Writer: Cavan Scott
Art: Ario Anindito, Mark Morales and Frank William
Letterer: VC’s Ariana Maher
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: November 9th, 2022
Last issue, a mystery figure used the dark side to stop Jedi Knight Vildar Mac’s heart, leaving him temporarily dead. This issue, in Star Wars: The High Republic #2, Vildar and Padawan Matty Cathley go in pursuit of the mysterious cloaked figure, searching for him amidst the busy streets of the holy world Jedha, and along the way, Vildar realizes there’s far more to the Force than what he’s spent his life learning.
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The High Republic era of Star Wars is a rich universe for stories, it’s a time of (mostly) peace and exploration. Jedi are plentiful. Some of them fight injustice across the galaxy as others board exploratory ships to assist in discovering and mapping new areas of the galaxy. Jedi Vildar Mac is a middle-aged Jedi and not as interesting as other Jedi that have popped up in High Republic era stories.
Star Wars: The High Republic #2 continues the current storyline which takes place on the world of Jedha, a crowded metropolitan world full of pilgrims and religious acolytes of different faiths, many of them studying the Force or their own version of the Force. It’s a great setting and in this issue, we get some nice contrasts between the Jedi religion and other religions.
My problem with Vildar is that he’s WAY too emotional and full of rage for a Jedi whose been studying the Force for 50 years. When Luke lashed out in the original Star Wars trilogy or Kyle Ren lashed out, it was understandable, because they were both young men who were still wrestling with mastery of the Force and their emotions. But Vildar should have more self-discipline.
Padawan Matty Cathley seems to have more control than Vildar does. She’s a fun character, not overly spunky and since she’s lived on Jedha most of her life, she’s familiar with all the local rules and customs that Vildar seems determined to stomp all over.
The second half of the issue reveals the mystery attacker from last issue and deepens Vildar and Matty’s search for the missing religious artwork. This part of the issue is much more interesting, with a surprise reveal and a thrilling cliffhanger ending.
Ario Anindito, Mark Morales and Frank William’s artwork on Star Wars: The High Republic #2 bursts off the page, with several varieties of aliens and the skyscrapers and vehicles of Jedha all making the story more layered and deep.
The main characters are very expressive and the panel layouts are dynamic.
Star Wars: The High Republic #2 is a good continuation of the story, with a good plot but a mediocre main character in Jedi Vildar Mac. Still, it’s an interesting story set on one of the more beautiful Star Wars worlds.