Hold on to your lightsabers Padawans, Star Wars is going into 2021 strong. Star Wars has their hyperspace coordinates set to 200 years before the Skywalker Saga. Star Wars: The High Republic is a brand new massive inter-connected storytelling adventure from the House of Mouse and it’s off to a fun start.
To dip my feet into the High Republic I started with Marvel Comics Star Wars: The High Republic #1. Writer, Cavan Scott has done a great job setting up the story alongside art by Ario Anindito and ink by Mark Morales. It’s pure fantasy fun and feels like a fresh more playful take on Star Wars.
In the opening scenes we meet Padawan Keeve Trennis who is currently training with a Trandoshan Master named Sskeer. Sskeer has one arm at the time of us meeting him and is cool as a cucumber. It’s incredibly refreshing to see a jedi that is not a human right out of the gate. On top of that, we really haven’t seen many Trandoshans in the Star Wars universe and especially not ones who are Jedis.
Keeve herself is a wonderful new character and having her introduced at the cusp of her knighthood, is a brilliant storytelling choice. She’s full of personality and seems like the perfect blend of awkward and badass. She certainly likes to swear. She also is overly excited especially when meeting other Jedis. Can you blame her? I’d be stoked to meet them as well.
Overall the story is pretty self contained and is really more of a teaser than anything else. For those reading the other High Republic media, this takes plast right after the events of Charles Soule’s Light of the Jedi (Which is next on my reading list) and hours before the dedication of the Starlight Beacon. The galaxy is recovering from The Great Hyperspace Disaster that destroyed countless lives as starship debris ravaged the Hetzel system at lightspeed.
We see Kreeve training with Sskeer in her Jedi Trials wielding her sweet double-bladed lightsaber that can be broken into two separate blades. Her impossible seeming task is made all the more difficult with the local insectoids called Ximpi, buzzing in her ear. She also meets a sidekick of sorts with Kanrii who provides some of the comedic relief.
While Kreeve tries to pass her test we are introduced to Jedi Master Avar Kriss, who is one of the main heroes in Light of the Jedi, Kessurian Jedi Estala Maru as well as Jedi Grandmaster Veter. The latter sharing a title with none other than Yoda himself.
Dialogue is all together brief, but there’s plenty of action and set up in this first issue. It showcases a wide range of characters and sets the tone of the series. I’m very excited to see where the series goes next and to learn more about our new heroes. The last few pages really have my mind racing and thinking about what’s next.
Star Wars: The High Republic #1 is available now wherever comics are sold.