Charles Soule’s illustrious Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters miniseries has come to a close and Han Solo has been not-so-safely retrieved by Boba Fett and returned to Jabba the Hutt. Not only has the comic series expanded the interlude between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, but it has further contextualized the current Marvel Star Wars comic series — Doctor Aphra, Bounty Hunters, and the mainline series — in a way that strengthens the present storytelling.
Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters (#5)
War of the Bounty Hunters has also set up a very important connection with Solo: A Star Wars Story, by reintroducing Qi’ra and paving the way for Soule’s upcoming series Star Wars: Crimson Reign. But Qi’ra isn’t the only familiar character that is set to play a major role in the upcoming five-part series — as the final issue of War of the Bounty Hunters reveals, Ren and the Knights of Ren show up, which will undoubtedly add to and strengthen what we already know about the characters from The Rise of Kylo Ren (also written by Soule).
Star Wars may, at times, suffer from ‘small galaxy syndrome,’ but the way that Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunter has been used to really strengthen existing storytelling while setting the stage for more adventures, has been really spectacular to read each month. Charles Soule has a natural knack for capturing the voices of familiar characters while breathing new life into them and taking charge of new characters like the Knights of Ren.
The fifth and final issue finally connects the dots on one of the major elements of the storyline — thanks to Lando, Leia now knows the “ancient history” about Qi’ra and Han’s romantic involvement. It will be interesting to see if this information will play out further in the mainline Marvel comics or if there are more stories on the horizon.
Outside of The High Republic, it does feel like Star Wars is somewhat stuck in the graveyard of the Original Trilogy. The current comic series all center around characters that are inherently bound to this period of galactic upheaval, with the exception of the Knights of Ren who have clear throughlines into the Sequel Trilogy. It will be interesting to see if War of the Bounty Hunters and, by extension, Crimson Reign, will play any role in the upcoming Book of Boba Fett series. Especially with Crimson Reign launching mere weeks before the series premiere.
Overall, Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters was a welcome surprise. I had had my reservations with the crossover event, especially with my distaste for how Boba Fett had been previously presented in Star Wars: Bounty Hunters, but I should have known that Charles Soule would never lead me astray. He is dedicated to creating compelling stories that quickly capture the attention of readers and they always add so much to the already-existing universe we all know and love.
The final issue of Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters is on sale now.