STAR WARS #28
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Salvador Larroca
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Release Date: 1/25/17
In the third installment of Yoda’s Secret War we find the Jedi Master venturing further into the heart of the mountain in an attempt to learn its secrets and learn more about the stonepower. We also see how Yoda and Ben Kenobi’s stories guide Luke in the present day.
Plot: After being banished to the heart of the mountain by his captors, Yoda learns more about what is hidden in its depths. He also meets an ally who can teach him how to use the stonepower and then makes a shocking discovery about its origins. In the present day, Luke finds a clue to the whereabouts of C-3PO and R2-D2 with the help of Ben Kenobi’s old journal.
Story: Given that this issue is almost entirely about Yoda, it’s not exactly that surprising that the story moves a little slowly. In fact, for a lot of the panels there isn’t much going on at all. The very silence that pains Yoda in the mountains is the same silence that pained me as a reader. The amount of panels devoted to Yoda just walking up the mountain was enough to make me want to put the issue down.
We also get very little Luke Skywalker or Ben Kenobi in this issue. While the recurring symbol ties all three stories together, the connection still feels a little weak. The man approaching Ben Kenobi in the market made little sense. Where did he come from? He is the same boy who is teaching Yoda about the stone power?
The scenes where Yoda meets the banished adults, who reveal they are not lost but choosing to stay in the mountain to escape the war outside, also seem to serve little purpose. It doesn’t add much to the world building of this planet, other than to maybe give Yoda someone to talk to after a few panels of complete silence.
The highlight of the story is watching Yoda become the apprentice. This isn’t a role we’re used to seeing him in, and makes for an interesting dynamic.
Art: The cover, while a little misleading since it makes it seem like Luke is the focal point of the issue, is beautifully done in showing how the stories of the three Jedi – Luke, Obi-Wan and Yoda- are all intertwined despite happening at different times.
The panels inside the heart of the mountain, with full black back-drop emphasize the power and mystery of the blue stones. They almost glow off of the page with their vivid blue coloring.
Edgar Delgado’s coloring also adds depth and movement to the cave scenes, playing with the shadows created by the fires and dim caverns. Given the sense of mystery around the heart of the mountain, it seems fitting that so much of the interior is obscured by shadows. The reader’s uncertainty over what they’re seeing mirrors Yoda’s own journey to the truth.
The scenes with Ben Kenobi felt out of place in comparison, and were drawn with much less detail. In fact, mostly you’re just looking at the backs of heads in those panels which feels like a missed opportunity in a galaxy where even scene fillers can come in all different shapes and sizes (and species).
Verdict: Story-wise, this issue was mostly forgettable. While Yoda does make an interesting discovery in the mountain and the issue ends on a cliffhanger, his journey could have been condensed to quicken the pace of the storytelling. The mystery Jason Aaron has built around this story makes me want to continue reading, but I’m hoping the next issue has a little more action.