The third part of this run doesn’t follow on from last issue, instead we jump back in time again to the planet Arkanis and tell the story so far from Ochi’s point of view.
Vader sends Ochi into a bar where the assassin obtains a Crimson Dawn invitation. The two then meet with Bokka and replay the scene from the first issue of the run but from different angles.
Once they leave, Vader speaks of Bokka’s plans to betray Jabba before hanging Ochi out of a hatch in the bottom of the Lambda Shuttles cockpit. Vader drops Ochi but the ship was close to the ground. Vader orders his companion to find out who the Hutt is working with.
That night, Ochi sets up a trap where two soldiers get dropped off incognito but Ochi blasts the two of them. He asks about Bokku and learns that Bokku is working for Crimson Dawn and the two soldiers are actually a hell of a lot more.
They attack Ochi who holds his own. The gangsters aren’t phased by his allegiance with The Empire. The fight stops and one of the members offers Ochi to join them instead of working for Vader. All of the time Vader is watching, this is a test for the assassin to prove his loyalty.
Vader lands his shuttle nearby the fight, Ochi doesn’t accept the invitation and the rest of the Dawn soldiers attacks him and he manages to kill the rest. Vader approaches him and Ochi proves himself to the Dark Lord as more of Crimson Dawns military approach and surround the pair.
Getting more backstory into Vader’s journey to Jakara is something I didn’t think I wanted really. Getting more time with Ochi of Beaton was also something I did t think I wanted, seeing as I wasn’t a fan of the character in the previous arc. Having Vader and Ochi putting the pieces together to find out who is behind the scenes of this huge plot is something I did want and we got that in droves here.
Greg Pak has taken Vader’s story from Soules mini-series and run with it, expanding on what could be seen as two one-note appearances and given some real depth to the journey. And whilst I enjoyed Vader’s moments in the main story of this crossover, the back story here is making those moments stand out just a little bit more. And now that Vader is facing off with Crimson Dawn, it makes his fight against Qi’Ra stand out that little bit more as well after he and Ochi will obviously be making short work of her followers in the next issue.
Unfortunately though, Pak is falling back on reusing scenes, this time straight from one of the previous issues of this run, which feels remarkably redundant, surely an editors note would have sufficed here?
I hope that we get to Jakara in the next issue though. Getting some backstory is good but I’m ready to get caught up with the main story soon.
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