Sunday, December 31, 2017

Modern Marvel: Star Wars #20 (12 Days of Bounty Hunter Covers)

In Star Wars #5, Luke Skywalker returns to Tatooine with the hope that Obi-Wan Kenobi left something behind that will teach Luke more about his destiny as a Jedi.  At Obi-Wan's home, Luke is attacked by Boba Fett who he fights in Star Wars #6.  By the end of Star Wars #6, Luke has defeated Fett by subconsciously using the Force and has recovered the Journals of Ben Kenobi.  The writer, Jason Aaron, has used the Journals to tell several standalone stories about Obi-Wan's time on Tatooine.  These standalone stories have appeared in Star Wars #7, 15, and 20.  Additionally, a longer tale about Yoda found in the Journals was told in Star Wars #26 - 30.

In Star Wars #20, Jabba the Hutt hires bounty hunter Black Krrsantan to find out who defeated some of Jabba's men during The Great Drought, an event that happened almost a year earlier and was chronicled in Star Wars #7.  Black Krrsantan heads to the Lars homestead, which is the nearest inhabited location to the incident, and kidnaps Owen Lars.  Luke Skywalker, who has run away from home, senses a problem and returns home to find his battered aunt Beru Lars who tells him what happened.  Beru asks Luke to hide while she goes to get help.  Meanwhile, Krrsantan has drags Owen out to the desert and begins hurting him, which draws the attention of Ben Kenobi.  Ben confronts Krrsantan and they fight.  Krrsantan is successful in ensnaring Ben in a net and Owen attacks him, but Krrsantan throws Owen off a cliff.  Ben uses the Force to blind Krrsantan with sand, uses his lightsaber to free himself from the net, Force pushes Krssantan away, and spies Owen hanging onto an outcrop on the cliff.  By keeping Krrsantan blind during the conflict, Ben Kenobi is able to keep his Jedi background a secret.  Before Ben can help Owen, a blind Krssantan attacks with a giant boulder which Ben slices in half, leaving a gash over Krssantan left eye.  The fragments of the boulder tumbles over the cliff, knocking Owen off the outcrop.  Ben uses the Force to levitate Owen, but the blind Krssantan continues to lash out at Ben.  Just as Ben loses his concentration and Owen begins to fall, Luke Skywalker, piloting his Skyhopper, rescues Owen.  Ben turns his attention back to the blind Krssantan who tumbles off the cliff.  Away from danger, Luke exists his Skyhopper and races to a grateful Owen who gives Luke a hug.  Black Krrsantan, disgraced, leaves Tatooine without completing the job.

Star Wars #20a - Marvel Comics, U.S. (June 2016)
The action packed cover artwork is by Mike Mayhew, who also pencils the interior.  The interior artwork is very detailed while the cover is less so, perhaps due to a different inker.  The bounty hunter Black Krrsantan has several cover appearances in Marvel's line, having been introduced in Darth Vader (2015) #1 and appearing semi-regularly in the Doctor Aphra title.  This story explains the large scar over his left eye.

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