Like my last review of Legacy vol 1, this is my third read through of Shards (having re-read them both when vol 3 Claws of the Dragon came out) and I continue to be pleased by how often I find myself catching new things or rediscovering things that I didn’t remember from prior readings. I’m building on my reviews each week back and forth between Legacy and Knights of the Old Republic, so as to line up the reading of Vector in the proper order, and finish up around the release of the final KOTOR volume, Demon. So, if you’d like my take on what are ultimately scattered glances at the Star Wars galaxy in the Legacy time period as shown in Shards… you know what to do.
Shards begins by taking us back to the days just before the Jedi Academy at Ossus fell (in the opening arc of Legacy). Here we see the machinations of Nyna Calixte as she attempts to both use and outmaneuver Emperor Fel, the Sith, and her lover (the Moff/Admiral) Veed into positions she can use for her own gain. Knowing what future revelations are in store for this character has me analyzing closely all her earlier appearances. Fel accuses her of being the first one in contact with the Sith, bringing them on as Allies in secret. That alone is an interesting twist – but when she realizes that the Sith have no intention of putting Veed on the throne in Fel’s place, she helps Fel plan his escape, so that he might continue to be a distraction for the Sith while she decides upon her next move. This is an excellent start to the volume, giving extra information to the reader on scenes that we were already familiar with.
I’ve got a strong fondness for Noob, the second tale in this volume – despite the name. The art has a very gritty feel, which is fitting for this tale about a new Stormtrooper recruit to the 407th Joker Squad under the Sith Empire. These troopers are being led by Darth Maleval on against insurgent troopers under Fel’s Empire at the planet Yinchorr. This story has the feel of a United States Civil War story, with brother fighting brother, and the new recruit proving his mettle in battle, as well as his devotion to his squad. I’d like to see more of this squad (and this artist) again in the future.
Which brings us to Trust Issues, where Darth Maladi tasks Nyna Calixte with hunting down Cade Skywalker for Emperor Krayt. Nyna reactivates an old spy of hers, named Morrigan Corde – who follows a lead that showed Cade’s last known location on a spacestation called The Wheel. It just so happens that the Sith have sent their own spy (Torlin) to the same location – but when they discover that Fel’s Empire and the Galactic Alliance are meeting on the wheel to discuss forming an alliance against Krayt’s Empire – the two spies work together to bring the peace process to a crashing halt. By the end, Morrigan has tracked Cade back to Ossus – but in her final scene it’s revealed that she can’t bring herself to complete her mission, because Cade is her son. I enjoy this story, but I’ve got mixed feelings on the art. How the women could look so beautiful and all the men so ugly has me very confused. I like that Morrigan is shown not as a 6’ tall model, but as an average sized woman, shorter than the men around her. We also get to see a little of the fallout that Imperial Knights Draco and Krieg will face for disobeying their Emperor in going to rescue his daughter in the previous comic arc. This is a very strong middle ‘act’ for this volume.
I’ve never quite liked Trust Issues, though. The opening nine pages seem to have nothing whatsoever to do with the rest of the story, save as an attempt to show how cruel Dark Kruhl is. Due to the Imperial Knights’ intervention on Marasiah’s behalf, the Sith have learned that Fel now controls Bastion. So, Darth Kruhl is sent on a mission to kill him, under the guise of a diplomatic mission headed by a former Governor under Fel’s Empire who arrives at Bastion to offer the services of his fleet. But Fel sees right through the ruse, besting Darth Kruhl in lightsaber battle – and ultimately killing everyone in the fleet except for the former Governor, who’s sent back as a warning to the Sith. I’ve always felt this was a fantastically extreme reaction – Fel kills the thousands of men who manned these ships, but keeps alive the man who betrayed him? Now maybe this is who this character is, but it seems off to me.
Finally in Ghosts, we catch back up with Cade Skywalker on Ossus – where he’s visited by some ghosts from his past, both alive and dead. He decides to complete his Jedi training, discovers a treasure trove of Jedi antiques being guarded by Yuuzahn Vong, and ultimately realizes that while he may not be the one to reunite the Jedi Order – he can no longer just stand by while the innocent Jedi he gave to the Sith (back in Broken) is tortured because of something he did. Meanwhile, the Sith have captured Syn and Blue – planning to use them as bait to lure Cade to them. It’s all a wonderful setup for the next volume of Legacy which I’ll be reviewing soon, The Claws of the Dragon.
- Star Wars: Legacy Vol. 1 – Broken (mibreviews.com)