Comic Review – Luke Skywalker and Friends Attempt to Escape from No-Space in “Star Wars” (2020) #32

In recent issue of Marvel Comics’ flagship Star Wars title by Charles Soule, Luke Skywalker and his rebel friends Princess Leia Organa, Chewbacca, Lando Calrissian, Amilyn Holdo, and Lobot have found themselves trapped in a mysterious part of the galaxy called No-Space, which originated as a base for the cutthroat band of marauders known as the Nihil in Lucafilm’s The High Republic publishing initiative.

Now, in issue #32 of the current volume of Star Wars, Luke and company make an effort to free themselves from this new prison by putting their heads together and working with their unlikely new allies.

Star Wars #32 begins with Chewbacca demanding to be released from his holding cell, a request which the befuddled guards seem more than happy to accommodate. They bring him to talk to Lando, who translates from Shyriiwook that Chewie has remembered they have a Path Engine– the only method of egress from No-Space– left aboard the ship that brought them there. So after a negotiation with Captain Blythe, the Abyssin leader of the Kezerat Colony, our heroes are given a broken-down ship and no other assistance to retrieve the engine back on the surface of the Great Hall of the Nihil. Blythe’s only other condition is that Princess Leia stay behind so that her friends have a reason to return, so after repairing the ship they set course for the platform. It’s fun to see Lando and Holdo continue their already-consummated flirtations as this mission kicks off, with Luke preparing to distract the Nihil killdroids that populate the Great Hall while attempting to recover his indispensable Jedi text. This operation actually goes pretty smoothly until Luke’s jetpack runs out of fuel, the Jedi text tips over the edge of the platform, and Skywalker finds himself in the grasp of one of the killdroids, giving us this month’s cliffhanger ending.

I don’t often have a lot to complain about when it comes to Star Wars comics written by Charles Soule, and that trend indeed continues in this issue. I will say that I was bothered again by a bit of false advertising on the “A” cover, which depicts Luke flying on his jetpack (which does happen– though he’s wearing a different outfit entirely), being pursued by a squadron of Imperial TIE fighters (which does not happen at all). There are, in fact, no Imperial forces present in this issue whatsoever, as it takes place in No-Space, outside the borders of the known galaxy. At one point Leia even has to explain to Blythe that the Empire has taken over from the Republic since his colony last received news from the outside world. I’m not sure why exactly that kind of thing bugs me so much, but it comes up every once in a while and I can’t help but think of a kid picking up this comic only to be disappointed that there aren’t any TIE fighters chasing Luke inside. It’s a simple fix– and the story of this comic is exciting enough without needing to be misleading on the cover– so why not just be truthful and show the Great Hall’s killbots in pursuit of Luke instead? This isn’t a make-or-break problem that affects my enjoyment of the comic, which I will likely continue to buy regardless of what’s on the cover, but just a minor pet peeve that I would love to see addressed going forward. Otherwise I’m still having a lot of fun with this tangential sojourn into No-Space, and I really dug the work that Soule and fill-in artist Madibek Musabekov (Star Wars: Obi-Wan) have put into this issue.

Star Wars #32 is available now wherever comic books are sold.