Thursday, January 26, 2012

1032 BBY: Knight Errant: Deluge

Every time I read John Jackson Miller I enjoy his work a little more than the last.    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’m a fan of JJM’s contributions to the Star Wars cosmos. 

In Knight Errant: Deluge, JJM gives his readers yet another compelling antagonist, one even more captivating than Daiman: Zodah the Hutt.  This Hutt is like no other we’ve come across in the Star Wars universe.  Zodah says as much to Kerra Holt in their final confrontation in issue 5:
               “I’m like no Hutt you’ve ever known, human.  I enjoy field work – getting my hands dirty.”

And how! 

Zodah bellows this declaration to Kerra Holt before the two engage in combat.  Equipped with a suit of armor outfitted with jetpacks, and clutching a Mandalorian battle axe, Zodah the Hutt prepared to ‘get his hands dirty’ with Kerra Holt’s blood.  In the final confrontation, Zodah turned off the artificial gravity on his ship to even the playing field as he and Holt engaged in one-on-one armed combat.  It’s a truly unique and original scene: a Hutt and a Jedi floating through the bridge of a large ship, one swinging an axe, the other swinging a lightsaber.  Knight Errant: Deluge is worth the price of admission on the merits of that scene alone.

This final scene was only one of many which placed a Hutt in an unusual circumstance.
Though I started my post with the epitome of what Zodah the Hutt has to offer in these pages, there were other awesome scenes like this scattered throughout the 5 part series, the most disarming of which was Zodah’s introduction.

In the opening pages of Deluge, Zodah the Hutt is leading an aerial attack on one of the planets controlled by Odion.  What is remarkable about this scene is that Zodah is in his own starfighter.  Seeing a Hutt at the controls of a starfighter, his large mass squeezed into a cockpit, is quite funny.  But this Hutt is not one to be trifled with.  His initial assault into Sith space was not only successful, but once he took control of Odian’s territory he then demanded tribute from the various Sith leaders (re: cousins).
Remarkably, Zodah would have been successful in his efforts to control Sith space were it not for the efforts of Kerra Holt and some of her allies from Republic space.  In a great twist, it’s Kierra who comes to the rescue of Daiman’s worlds, as she saves the citizens of Darknell (Daimen’s capital city) from destruction by the hands of Zodah. 

Zodah the Hutt is now my favorite Hutt in all of Star Wars.
Even though Zodah the Hutt is what I got a kick out of the most in this series, there were other aspects of this comic arc worth mentioning as well.  Kerra received some great character development, as she is starting to become a Jedi I admire.  Building upon what I said the last time I talked about Kerra, she’s moved from an exclusively revenge driven martially focused Jedi, to a Jedi on a humanitarian mission to save the downtrodden trapped in Sith space. It’s this humanitarian ideal which brought her back to Damian’s planet to save his citizens, themselves only helpless victims in a war of the 1%’s making.

On a different note, I missed Beadle Lubbon and Jarrow Rusher from this story.  I thought they were going to be more permanent characters in the narrative of Kerra Holt, but they were notably absent.  That’s too bad; I got a kick out of those guys.

I really haven’t much else to say about this title.  Like all of JJM’s work I really enjoyed it.  The story was great, and the art was well done.  I look forward to the next series.

Maybe you all can help me out with regards to what my next post will be.  Do I move to the recently published comic series Star Wars Jedi: The Dark Side, which explores the relationship between Qui-Gon Jinn and his first Padawan, Xanatos, or do I read Darth Plagueis? I think its Darth Plagueis I move to next, but I’d rather get a few other opinions on that before I get started on it.

Until then my friends, may the Force be with you.

15 comments:

  1. After reading Darth Plagueis, I have two things to say about it:
    1) It's one of the best Star Wars books I've read
    2) It references almost everything before TPM (and spoils many of them to people not familiar with them). And I mean almost everything, from Cloak of Deception to Tales of the Jedi to Episode I adventures.

    Most of the spoilers are in the third part, set in years before TPM, but since you want to read it in one piece, I'd suggest doing it in its last timeline placement, just after the movie. Yes, that would put it after all the adaptations and children books, but I think you'd enjoy it better then (since it really ties many sources together).

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  2. I agree with Lugija, it should probably be read after TPM to avoid spoiling all the other stories.

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  3. Done Deal.

    So taking my post "Handling 32 BBY" into consideration, should I read Darth Plagueis after TPM novelization?

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  4. Also, where would I squeeze in The Tenebrous Way?

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  5. I haven't read Darth Plagueis yet (waiting for the paperback), but from what I've heard you could read it anytime after TPM. So it's really up to you whether you'd like to read it after the film, or after the novelization, or the comic adaptations, or all the adaptations.

    As for "The Tenebrous Way," I'm not sure whether it takes place before or after the Qui-Gon/Xanatos comics. It's set during the second chapter of Darth Plagueis, but since I haven't read the novel, I'm not sure when that chapter takes place. I've read "The Tenebrous Way," though, so I know it can be read independently of the novel.

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  6. You should review SWTOR or the Qiu Gon comic.

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  7. Hirogen,
    Yes, I'll be taking a look at the Qui-Gon comic next. As for a review of SWTOR, I'm not sure I'll be able to delve into it the way I would like to - like I did with KOTOR 1 and KOTOR 2. The problem is that it's an MMO, and basically unending.

    The truth of the matter is that I've cancelled my subscription to SWTOR for the time being. It came down to what I'd rather spend my free time on: SWTOR, or the Star Wars Chronology Project, and I decided to stick with my blog and finish what I started.

    Maybe one day I'll do an in-depth post on SWTOR, but to do the way I'd like to do it would mean I'd play through all eight class stories, run all flashpoints, and complete all quests. Not an impossible task, but time consuming in the extreme for sure.

    Plaristes, as for The Tenebrous Way, I think I'll read it after the Qui-Gon series. So where do I plug in the new Darth Maul story? Would it be after The Tenebrous Way?

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  8. The Tenebrous Way is set completely in 67 BBY, and the Qui-Gon comic in 53 BBY. The Darth Maul story Restraint is in 39 BBY (according to forums).

    So much new ground-breaking stuff. Luckily I don't yet own Shadow Hunter or TPM novelization, so I can get the short stories without having doubles.

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  9. Thanks Lugija, that's good to know. So I won't be looking at the Qui-Gon series next, I'll be reading The Tenebrous way, followed by Vow of Justice.

    Vow of Justice is a source I missed when I was going through the 60's BBY timeline.

    In review: before I get to where I stopped ay 33BBY, I'll be reading

    The Tenebrous Way
    Vow of Justice
    Star Wars: Jedi: The Dark Side
    Restraint

    Then back to the path of correct chronology.

    PhD directors, check my accuracy please ;)

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  10. Looks good to me!

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  11. Yep, it's good. Carry on. :)

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  12. Ok directors, here's another: Where does The Wrath of Darth Maul fit into all this?

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  13. It's all over the map. It has scenes from when Maul is only three years old, and then scenes every few years until he's a teenager, then covers material from TPM, and to top it off it has a framing story from during the Clone Wars. I figured you'd handle it like the other biographies and simply discuss the whole thing when you reach the time of its framing story.

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  14. Ok, that's good to know. Is its framed story sometime in the Clone Wars then?

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  15. Yeah, the frame story is sometime during the Clone Wars. We don't know when exactly during the war, though. Hopefully the upcoming TCW episodes with Maul will help us nail that down.

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