||Another standard tale, with little
depth and little character. It is rife with inconsistencies and unlikely
situations. Nowhere in the tale is it shown that Quinlan Voss is really
interested in the Dark Side, as we will be led to believe in
he seems to be completely cured of his affliction from
The setting is Dathomir, where
Courtship of Princess Leia set the second half of its novel, and where
we are told that the Emperor feared these women. We are also reminded
that Yoda lost 14 Padawans when he went to rescue a downed ship there
decades in the past. So it is surprising to see how easily Voss deals
with these women when he finally gets tired of his slave disguise.
The women also don't act like witches.
They seem to know what they are doing with the Force. They don't need
chants to apply it, and they seem to have mastered several tricks that
we haven't seen before, like a disappearing act. The women are drawn
like sex objects, but without the sexiness. In other words, they all
have huge breasts, popping out of their skimpy uniforms, but they don't
have any sexuality, and they appear to have masks similar to that of
It seems that the witches have
discovered an ancient artifact in a temple that they have excavated. I'm
not really sure what this device is supposed to do. What coincidence is
it that a planet with a similar temple has disappeared just when the
witches uncover theirs? Did they set it off? They had no access to it
until the end. The device had some large worms as guardians, at least
that is what we are told, but we only ever see one, and it seems pretty
Voss is able to get himself transferred
to another area, where the witches have a man cutting the paws off of
native species, which have apparently devolved from the ancient race who
used to operate the star gateway. Where did these guys come from? Was
there any mention of them in
The Courtship of Princess Leia? I don't
remember, but that doesn't mean there wasn't. But they are not in my
There is a sub-plot concerning Ros Lai,
the (apparently) ugly daughter of the leader of the tribe of witches. She
is teased and poorly treated by the scantily clad women, but in reality,
she is just as "beautiful" as them. Voss discovers this by the end of
the second part of the story, but she is out for revenge for her murdered
father, who can still exist like Obi-Wan in the afterlife. Sigh...
nobody ever has mothers that they want revenge for...
Voss, Lai, and a Givin who was also a
slave, manage to steal an excavation ship and give chase to the heart of
the temple, where the leader has activated an infinity stream towards
Coruscant. Yawn... whatever that means. For some reason, his pursuers
think his ship exploded because "nothing could have survived an
explosion like that", yet the ship is still intact right ahead of them!
Don't their sensors pick it up?
Lai betrays Voss, however, and the
Givin is killed. But having been entrusted with the protection of the
star gateway (Stargate?), Voss now has the powers to control the
infinity stream, which he redirects to destroy the control room.
Somehow, he makes it back to Coruscant soon after the stream has
disappeared, even though it was to take over an hour for the stream to
reach the planet- because Mace Windu is a talking about it as if it just
happened this moment. That's some pretty fast traveling!
For some reason, Voss saves Ros Lai
from her death, and brings her to the Jedi Temple. His explanation is
cryptic and confusing. But by that time, I really didn't care much.
From what I read in
Darkness, Voss must
have gone perilously close to the Dark Side of the Force in this
chapter, but I didn't see him even get mad. He got annoyed at one point,
and was subjected to some nasty Dark Side powers (which oddly seemed
much stronger than the Light Side, since he couldn't counter them), as
well as a nasty bug that started burrowing up his arteries, but didn't
kill him -and he was cured by a potion of Ros Lai's blood. Right.
Now I really wonder why the authors
didn't make Ros Lai to be a good girl, to oppose her kin, and start a
tribe similar to the "good" one that Luke encountered in
of Princess Leia, turning the ideology of the planet around. That could
have made some interesting sub-plots.
The artwork was actually pretty good.
Very little caught my eye, though, and I'm not sure why that is. It
certainly wasn't bad, and there was plenty of background action in many
of the scenes. The colors were vibrant, and showed off the darkness of
the characters, with a moody atmosphere. Still, I missed seeing those "special effects" that I
have enjoyed in previous issues.
There was little dialog through most of
the story. Most of the narration came from mental notes from Voss
himself, which provided something a little more interesting than in
Twilight, but were still annoying because of the small grunts that we
got, like "I must do this..." or "they managed to do that...".
Still, there have been worse stories.
This one was just a little uninspiring, and boring. I am glad
that some of the future ones in this series got a little better.