Marvel‘s Star Wars comics are one of the best lines of comics on the market today. They brilliantly tell new stories while expanding upon a world that’s over 40 years old. What works so well is the comics are able to fill in the gaps of the stories we’ve already been told. They weave in and add new details and depth that entertains, gets us to rethink what we’ve seen and read, and also never fails its original material. Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha kicks off that sort of story and launches an event decades in the making.
At the end of Empire Strikes Back, Boba Fett had gotten his bounty with Han Solo encased in carbonite. In the films, the next we saw them was in Jabba the Hutt’s palace. The bounty was delivered and we’d guess that Boba Fett was paid his bounty. But, what happened between Cloud City and the Hutt palace? Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha starts to tell that story and it’s not as straightforward as we’d expect.
Charles Soule has the awesome job of weaving the story of Boba Fett’s journey to deliver the goods. What we find out is it wasn’t as easy as we might have thought. Fett is good but when there’s enough credits on the line, others will want to get in on the action. Plus, technology can just crap out on you. And that’s where Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha begins things. The carbonite that Solo is encased in doesn’t quite work as we thought and there’s issues forcing Boba to make a stop to fix things, otherwise Solo will die. That stop creates a sidequest and opens things up for the cat and mouse chase for the bounty.
Soule does a solid job of adding in depth to the world of Star Wars. He also uses some great callbacks in Boba’s story. There’s references to Attack of the Clones as Boba must battle in an arena that will make fans smile. It also adds a bit to Boba’s story as he’s clearly traumatized in some ways about what he witnessed happen to Jango.
Soule also has a difficult task ahead. We know that Solo was delivered to Jabba. We also assume Boba Fett is the one that did it. So, how do you tell an interesting, entertaining, and new story when we know the end result? Well, he’s pulling that off by throwing obstacles in Boba Fett’s path.
Steve McNiven’s art is fantastic. The details are great and there’s some subtle choices, especially around Han in the carbonite, that really add to things. Laura Martin‘s colors make the pages pop and Travis Lanham‘s lettering adds an emotional punch. The overall package is wonderful with some great action and emotion. Boba Fett might be behind a mask but you can feel his frustration at times by his body language and the lettering. It’s impressive to pull off.
As a long time fan of Star Wars, Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha is exactly the type of story I want to read. It expands upon the world we know adding to it and not discounting what has come before. It’s additive. It’s also a hell of a lot of fun with great action and humor with some fantastic pacing. Though it looks like this crossover event is pretty expansive, if it keeps up this quality, I’m going to wish it was even longer.
Story: Charles Soule Art: Steve McNiven
Color: Laura Martin Letterer: Travis Lanham
Story: 8.5 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.65 Recommendation: Buy
Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
Purchase: comiXology – Kindle – Zeus Comics – TFAW