REVIEW: ‘Star Wars: The High Republic,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Star Wars: The High Republic #2

Marvel Comics, Star Wars: The High Republic #2 is written by Star Wars lore staple Cavan Scott while Ario Anindito provides art, ink by Mark Morles, colors by Annalisa Leoni, letters by Ariana Maher, and cover art by Phil Noto. Star Wars: The High Republic #2 continues the journey of Keeve Trennis as she tries to adjust to her new role as a Jedi Knight.

Previously in Star Wars: The High Republic #1,  Keeve Trennis was in the process of her completing her Trial to become a Jedi Knight alongside her master, Sskeer. While trying to complete a near-impossible task, Trennis was forced to stop her Trial to protect the Starlight Beacon. The station had emitted a frequency that had drawn a giant swarm of star-locust that were hellbent on reaching the Starlight Beacon at all cost. Trennis was able to lead the swarm away, saving countless lives but more importantly, she was awarded the rank of Jedi Knight for her valor.

Star Wars: The High Republic #2 opens with Keeve Trennis on her first official mission as a Jedi Knight. Trennis and her crewmates are set to investigate a distress call in the Kazlin System. She is joined by Jedi Knights Ceret and Terec Kotabi, who are bonded-twins who share the same mind.  They are led by Trandoshan Jedi Master Sskeer, who, despite his injuries during the Great Disaster event, continues to serve in the relief efforts. While his arm will grow back given his species, the previous issues showed that Sskeer might not be as stable as his stoic demeanor puts on.

Through Keeve’s inner monologue, it is clear that she is still uncertain about her new role as a Jedi Knight. Writer Scott and the art team provide insight into this confusion perfectly as her actions, and facial expressions exude confidence. However, deep down, Keeve is unsure if she is ready for it all. The uncertainty is only exacerbated by Master Sskeer appearing off, the presence of the famed Kotabi twins, and the fact they were too late reaching the distress signal.

As the team of Jedi searches the wreckage for survivors, it is apparent that the dreaded Nihil is behind this attack. Only Master Sskeer has had any interaction with the marauding Nihil, but their ruthlessness is known to all following The Great Disaster. Wading through the gassed vessel, the Jedi come upon a slain Hutt who was transporting the grain used to make bacta. As bacta is much newer in this time period compared to what we are used to in the Skywalker Saga, a Hutt transporting grain into Republic space is unusual, to say the least. However, they had no time to figure it out as a survivor on the craft may not be the most welcoming.  The rest of Star Wars: The High Republic #2 follows the crew of Jedi trying to make sense of the wreckage in conjunction with Jedi on the Starlight Beacon.

Overall, I am enthralled with this series only two issues in. Trennis is shaping up to be a very relatable protagonist. She is dealing with her own imposter syndrome as a Jedi Knight who tries to hide her insecurities while still performing the best that she can in the aftermath of The Great Diaster.  The introduction of new species like the Kotabi is reminiscent of Jedi Masters Tiplee and Tiplar from Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Even after decades of lore, writer Scott can inject a fresh take on species and bonds we have seen before.

Further, readers see the story of this time period expand and intertwine before their eyes. The events that led to Sskeer’s injury are mentioned in conversation and shown in flashbacks but never really explained, leading to speculations. Other Jedi that got their introduction in other media like Avar Kriss and Vernestra Rwoh are bridging gaps that can encourage readers to explore novelizations. The Hutts being involved shows that the Hutts have been gangsters for centuries and are a problem for the Republic even now. Most importantly, the Nihl continue to be mysterious and deadly. More and more demonstrate abilities that make it clear why they will be a match for the Jedi of this time. 

I am anxiously awaiting the next issue, if only to see how Scott and the art team push the boundaries of what we know about the Star Wars universe. If Star Wars: The High Republic #2 is any indication, this series is in for a wild ride.

Star Wars: The High Republic #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.

Star Wars: The High Republic #2
5

TL;DR

I am anxiously awaiting the next issue, if only to see how Scott and the art team push the boundaries of what we know about the Star Wars universe. If Star Wars: The High Republic #2 is any indication, this series is in for a wild ride.