Review: Star Wars #16

Star Wars 16 banner

Writer: Jason Aaron
Penciler: Leinil Yu
Inker: Gerry Alanguilan
Colorist: Sunny Gho
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
Cover Artists: Jerry Dodson & Rachel Dodson

Darth Vader’s accomplice Doctor Aphra has been captured by the Rebel Alliance.  Unfortunately for them, she is not one to go quietly.  She is being transported to a secret Rebel prison in direct orbit of a star.  This prison is supposedly the safest place in the galaxy and no one has ever been able to escape.  Aphra is looking to change that.

Star Wars 16

Star Wars #16

The book opens with Aphra continuously breaking out of her cuffs and fighting against the Rebels that are holding her prisoner.  She is definitely proving to be more than they expected.  It’s unclear how much she learned from Darth Vader and how much is just her own skills picked up over the years.  Either way, she is making it as difficult as possible to keep her contained.

It feels very weird for the Rebels to have this secret prison hidden in deep space.  They mention how even most of the Alliance doesn’t know the place exists.  The existence of the prison feels much more like an Imperial idea than one for the Rebels who talk of freedom and individual rights.  I’m sure the creators are making some kind of commentary, but it’s not completely clear what they are trying to say here.

Aphra talks a mean game, but once they arrive at the prison she doesn’t do much.  It’s not clear if she knows about a plan to free her or is just assuming that Vader would be coming after her.  It’s an interesting idea that she is not going to the Rebels to hide from Vader.  She seems to be very clear on the fact that Vader would have no problems killing her once her usefulness has run out.  It’s possible that she is scared of Vader that she will talk a big game to the Rebels in order to make them afraid of her, as much as she is afraid of Vader.

An attempt is being made to infiltrate the prison.  Mercenaries have attacked and boarded, but we don’t know if they are there to save Aphra or kill her.  Nor do we know who is behind the mercenaries.  The book ends with the prison siege just beginning.

Jason Aaron has written a good story that raises a lot of questions and discussion about the idea of a secret prison.  Leinil Yu is the new artist on the book and he gives the book a fresh look.  Sunny Gho’s colors are working overtime to give us the orange and yellow soaked pages to show what it is like so close to the sun.

While most of the story is focused on Leia and Aphra, there is a brief story of Han and Luke gambling away their supply funds, it doesn’t really go anywhere, but I’m sure it will be expanded upon in the next issues.  This issue opens a new storyline and I’m very curious to see where this goes and what is going to happen with the secret prison.

4/5 Kath Hounds

4/5 Kath Hounds

About the Author

Paul joined the EUCantina staff in 2012, combining his love of Star Wars and his obsession with comic books. He has been a Star Wars fan since the early 80's and is always finding a way to tie Star Wars into every facet of his life. Paul lives in Virginia. He loves movies, plays guitar and is TK-5990, a proud member of the 501st Legion.