Monday, April 5, 2021

Star Wars Comics: Classic Star Wars #14-16, Tales of the Jedi #2-4

Tales of the Jedi was the first of many Star Wars projects for artist Chris Gossett.  Beyond comic books, he has provided art for several video games, including Apocalypse and Pitfall 3D: Beyond the Jungle.

My Recent Reads

Classic Star Wars #14
Originally published November 1, 1993
Reproduction of a comic strip from 1982
Writer: Archie Goodwin
Artist: Al Williamson
In-Story Timeline: 0 ABY
  • Revenge of the Jedi continues.
  • Admiral Ackbar has a brilliant plan: the Imperial skimmers who pursue the Rebels are lured across the same lake where the Millennium Falcon is trapped.  The "worm beasts" which dragged the Falcon to the bottom of the lake release it in order to attack the skimmers instead.  
  • The Mon Calamari bring the Falcon back to the surface and the good guys escape.
  • Doom Mission begins.  The story ran from January 24 - April 17, 1983.
  • While preparing to leave Yavin IV to establish a new headquarter base on Hoth (non-canon), the Rebellion is launching fruitless attacks on Darth Vader's new battle cruiser.
  • General Dodonna's young, handsome son Vrad volunteers to lead the next mission, armed with the power gem attained a few arcs ago to penetrate the cruiser's defenses.  Luke is assigned to be Vrad's backup pilot.
  • The problem: Luke believes that Vrad ducked out of the previous attack, faking damage to his own ship to cover his desertion.
  • Luke confronts Vrad and the two brawl.

Classic Star Wars #15
December 1, 1993
Reproduction of a comic strip from 1983
via Amazon

  • Doom Mission continues.
  • Vrad admits his guilt to Luke in the midst of their brawl.
  • Luke wins the fight, without even going all Jedi.  Vrad pulls a blaster on him but backs down in the end.
  • On the mission, Vrad weasels out again.  He maroons Luke on a remote planet, then goes to cut a deal with the Empire to spare his life in exchange for the power gem.  
  • Fortunately, Han was wise to Vrad and was tailing them in the Falcon.  He rescues Luke.
  • Vrad has a change of heart and turns hero at the last minute, carrying out the mission to pierce the battle cruiser's shields.
  • In sacrificing himself, Vrad left an opening for Han to attack with the Falcon and damage the cruiser enough to delay the Imperial attack on the Rebel base.
  • Race for Survival begins.  The story ran from April 18 - July 10, 1983.
  • With the Empire closing in, the Rebels must evacuate Yavin IV and head to Hoth (non-canon).
  • After taking off himself in his X-Wing, Luke learns that General Dodonna, now grieving his son, ducked out of his transport at the last moment.

Classic Star Wars #16
February 1, 1994
Goodwin/Williamson and Allen Nunis
  • Race for Survival continues.
  • While the Mon Calamari attack the Imperial fleet to provide cover, the Rebels make their escape from Yavin IV, heading to Hoth.
  • Luke is leading the main fleet while Han tests an alternate more dangerous route.
  • Han's leads past a solar flare and even he isn't crazy enough to recommend they try it.  But Leia chooses it in the end anyway.

Tales of the Jedi #2: Ulic Qel-Droma and the Beast Wars of Onderon, Part 2
November 15, 1993
Tom Veitch/Chris Gossett
In-Story Timeline: 4,000 BBY
  • The Nebulon Ranger crash lands in the Onderon wilderness.
  • We learn of Tott Doneeta's special Jedi superpower: he can communicate with animals.  Tott convinces some Boma to take the Jedi to the Beast Lord Modon Kira's citadel.
  • Turns out, Princess Galia staged her own abduction.  Ulic, Cay and Tott stumble upon Galia's wedding to Oron, the Beast Lord's son.
  • During the wedding banquet, Modon explains that all in Iziz is not as it seems.  The royal family has been under the influence of the Dark Side of the Force for 400 years.
  • Modon plans to attack Iziz and he wants the Jedi's help.  Ulic advocates for a more diplomatic solution.
  • That fails and the Beast Lords attack.
  • After some back and forth, the Beast Lords win with unexpected help from Master Arca.  Dark power is driven out of Queen Amanoa, though Arca warns that the danger has not entirely passed.

Tales of the Jedi #3: The Saga of Nomi Sunrider, Part 1
December 1, 1993
Veitch/Janine Johnston
In-Story Timeline: 3,999 BBY
  • New story, new protagonist: Nomi Sunrider.
  • Nomi is married to a Jedi Knight, Andur.  They have a daughter, Vima, and a protocol droid, A-3DO.  Noma and Vima are also Force-sensitive.
  • Andur's teacher, Chamma, sends the family to the Stenness system to deliver Adegan crystals to Jedi Master Thon.
  • Along the way, Andur is murdered by minions of Bogga the Hutt bent on stealing the crystals.
  • Nomi, who has to this point been reluctant to pursure Jedi training, picks up Andur's lightsaber and fends off the goons, killing two of them.
  • Nomi and Vima complete the delivery to Thon, though not before mistaking him as a mere beast of burden for Oss Willum who is actually Thon's apprentice.

Nomi, Vima and Thon via Wookieepedia

  • Thon is an important revelation for the franchise: not all Jedi are humanoid! Thon is a Tchuukthai.  

Tales of Jedi #4: The Saga of Nomi Sunrider, Part 2
January 18, 1994
Veitch/David Roach
via Amazon

  • After ignoring her for several months to allow her to grieve, Thon finally takes up Jedi training for both Nomi and Vima.
  • Nomi accepts the training but with the understanding she will never use a lightsaber again.  She is still haunted by those she killed in the previous issue.  As she points out, Thon doesn't use one.  Why should she?  Thon asserts that it is likely her destiny to use one but accepts her condition for the time being.
  • Meanwhile, elsewhere in the system, an ore hauler is attacked by pirates led by Finhead Stonebone.  Unfortunately for the pirates, Bogga had been hired for security and his minions quickly capture the pirates.
  • Brought before Bogga, Finhead is coerced to take over the never completed job of stealing the Adegan crystals from Thon.


  1. Now I really want to find all of my Star Wars comics!

    1. Yes, they've been fun. I'm not prepared to say they're objectively better than the best Marvels I've read. But, my emotional connection to the characters and their galaxy is stronger.