Doctor Aphra…you are an irresponsible and troublesome woman.
If Luke got his own team of supporting characters—why can’t Vader? Meet the beautiful & talkative Dr. Aphra, who’s basically Indiana Jones mixed with Han Solo. We encounter Aphra in an Indiana Jones-styled storage to attain an ancient technology called the triple-zero matrix. Aphra eventually gets trapped by curator Utani Xane, who tells her that the ancient technology she’s looking for has been quarantined for centuries in this planet called ‘Quarantine World III’. Darth Vader, however, suddenly appears in the scene to save the day. Aphra and Utani wrestle over the matrix, which drops below the platform. Aphra manages to save the matrix, only to find herself hanging on her dear life on the edge of the platform. Vader offers his hand to rescue, and discussions begin over at Aphra’s ship.
Vader tells her that he was impressed by her recently destroyed, reactivated droids (referring to the droids in Issue 2), to which Aphra thanks him for. Dr. Aphra later tells him she’s a rogue archeologist. Aphra asks him as to how he found her, only to be replied with silence as the comic illustrates Vader seemingly kill people to find out where Aphra was. Aphra figures she didn’t want to know anyway and continues to tell him that the triple-zero protocol personality matrix spoke a language no one knew, and that it’s code-locked. Darth Vader then unlocks the code with ease through the use of the force, which Aphra figured would take her hours to break into.
She later sets up the two droids, 0-0-0, or Triple Zero, a protocol droid specialized in etiquette, customs, translation & torture, and Enter Dr. Aphra. BT-1, a specialized assassin droid disguised as an astromech that’s entirely homicidal. Calling it as another activation survived, Aphra continues to tell Vader that tall, dark, & able-to-kill-her guys made her nervous. Aphra finally asks her what Vader wanted from her, only for Vader to tell her that he needs private resources, as the time of having an army at his call has passed. He tells her he needs troops of unquestioning loyalty, to which Aphra answers that she knows a droid factory back in Geonosis. When asked regarding his feelings for the planet, Vader quickly denies any feelings regarding the planet. And so they move to Geonosis immediately, Aphra telling Vader she won’t let him down. Vader replies, saying, “Wise, Aphra. That would be a mistake.” Then the comic ends.
It’s quite fun to know that Vader had his own ragtag team of sidekicks. Not much happened in this issue, but it does introduce a new set of characters, who I believe will play a large role in the coming Darth Vader, and hopefully other Star Wars titles. My favorite moments where when Vader would just become silent as he was too busy recalling distant memories. Aphra is awfully talkative, but it makes up for the lack of thought and talk of Vader. Also, it’s good to know where all the remaining droids from the prequels I-III went to in Episodes IV-VI! Some are used for security and apparently, some are rotting in factories. The art (pencils & colors included) just looks unfinished when a character’s face is focused on!
Anyway, the next issue looks like a lot of fun. Can’t wait for that one.