GONK reviews one of this week’s Star Wars comics: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #2. What are Kir Kanos and Mirith Sinn up to this time?
Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #2
Big spoiler, Kir Kanos fans! In the second issue of Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost, Kir Kanos doesn’t do a whole lot. He goes to his room, and puts on some old clothes. Because this issue is about the other characters of the Empire Lost storyline: Mirith Sinn, personal security to Chief of State Leia Organa Solo, and the introduction of some more of the cast of the story: Feena D’asta and Gilad Pellaeon, Nom Anor, and Kir Kanos’ mysterious host in the restored Empire.
After the first issue that brought out Luke Skywalker, Boba Fett, and Vima-da-Boda, we get to see more of the players on the Imperial side of things – only there’s more than one Empire it seems. The action starts with a black ops raid on a weapons dump to steal a lump of material, and continues with an assault on the Organa household on Coruscant. Mirith Sinn and the Noghri get to kick some butt – and Sinn shares a secret with her boss that leads to some hugging. Meanwhile we see a little tension between where the Imperial Remnant is headed, and where the Supreme Commander wants to take the restored Empire.
Since there were even more players to add to the cast before starting everyone on a collision course for mayhem, it makes sense for Kir Kanos to sit out most of his issue while new characters get their scenes in the spotlight – but this makes it feel like this is still part of the opening act, and this story is now one-third over. Perhaps there are too many storylines at work here? Still, I’m confident that Mike Richardson and Randy Stradley’s story will bring these different plots together and into conflict soon enough.
Paul Gulacy’s art captures the feel of the story – flowing back and forth from the fast paced action in the initial raid to the character-focused scenes with General Vota and the Supreme Commander and back to more action and more dialogue scenes. Michael Bartolo’s colors shine best in some of those faces, like with Admiral Pellaeon. There’s a single page panel devoted to Mirith Sinn’s flashback secret, which seems cool… but a little out of place, like someone thought “you know what this comic needs? A whole page pic of this character for coolness’ sake.” The random chaos that Nom Anor incites was also pretty neat and gives a sense of him as the infiltrator trying to turn hearts and minds away from the New Republic, while also having other plots afoot. Leia switches roles from the first issue – no longer the charming politician, she is the worried mother woken in the night by a squad of assassins breaching her residence.
There are some cool details in this issue – I enjoyed seeing a Gungan senator working late in the palace, and the modified Imperial logo used by Kir Kanos’ secretive host, and the smarminess of General Vota (maybe it’s just his thin moustache that makes him look smarmy). And seeing Noghri in action. I do wish that the Noghri weren’t just generic nameless guards – you’d think that Mirith and Leia would know some of their names.
Overall, while Kir Kanos mostly sat this one out, there’s still plenty of stuff going on to keep you interested – both on the action and on the intrigue angles. Now with the players in their places, it’s time for some revelations and the tension to rise. Why was Kir Kanos recruited – is he going to be a figurehead and link to the Empire’s past glory as the last Imperial Guard? or is he wanted for his one-man army talent? Hopefully, next time!