STAR WARS: THE HIGH REPUBLIC ADVENTURES #2, available Wednesday from IDW, continues the tale of several younglings set in the time of the High Republic. Namely, young Zeen and Lula, two determined young women.
All of a sudden there has been so much in way of new material surrounding the High Republic. Both in books and comic books, the time period is blowing up. Thankfully, not literally. In fact, you probably noticed that there’s another series with a very similar name (Star Wars: The High Republic).
Both series do feature a combination of Jedi and their Padawans, though the focus for each feels very different. In this case, the dominant themes are loyalty, learning to make decisions, and the power of secrets.
Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #2 brings us back to Trymant IV, a planet that faces a fiery end. This is the planet that Zeen and Krix grew up on, and the planet that Padawans Lula, Farzal, and Qort all came to help.
Now would probably be a good time to mention that there’s a Nihil ship involved as well, and regular readers are probably already dreading what that could mean.
While there’s no doubt that Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #2 is targeted at a slightly younger audience, it makes no effort to dumb down the plot. Daniel Jose Older has written a plot that is both thrilling and tense, one that will hopefully result in plenty of character development down the line as well.
The devastation happening on Trymant IV won’t surprise anybody, myself included. It’s literally in the comic description. Yet there are several surprises throughout this issue. The first being that there’s a bit of humor hidden in this tense moment in time (thanks to a certain character and their odd choice of names).
Many characters were given a chance to shine here, getting a chance to show how they fight, think, or otherwise take action. It was fascinating to see and leaves me hopeful that this will be the expected pattern going forward.
There are many themes in this issue that will be familiar to Star Wars readers, as Daniel Jose Older made clever use of them. Such as the belief of staying true to oneself, and the consequences of decisions made. They feel right at home here, and help to solidify the series, rather than bring it down.
Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #2 has to be one of the brightest Star Wars series I’ve read, and that’s saying something. The bright backdrops allow for a stark contrast, while also setting up for several fantastic action shots.
Harvey Tolibao and Pow Rodrix (Magnus Arts) were the lead artists, and their character designs are still one of the many highlights in this series. Each character looks unique and memorable, especially the ones that have been named (obviously). There are some intentional contrasts being drawn here, both in writing and in design, and it makes for an iconic look.
Rebecca Nalty’s colors really do give this issue such a bright look to it. These are bright battles, space scenes, and so much more. The use of solid and bright colors for backdrops is not new but is used to great effect here.
Jake M. Wood’s lettering is surprisingly evocative, capturing the depth and complexity of the situation, not to mention the high emotional levels that are running all over the place. The letters also help to increase that feeling of danger, as impacts feel and look real.
Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #2 continues to build upon the characters and world that have been introduced. These young Padawans feel full of potential, and it’s impossible not to root for them as we watch their journey progress.