||I was rather disappointed with this
story, and wasn't impressed with the artwork, either.
Obi-Wan and Anakin have defeated Asajj
Ventress so often now, that having her pop up alive after her last
encounter with Anakin is a poor cheat. When this story begins, Anakin
believes he has killed Ventress in their fight in On the Fields of
Battle, but Obi-Wan knows in his heart that she is still alive. The
story follows Obi-Wan on his quest for information on her whereabouts.
As characters later say, no wonder he is falling into traps, when he has
harassed all of the Separatist and bounty hunter information brokers
The opening pages show Obi-Wan navigating
a scum-filled planet-scape with people shooting at him. I was not very
interested in seeing Obi-Wan with a Quinlan Vos attitude. There is
enough of that in the Quinlan Vos stories.
It seems that Anakin and Padmé's secret is
not really a secret. There is a lot of conflicting information between
the stories. In Dark Rendezvous, Obi-Wan doesn't seem to realize that
the girl Anakin wants to meet on Coruscant is actually Padmé. In
of the Sith, nobody knows about their relationship, but Obi-Wan figures
it out by the end. Here, though, Obi-Wan says that every Padawan knows
where to find him in his time off. It would have been nice if the
various authors got together and figured out what they wanted their
characters to know at what point in time. As this story takes place six
months before Revenge of the Sith, this must be when Padmé gets
Obi-Wan enlists Anakin, though both of
them are supposed to be on leave, to help him prevent an assassination,
thinking it will be Ventress. Although they are waiting for days for the
merchant ship to arrive, they suddenly say they are too late, when the
ship finally does arrive, and there are droids all over it, adrift in
space. When did that happen? On board, they find not Asajj Ventress, but
Durge. I guess he wasn't killed by Boba Fett in Hunted. I guess if all
the explosives Anakin ignites on his body don't kill him, a few thermal
detonators wouldn't do him in, either. He seems to be self-regenerating.
However, Anakin forces him into an escape pod, and uses the Force to
push it into the nearest star.
The information Obi-Wan found led him into
a trap, with Durge as the main adversary and a fleet of battle-droids
waiting in case he failed. However, Bail Organa happened to arrange to
be in the outer rim at the time with a battle cruiser with Mace Windu
and a bunch of other Jedi who were in the outer rim at the time. After
the rescue, Obi-Wan leads them to another planet, which is surrounded by
a Separatist fleet. Anakin pilots the battle-cruiser so that it exits
hyperspace between the fleet and the planet, but crashes the ship much
as he would in Revenge of the Sith. Is that a cheap rip-off, as the
comic came out just before the movie?
On the planet, more Jedi die, the result
of Obi-Wan's Obsession with Asajj Ventress. But we find Ventress,
General Grievous and Count Dooku, all together. Ventress is in a bacta
tank, which she bursts when Obi-Wan seems to take pity on her. When did
that turnaround happen? He was intent on killing her moments before.
There was nothing sinister in having her hanging in a bacta tank, excapt
possibly for the probes embedded in her body. Were they trying to turn
her into a Grievous-type? In the ensuing battle, Grievous kills Adi
Gallia, Grievous is hit by some heavy machinery (which might account for
some of his wheezing in Revenge of the Sith), and Dooku abandons
Ventress, having one of his droids shoot her as she is being baited by
Obi-Wan. Once again Obi-Wan feels pity for her, having been abandoned so
many years ago and giving in to hate. After being abandoned again, she
still tries to kill Obi-Wan, and Anakin deals her a seemingly-mortal
Now everyone, including Obi-Wan, thinks
Ventress is dead, but we find out in the last page of that story that
she went into a Sith healing trance. She orders the morgue ship she is
on to a remote place, out of the way of civilization. I don't see how
that was necessary. I hope we don't see her again...
The second story in the collection is a
very short one, and doesn't have a name, but it is a direct continuation
of Obsession. Upset that Dooku and Grievous escaped from their previous
encounter, Obi-Wan and Anakin find another of Dooku's citadels. He likes
to live grand, this Count. However, this is also a trap. After trudging
through the jungle from where their ship crashed (again), they find the
citadel is filled with battle droids! There is no Count Dooku to be
found. Somehow they face down more droids than in the stadium in Attack
of the Clones, where dozens of Jedi died, and survive. They manage to
face down three destroyer droids as well, before their backup arrives to
take them away.
From there, because they seem to be
targeted personally with so many traps, their next mission will take
them into the heart of Cato Neimoidia, to the Labyrinth of Evil.
The artwork in the two stories was very
different, but neither was particularly to my liking. I liked the level
of detail in the first one, but not the way the overall characters were
drawn. Perhaps that is the problem with drawing characters who are
already so familiar. I also liked the level of color detail and
brightness in the second story, but not the vague outlines and lack of
detail. I suppose I can't win... There were some very nice sequences,
though, like when Anakin was facing Durge.
My interest in Star Wars comics is waning,
so that could be part of why I was not so taken with this story. I
didn't find that it added much to the characters, though it finally
establishes the end of Durge. It would have been nice if it also saw the
end of Ventress, to bring some sort of conclusion to her story.