Star Wars may not have a presence in theaters right now, but there's always something happening with the franchise in the comics. In fact, Marvel Comics has been quietly loading up the Original Trilogy with all sorts of lore in what could be described as the new version of Shadows of the Empire. No, it hasn't added Dash Rendar, at least not in the capacity in which he was involved in the original story.
While Marvel's Star Wars comics haven't given us a lot of Han Solo replacements, there have been some moments that undeniably enhance the universe and are worth looking into if you're a fan. Here are some of those moments if you're not the comic book reading type and just like the information, though that may change after reading some of these reveals.
Vader Finds Exegol
Following the events of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, the Emperor was pissed at Darth Vader. His failure to turn Luke Skywalker resulted in the Emperor nearly killing Vader, then abandoning him on Mustafar to fend for himself. Not one to give up or create a paradox by dying, Vader managed to repair his body on Mustafar, and in an improbable twist, took the fight back to the Emperor. This search for his master inevitably led Vader to a place previously unknown to fans until The Rise of Skywalker: Exegol.
Darth Vader attempted to kill the Emperor with a giant space beast, but Palpatine struck it down rather easily. It's there Vader saw his master's enhanced power, as well as a bunch of clones and what appears to be Luke's hand. Fans have complained that the number of ships already shown constructed on Exegol makes the Emperor look dumb for not using them during Return of the Jedi, but honestly, I like the connection to the sequels and think it's totally on-brand for the Emperor to make a terrible decision.
Qi'Ra Stole Han's Body From Boba Fett
If you watch the original Star Wars trilogy, Han Solo is frozen in carbonite in Cloud City and later delivered to Jabba The Hutt by Boba Fett. It stands to reason that is largely still accurate, though a ton of things happen between that exchange. Most notably, Boba Fett is forced to find a merchant who can repair Han's chamber after it starts to malfunction, and it ends up being stolen from his care. Later it's revealed to be in possession of none other than Qi'Ra, Han's old love interest from Solo: A Star Wars Story.
As some may remember, Qi'Ra ended up working for Darth Maul, who ran the powerful crime syndicate Crimson Dawn. Obviously we know Qi'Ra won't keep Han's body indefinitely, but her re-introduction in the midst of the Original Trilogy has created a fascinating level of depth to this era and another avenue for new stories. The new series announced for the character will certainly be worth reading for fans hoping for a Solo sequel, though the existence of this story may mean we won't be getting one.
Padme's Lookalikes Are Alive
A lot of Anakin Skywalker's pain is complicated, but I think it's fair to say Padme's death drove him over the edge. So when Vader stumbled upon someone who looked exactly like Padme in his adventures, he was shocked. At least, I think he was shocked, and facial expressions are hard to distinguish when he's wearing the helmet. Alas, he eventually learned she was one of Padme's body doubles, who also hung out with the rest of Padme's body doubles and rebelled against The Empire.
The Amidalans, as they were called, weren't too kind to Darth Vader. He spared them all the same, but paid dearly for the show of mercy by the Emperor. It's a goofy Star Wars story that almost borders on the line of fan fiction, though in its defense, it does a better job of showing Vader's overall disdain of the Emperor and his attachment to the life he had before his transformation.
Luke Gets A Yellow Lightsaber
Luke lost his blue lightsaber in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, and by Return of the Jedi, he was wielding a green one. As we learn from Marvel Comics, there's another lightsaber in the mix. Luke comes into possession of a yellow lightsaber after being led to a Jedi outpost first established during The High Republic era on Tempes, but acquiring the lightsaber was not quite so simple as picking it up and leaving.
Instead, Luke was confronted by the spirit of the Grand Inquisitor. Yes, the same Grand Inquisitor from Star Wars Rebels had his spirit trapped for eternity by Darth Vader on Tempes to serve as a trap for those who arrive. It's a cruel fate to make the lost soul of the Grand Inquisitor the security system of some obscure temple people will rarely visit, but perhaps that's what makes the Sith so cruel. It was also wildly inefficient, as Luke was able to defeat the spirit and return on his way with the yellow lightsaber, which was probably one of the few reasons anyone would visit. Star Wars Rebels villains really deserve much more than they've been given.
Leia Gets An Imperial Rival
Princess Leia doesn't get a lot of time to shine in the original Star Wars trilogy, minus when she tried to save Han and murdered Jabba The Hutt. In Marvel's Star Wars stories, we see more of her being a leader of the Rebellion and doing what she can to try to keep hope alive in the Rebel Alliance in a relatively dark time. It's no easy task, especially with someone like Ellian Zahra breathing down her neck.
Zahra is an Imperial commander who trained under Grand Moff Tarkin. She ultimately blamed Leia for Tarkin's death, and as such, made it her personal mission to make Leia suffer and pay in every possible way. It would stand to reason that given the events of Return of the Jedi, Zahra won't get the chance to exact vengeance, though I personally love the story and how it gives Leia more to do.
Luke Names Rogue Squadron In Honor Of Jyn Erso And Others
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is a fantastic movie with lots of potential for other stories, but sadly, things don't shake out so well for its main characters. The good news is that we're getting the prequel series Andor, and the comics have also retroactively acknowledged the noble sacrifice made by Jyn Erso and her friends.
There's not a ton to the story here beyond the fact that Luke named Rogue Squadron in part to honor the noble sacrifice made by the Rogue One team. Maybe it's less of a reward than the Rebellion ultimately being successful thanks to their mission, but it's still cool all the same.
Those looking to read what's going on with Star Wars in Marvel Comics can visit their local comic store or get a subscription to Marvel Unlimited. Or just continue to read CinemaBlend, because we love to cover stuff like this or the lesser characters of the franchise who deserved more screen time.
Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.
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