Monday, April 12, 2021

Star Wars Comics: Tales of the Jedi #5, Classic Star Wars #17-19, Droids #1

David Roach, artist for Tales of the Jedi #5, is based in Wales.  He got his start with a self-published fanzine called Hellfire in the late '80s.  In addition to Star Wars, he has worked on such titles as Batman and Judge Dredd.  Beyond comics, he has illustrated several books for Dungeons & Dragons.

My Recent Reads

Tales of the Jedi #5: The Saga of Nomi Sunrider, Part 3
Originally Published February 1, 1994
Writer: Tom Veitch
Artist: David Roach
In-Story Timeline: 3,999 BBY
  • Thon begins Nomi's Jedi training.  She still refuses to learn to use a lightsaber.
  • With the help of a holocron, he teaches her the history of the Force.
  • Finhead Stonebone and his goons arrive, intent on stealing Thon's adegan crystals for Bogga the Hutt.
  • Thon surrenders to them but telepathically convinces Nomi to use the Force - and the lightsaber he gifted her - to fight them off, freeing Thon.
  • Thon says the holocron prophesies that Nomi will be a great Jedi.

Classic Star Wars #17
March 1, 1994
Reproduction of a comic strip from 1983
Archie Goodwin/Al Williamson
In-Story Timeline: 0 ABY

  • Race for Survival continues.
  • Luke gets the Rebel fleet safely past the solar flare but his use of the Force to do so draws Darth Vader's attention.  He knows it's Luke and for the first time, at least in the comic strip, he reveals that he is Luke's father.  (Bear in mind, not news for the readers, even at the time.  Empire had come out three years before.)
  • The Paradise Detour begins.  The story ran from July 11 - October 2, 1983.
  • After running past the solar flare, the Millennium Falcon must stop on an apparently uninhabited planet for repairs.
  • Except it's not uninhabited.  When Luke goes to check things out while Han and Chewie fix the ship, young Skywalker runs into an old friend, Tanith Shire!
  • But when he chases after her, he discovers she's another woman entirely, S'ybll.  Then she runs off and when Luke runs after her, he runs into the Night Beast instead.
  • Something weird's going on here...

Classic Star Wars #18
April 1, 1994
Reproduction of a comic strip from 1983
  • A Paradise Detour continues.
  • S'ybll is a witch, one with shape-changing powers.  In a Grimm-esque tale, she attempts to coerce Luke into staying with her so she can drain hm of youthful energy for herself.
  • When he resists, she resolves to kill him, intending to entrap his rescue party - Han and Chewie - instead.
  • In the ensuing duel - S'ybill taking the form of Darth Vader - she is exhausted of energy and finally dies.  Luke is able to escape.
  • A New Beginning begins - ha!  The story ran from October 3 - December 25, 1983.
  • The Rebels set up their new headquarters on Hoth.
  • The Millennium Falcon is a late arrival because of the detour.  It appears they were followed out of hyperspace by a strange ship - an obvious cause for concern if the new base is to remain a secret.
  • As the issue closes, Han, Luke and Chewie head out to confront the trespasser.

Classic Star Wars #19
May 1, 1994
Reproduction of a comic strip from 1983

via Wookieepedia

  • A New Beginning continues.
  • The intruder is an old friend of Han's, Raskar.
  • Raskar makes no secret of the fact that he intends to claim Jabba the Hutt's bounty on Han unless our smuggler friend can make him a better offer.
  • Wishing to draw attention away from the new Rebel base, Luke concocts a plan: convincing Raskar that Han has stashed his reward money from the Rebellion on Hoth.
  • Held at gunpoint, Han takes Raskar and his goons down to Hoth where they crash land in an icy chasm.  
  • Our adventurers dig their way out through a cavern, where they discover something bright and shiny. 
  • We don't know what it is yet.

Droids #1: The Kalarba Adventures 1
April 1994
Dan Thorsland/Bill Hughes
In-Story Timeline: 5.5 BBY
  • We join Artoo and Threepio in a time before their encounter with Luke Skywalker and friends.  They live in the Kalarba system with the Pitareeze family as hired guardians of young Nak.  They are much abused by their mischiveous charge.
  • As much as I love R2-D2 and C-3PO, I'm not a fan of stories which focus on them.  Regular readers may recall that the droid stories were far and away my least favorite episodes in Clone Wars.  As such, I did not go into this issue with high hopes.
  • And yet, it's not terrible.  Mind you, I don't think this is a series I will follow any further.  Historically, those in charge of marketing the franchise see the droids (and also the Ewoks) as an easy in with younger kids.  The human lead is usually a child, in this case Nak.  The tales rarely hold up much interest for adult readers, nor do they seem intended to do so.  As keen as I always am to explore the galaxy far, far away, I don't think droid stories are the way I want to do that.
  • I am a little curious about the .5 part of 5.5 BBY but not curious enough.


  1. I think I have Droids #1. I don't think I ever read it.

    1. There's really no reason you should. Again, it's not terrible. But you know how I feel about the droids.