Will old loyalties really change in this week’s Star Wars comic: Crimson Empire III? GONK takes a look and reports in as Kir Kanos and Mirith Sinn take on the Empire!
Crimson Empire III #5 hits the comics rack today from Dark Horse (after being delayed by a week from its original Feb 29 sell date), ramping up toward the conclusion of the ‘Empire Lost’ story arc. Big spoiler: Luke Skywalker, piloting the ship containing the super explosive material away from Coruscant: not dead!
Meanwhile, Mirith Sinn, representing the New Republic, and escorted by Kir Kanos, goes to a secret meeting with emissaries from Admiral Pellaeon’s Empire — only to be ambushed by Devian’s stormtroopers. With his envoys for peace negotiations attacked, a betrayed Pellaeon masses the fleets for war on Coruscant. Can Kir Kanos and Mirith Sinn stop Devian’s plan to bring the New Republic and Empire? And Devian has a secret fleet of ships, ready to stab in the heart of one of his enemies, but who’s first on his list?
The story builds well, though perhaps gets pulled in too many directions – we’re tracking a bit too many sets of activity: Luke & Leia on Coruscant, Kanos & Sinn on their journey, Devian and his forces, Pellaeon and the Imperial leadership, General Solo with the fleet, Captain Ndigo and his NR forces. Lots of dialogue as the different sides learn bits of the pieces of the puzzle, and try to respond. With a major military engagement seemingly likely, is the plot too big for Kir Kanos and Mirith Sinn, who are now playing in an ensemble cast instead of being the leads? While going for epic stakes, Randy Stradley and Mike Richardson perhaps have moved away from the heart of Crimson Empire: Kir Kanos, loyal Imperial, armed with a shiny blade and his complicated relationship status with Mirith Sinn.
Paul Gulacy’s art is consistent throughout – lots of dark eyes and skin details on the characters, which works on the scarred Kanos and Devian, but I’m still not sure about Luke and Leia. And amazingly, Pellaeon has less lines than Han Solo. And Basdor – he’s a scary dude reminiscent of Vigo the Carpathian. But where Gulacy shines most (besides putting his scruffy characters in shadow) is in his action sequences: Kir Kanos gets some great scenes stopping the ambush on the remote mining world, Rebel forces get a few panels invading Devian’s base, and Devian’s fighters and cruisers ripping apart their foes.
Final note: One of Pellaeon’s emissaries is named Zam Basdor? Maybe that’s who Darth Vader was looking for on board the Tantive IV: “If this is a consular ship, then where is Zam Basdor?” Maybe the Mofference has a Zambassy…