Another issue, another planet! Zayne Carrick is reluctantly helping to fight a war on the planet Halthor, but this time it’s for the Mandalorians! After being captured last issue with Captain Morvis, Zayne and his not so close friend find themselves on the front line with the only other choice being imprisoned as a slave for the Mandalorians. I think Zayne said it best himself that it’s pretty unusual for someone to help invade two planets in one week for two different armies.
The issue was a little bit light on the action once the beginning battle was over. We are introduced to the Devaronian Mandalorian whose child Zayne saved in the last issue. This issue kind of shows you how the Mandalorians operate during the war if you’re not too familiar with them. First off, Mandalorians take prisoners either to make them work as slaves or to fight for them in battle. This leads to the fact that Mandalorians are not just humans, but a mixture of many species. Being Mandalorian is not only based on race but more on the culture itself. Not to mention that was is their way of life. You come to see that the Devaronian that Zayne helped last issue, Ko Sornell, has her entire family in the war zone with her including husband, son and infant. Crazy bunch of buggers.
Nothing was more interesting than the concept of Jedi Knights siding with the Mandalorians in the war. I thought Dorjander Kace was pretty cool in the last issue but he kind of lost some credibility at the end of the last issue when he revealed that he and his Jedi followers were “Mandalorian Knights”. They all wield the same yellow-orange bladed lightsaber which reminds me of the Imperial Knights from the Legacy Era comics where certain Jedi follow the will of the force as guided by the will of the Emperor. This is the same concept except I’m not sure exactly what kind of code these Mandalorian Knights follow. Dorjander Kace explains that he and his Jedi joined the Mandalorians to balance the fact that the Jedi were entering the war against the Mandalorians. This idea kind of gives me a newfound respect for Dorjander Kace, even though I can only see him falling to the Dark Side eventually while fighting for such a brutal army. He is simply arguing as the Jedi council did against the Jedi entering into the war against the Mandalorians and he believes that the Jedi shouldn’t be fighting a war for a “corrupt” Republic. And after Revan and his Jedi joined in the war, Dorjander is just trying to balance things out. He almost reminds me of Dooku during the Clone Wars and it almost seems like this war is something the Jedi did not learn from and is repeated during that war. Only time will tell if Dorjander’s intentions are pure.
I give the issue 4 out of 5 grizzlies. It just about followed the same pace as the first with a battle at the beginning, story in the middle and a cliffhanger at the end, but I’m completely fine with that. Zayne is going to have his hands full with Dorjander revealing that there is to be a mass invasion of Phaeda, his home planet and where his family and “girlfriend” live. Is his girlfriend Jarael and does that mean we may get to see her in the upcoming issue? I sure hope so.
And on an artistic note, I’m really starting to take a liking to Andrea Mutti’s pencils in the series thus far. Her art has the right tone for this storyline with her gritty feel and attention to detail. I hope she stays on board at least for this first story arc and I wouldn’t complain if she stayed on after either. Stayed tuned for issue 3!
First off, yes this review is extremely late, but it’s hard to keep up with all of the Star Wars comics out there nowadays. You’ve got a couple of them following the now red hot MMORPG ‘The Old Republic, one taking place amidst the comic underexposed New Jedi Order/Vong War era and there’s even a few that take place during, a little before and a little after the Original trilogy timeline. It’s a lot to take in I know. But one that I’ve been waiting for and had actually almost forgotten about until I saw it at the comic shop was Knights of the Old Republic: War. This isn’t an Old Republic online game tie-in though, this takes place before and continues the story of wayward Jedi Zayne Carrick that author/comic writer John Jackson Miller started back in 2006.
The series took place before the events of the first Knights of the Old Republic Xbox videogame, chronicling the adventures of the fugitive Jedi “washout” Zayne Carrick who witnessed the deaths of his classmates at the hands of their Masters who were trying to preempt the return of the Sith. As Zayne struggles to avoid his crazy ass Master Lucien and his band of psycho Jedi, he runs afoul of corporate criminals, an essence transferring Sith Lord, Mandalorians and not to mention the two most notorious Sith Lords of the time: Darth Revan and Darth Malak. This is of course before they have fallen to the darkside and before the Mandalorian Wars have truly been unleashed upon the Republic. At this point in time the Mandalorians are simply stockpiling resources from their plundering of the Outer Rim worlds and gauging the Republic’s military prowess in skirmishes here and there. Darth Revan, know at this time simply as ‘The Revanchist” is busy recruiting Jedi eager to step in against the Mandalorian aggression in the Outer Rim, including Jedi Knight Alek who is soon to be jawless Sith Lord Darth Malak.
As KOTOR: War begins we are finally able to get a glimpse of the era directly before the events in the video game, where the Mandalorian invasion of the Republic is in full swing and Zayne Carrick once again finds himself unwittingly drawn into the conflict. I’m hoping the series will show us more of Revan and Malak, possibly leading up to their fall to the darkside and the final battle of the Mandalorian Wars at Malachor V, which by all accounts is pretty epic. The issue itself was pretty decent. Zayne Carrick is just kind of hard not to like. He’s the good hearted hero without being a complete tool about it and still accomplishes to be kind of a badass. The story picks up on the planet Essien where Zayne explains through narrative that he was drafted into the Phaeda militia, Phaeda being the planet where Zayne was born and his family resides. As fate (or the force) would have it, Zayne ends up under the command of a certain man named Morvis… yes it’s the douchebag who made Admiral from the first volume of KOTOR. The issue is big on action, the planet Essien not being very unique in any way as of yet. There is also the introduction of a new Jedi character named Dorjander Kace, who I found to be pretty cool, though by the end nothing is as it seems with him or his little group of Jedi.
The art was decent for this issue, but I’m definitely missing the art of guys like Dustin Weaver and especially Brian Ching who did a good amount of issues from the first volume. But that is not to take anything away from Andrea Mutti because she’s a fine artist. I definitely can’t wait for the next issue to get some explanation for the last page of this current one. Also, I’m all for the introduction of new characters but I’m sure that there are more fans than me out there wondering what happened to Jarael, Gryph, Rholan and Camper. Did Camper stay out in Wild Space with those stupid exo-gorths? Did Rholan ever find out anything about the truth behind the current war as he intended to? Time will tell as KOTOR: War continues, though we may not get answers anytime soon. I give the issue 4 out of 5 grizzlies because it’s off to a promising start. And check out the picture below the rating for a glimpse at the next issue. Ridiculous!