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Republic #50 The Defense of Kamino

Cover: Patrick Blaine, Batt
Editor: Randy Stradley
Released: 02/26/2003

Reviewed by: JF Boivin (12/12/2004)
[Read Scott Chitwood's review.]

SUMMARY:

Having heard of the Separatists' plans to attack the cloning facilities on Kamino, the Jedi dispatch a task force led by General Kenobi to hold off the enemy ships while the Republic fleet awaits to ambush them. The Kaminoans unleash the ARC Troopers against the droid army. And A Mon Calamari leader risks his life in a misguided effort to end the Clone Wars. This issue is comprised of three stories by different artistic teams, presenting the battle from three separate angles, so I will review it in the format I use for Star Wars Tales.

Note: StarWars.com had posted a story titled Kamino Under Attack that includes a dramatis personae, and Wizards of the Coast had an entry for the ARC Trooper with RPG statistics.


[final cover]


[preview cover]


"Brothers in Arms"
Story: John Ostrander
Pencils: Jan Duursema
Inks: Dan Parsons
Coloring: Joe Wayne
Lettering: Digital Chameleon

THE STORY
A touching story where Obi-Wan muses on his relationship with Anakin. He realizes that since the war begun, they haven't had time to discuss possible issues. He confides in Quinlan Vos (who's reprensented by a hologram, and if you've read last issue you would understand why.) Meanwhile, Anakin brifly talks with Ayla Secura. Then they all board their Jedi Starfighters and try to hold off the invading droid starfighters and troop transports. Being the first story, this is the one where the defense plan is laid out by the Jedi Council members. It has some exposition, but then it's all action. It's nice to see Master Tsui Choi, the diminutive Aleena Jedi who first appeared in Jedi Council: Acts of War. I hope we see more recurring characters from the Expanded Universe.

THE ART
Once again, the duo of Ostrander and Duursema is a winning combination. This part of the story has a lot of action on water, and it would be hard to distinguish the setting with a similar planet like, say, Naboo, especially when they are attacked by a creature that looks like a colo claw fish, but the stormy waters and dark, rainy skyline makes it recognizable as the planet from Attack of the Clones.


"Jango's Legacy"
Story: Haden Blackman
Pencils: Stephen Thompson
Inks: Ray Krissing
Coloring: Joe Wayne
Lettering: Digital Chameleon

THE STORY
A fast-paced action story, in which Jedi Master Shaak Ti goes off to protect clone children with the help of the newly-released Advanced Recon Clone Troopers. There are three of them, and two immediately get killed by droidekas. The surviving one displays an independent spirit, really different than the rest of the clones. I think this is a cool concept, and probably a springboard to more advanced soldiers we should see over the course of the Clone Wars. Obi-Wan and Anakin join them, freshly rescued from their peril in the previous story, and they all engineer a crazy plan to save the clone embryos by flooding the cloning labs, then holding off the ocean using only the Force!

THE ART
I've never seen Thompson's work anywhere else, and I don't particularly like it, especially right next to Duursema's artwork, but it's not bad. Although characters look okay, the droids and clone armor look clunky and have clumsy angles that make it hard to distinguish what is front, behind or profile.


"No End in Sight"
Story: Scott Allie
Pencils: Thomas Giorello
Inks: Ray Krissing
Coloring: Joe Wayne
Lettering: Digital Chameleon

THE STORY
This is a weird story where the Corporate Alliance convince a Mon Calamari commander that making more clones will let the Clone Wars go on. I say it's weird because it's all chaotic, and it seems like the whole outcome of the Battle of Kamino relies on this commander. When he finally sacrifices himself to prevent the Jedi from following the retreating Separatist forces, and after the obligatory scene where Sidious is revealed to have planned all this in advance, it feels too much like the battle was won easily. I don't see the whole purpose of Sidious letting the Republic know of an attack on Kamino, and let them think the Separatists are not aware, then have the Republic win and not be aware that they were supposed to. Sounds confusing? It is.

THE ART
It's hard not too compare the artwork to the other two stories in this issue, and I would rate this one in-between; Giorello's art is better than Thompson's, but not as good as Duursema's. I don't know why they didn't use one artist for the whole issue, but I guess it's to have three different representations of different parts of the same conflict. It's commandable.


CONCLUSIONS

An essential, logical follow up to Attack of the Clones. It would be expected to find out what would become of Kamino, and it's good that the editors and writers decided to show that early on in the series. This issue is highly enjoyable, but double the price for double the amount of pages? I think we should at least get a discount.

Rating: 8 / 10 Recommended

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