War of the Bounty Hunters Issue 3 by Charles Soule

When Darth Vader crashes the party and claims Solo as his own, he not only angers the Hutt Cartel, but insults Sly Moore who is at the auction as a representative of The Empire. He also manages to kill a number of gangsters and battles Qi’Ra who is bested by the Sith Lord. As Luke approaches ‘The Vermillion’ to help his friends, Vader senses his presence and speaks to him through the Force, telling Luke he must surrender or Vader will kill Han.

As Vader lays claim to Han, Lando, Leia and Chewie silently take on Boba Fett who, during the fight with the Wookiee uses his flamethrower but luckily Lando sacrifices his cape to put Chewie out.

At first glance, for me, this issue felt like a bit of filler, possibly tying a bunch of issues together in an attempt to extend a story for one of them, but on my second read through I quickly put an end to that opinion.

This issue has some great Easter Eggs, my favourite by far is the conversation between Vader and Qi’Ra as they fight. Vader comments on how he recognises her fighting style, and how she later mentions how she thought she knew how to handle Sith Lords, a great nod to Darth Maul and a hint to some sort of encounter between Palpatine’s former and current apprentices.

Another well placed reference is a nod to Boba Fett’s past where he has hunted Wookiees before when he shows the Wookiee hair braids on his armour to Chewbacca, an obvious ploy by Fett to antagonise Chewie even more than he already is. However (and I say this away after rewatching ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’) I would have loved to see some of Chewie’s fighting skills as shown during the Kessel escape sequence.

Whilst the issue was good fun, other than the Easter Eggs, nothing else jumped out at me in terms of memorable moments, except for this one above, where Lando tells Chewie to beat Boba Fett’s ass. Is this typical Star Wars dialogue? Not really. Was it well done? Actually yes. Whilst it came as a surprise to me, especially coming from a seasoned Star Wars author like Charles Soule, it was well placed in terms of context. Now I’m no prude, listeners to the podcast can even point out my cursing (I try not to but sometimes it skips out), but I think in terms of language, even as tame as “ass” is, it’s kind of jarring when it’s used in Star Wars media. I find it really noticeable when Finn called Hux a “murdering bastard” and Poe says “big ass door” in ‘The Last Jedi”, just because I’m not used to hearing it in Star Wars.

But dank farrik, the characters can shout kriff and karrabast to their hearts content.

Come back tomorrow for my review of “War of the Bounty Hunters” Issue 3.

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