieces together, right? I mean, I’m not even suggesting that knowing Luke was Anakin’s kid or related to him somehow would change her orders here, but like…they’re not trying to suggest that she doesn’t know something was going on here with Luke’s backstory, surely? She doesn’t just think Luke is some guy who made a REALLY good shot one time, right?
Just something I’m thinking about. I mean, it’s also possible she’s never put two and two together, given that she IS a Star Wars character.
So! This issue wraps with Mon continuing: I can’t fathom what kind of brave, crazy hero would even consider taking the mission to go rescue Luke even if I WAS willing to send someone! And that’s when a certain hairy friend of ours shouts out that HE’LL answer the call:
Awwww! Chewie’s gonna go save Luke! That’s really nice! I am so proud of our little OT Crew. With that, he heads for his ship, taking Threepio along with him. Go get ’em, Chewie!
Will Luke be able to use his rudimentary Jedi Skillz to escape this latest captivity? Will the Jedi show up to dump more Last Requests on him? Will Han, Leia and Sana finish off their terrible rendition of Three’s Company? We’ll just have to find out next time — thanks for joining me, readers!