Ossus Library Index Star Wars Timeline




A graphic novel by Kevin J. Anderson and Dario Carrasco (1996, Dark Horse Comics)
Book 6 of Tales of the Jedi
3996 years before Star Wars: A New Hope

After recruiting several Jedi to their dark cause, Ulic and Exar attack Corsucant, Onderon and the Jedi library on Ossus.



2+ stars+

Read September 8th, 2002 for the second time  

A disappointing sequel. It had the power to be great, but instead had a strange focus, plus the art was not as good as in the previous installment.

As I mentioned below, from my first time reading the book, it was very complete and well thought out. I could see where some of the setup from the last book came to fruition here. But a lot of the battles won by the Sith didn't make sense unless the Jedi were stupid, cowards, or the Dark Side of the Force is stronger.

I have no idea what Mandalore is supposed to be doing, except acting as a mercenary thug. I suppose the authors are trying to portray the origin of Boba Fett, except that we don't know where this Mandalore came from. He first attacks the Krath, and asks Ulic for a duel. I never understood why Ulic agreed to all the measures that were taken against him, in order to provide a "fair fight". If it was man against man, then one has the power of the Force and one doesn't. Maybe he has other abilities, like Jango Fett (for a time), but what kind of honor would it be, to beat a man like Mandalore wanted to do? And then Ulic throws down his weapon so he can fight with Mandalore's weapon. Doesn't make sense. But Ulic wins, and gets a loyal ally after that.

Exar Kun, meanwhile, goes to the Jedi Library on Ossus, and convinces twenty Jedi students to join him, with false promises of more knowledge than their masters have, all for the light side of the Force. And he kills another master and steals the Sith holocron. When they reach Yavin 4, Kun smashes it and the spirits of some old Sith enter into his students. Huh? What just happened here? More magic, which I railed against in the last book. And that isn't what a holocron does! It also makes their next acts, murdering their own masters, less effective, because they are not themselves. While we got a nice slow buildup in Dark Lords of the Sith towards the Fall of both Ulic and Kun, it is disappointing here to see mindless followers. And how are these mindless followers able to defeat their own masters? Are they more powerful?

It seems that they are. After stealing a fleet of brand new ships and foolishly attacking Coruscant, Ulic is captured by his brother Cay, and Nomi Sunrider. During his trial, where he is sentenced to death, Exar Kun walks right in, frees Ulic, kills what seems to be the chancellor of the Republic, stands speaking of his own greatness for a while, and then kills Master Vodo. During all this, the guards and senators are held in a Sith trance. But the Jedi are not- and they stand watching this happen as well! Between the three Jedi, they could have overpowered Kun before he did more damage. And it appears that Kun is more powerful than his master, as he defeats Vodo the same way he did in the previous book. Vodo doesn't use a lightsaber, even in such a dangerous battle. What would have happened if he had? Why does it have to be one-on-one all the time...

The next battle comes on Ossus. Aleema, a cipher in this book, really, is given command of a ship to lure the Jedi defenses away from Ossus, so that Ulic and Kun can loot the place. She takes the cat-like Crado with her, and they destroy three Jedi ships before causing a supernova. It was unintentional on their part, but because she betrayed Ulic (when he was captured), the Dark Lords made sure she died. Crado on the other hand, was seduced by Kun, and I don't believe it at all. He was not infused with Sith poisons like his fellow Jedi. He just worshiped Kun. He even tried to kill his mate, which is why she went after Ulic in Redemption.

Ulic fights his brother on Ossus, as the Jedi are trying to evacuate in light of the shock-wave from the nearby supernova. Strangely enough, the shockwave can travel faster than the speed of light. The one in Star Trek Generations was much more realistic- the planet would have been blown apart, not just all life extinguished!

But Exar Kun loots the Jedi Library, though it seems that he left a lot of stuff behind, and he claims that they have everything they need. Hmm. Ulic, however, kills his brother, and breaks into tears. Nomi, in a rage, uses her newfound powers of casting a giant wall of light, and imprisons Ulic inside it, removing his powers of the Force altogether -good or bad. This doesn't fit with the dichotomy of powers we saw in the last book. Good Force users can do good stuff, evil ones can do Dark stuff. Here, in a rage, Nomi projects a Light Force power. Contradictory, but I like the implication better.

Ulic's will drains, and he leads them to Yavin 4, where the Jedi fleet projects a sheet of light onto the planet, devastating all the dark power there. And then they turn around and leave! Instead of investigating, or destroying the temples! Why is that!?! What kind of logic are they using? Kun could have survived that conflagration even if he hadn't removed his spirit from his body. And I wonder about his chief Massassi. Is that the creature from the Marvel comics, which we meet in In Deadly Pursuit? Or was there another beast in the Jedi Academy trilogy that I've forgotten about? In either case, how did it live so long?

On Onderon, for some reason, Mandalore fights to capture the planet for Ulic. I guess he wants a familiar home base. But the beast riders fight them off with help from the Republic fleet. We are led to believe that a new Mandalore will sire generations of Mandalore's, who will eventually become Boba Fett, I suppose.

The story in its entirety was nowhere near as good as the previous book. This one contradicted so many ideas and themes from the previous book that it's hard to believe that the same authors contributed. I notice, however, that the main author from the last book, Tom Veitch, is not present here, and that could be the difference. Anderson is not a great author; though he has some great ideas, he has trouble communicating them in a passionate and reliable way.

The artwork was still good, but nowhere near as good as the beginning of the first part. There was a lot happening, but it was very diffuse, in that so much of it was not a completed image. Layout and color schemes were not as impressive in this installment, either.

A lot of things didn't make sense, and didn't do a lot of what we saw in Dark Lords of the Sith. The most interesting part of the previous book was the path to the dark side. Now that the characters have arrived, all we get is war, which is much less interesting. As much as the artists tried to make it more personal, it wasn't. Maybe it could have been much more -maybe not. But a lot of it was just not all that interesting.



4 stars

Read March 29th to 31st, 1997  
    Once again, the story was complete and well thought-out.  But again, I think the dark side is given too strong an edge.  But if the light side can rule the galaxy, then why can't the dark side rule for a while?  And didn't Palpatine do the same thing in this era?  The book also sheds some light on a particular sequence in Dark Empire II; I still disagree with the death of yet another master in that book, though.  

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