The next chapter in Jason Aaron, John Cassaday, and Laura Martin’s new Star Wars saga hit shelves this week, with Star Wars #3 continuing the tail of Luke Skywalker. Taking place after the destruction of the Death Star, Luke, along with Leia, Han, and more from the Original Trilogy, fill in the blanks between A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back.
Here are the biggest Easter Eggs, references, and nods we found in this week’s new issue.
The very title of the issue has a lot of meaning in the Star Wars world. After all, that word, “Strikes” is part of the title of what’s largely considered the best Star Wars film, the second release and fifth episode, Empire Strikes Back.
The Vehicles of Issue 3
Scout Walkers (AT-ST), Assault Tanks, Combat Speeders, Speeder Bikes, AT-AT Walker, the Millennium Falcon, TIE Fighters, oh my! Yes, there are many vehicles from throughout the Star Wars universe in this issue.
Han and Leia are, of course, in the AT-AT walker from last issue. After shooting down a TIE, they turn the corner and come upon the first three – well, several of each, to be precise.
Later, Star Destroyers and a landspeeder (too many speeders) make appearances as well.
The Assault Tanks and Combat Speeders are the only ones out of these that aren’t well-known and oft-used. The Combat Speeder’s origins are in the Clone Wars, where an earlier version appeared, ridden by none other than General Grievous. This version is highly modified from the one in use 20 years prior, though, with additional engines, additional weapons, and an enclosed cockpit.
The Assault Tank, likewise, was in common use during the Clone Wars and can be seen in live action in the prequel trilogy. They look pretty similar here, with the rotating top-mounted cannon – though, like the modification from Clone Trooper to Stormtrooper, these have lost their blue shading and moved to the stark all-white paint job.
Han and Leia’s Longing Look
A single shot, as Han and Leia’s AT-AT goes down at the hands of Darth Vader and his lightsaber, mimics an iconic moment from the films. The two, of course, eventually fall in love, but we don’t know that at this point of the story. Still, that longing look looks a lot like a mirror image of this one, doesn’t it?
More Familiar Sights
Well there we go – Darth Vader in a technically superior vessel (in this case a Combat Speeder) chasing Luke Skywalker, through a tunnel not quite good enough for a proper battle. Vader, in a shot looking right at his face, even notes it, saying “You will not outrun me again.” It goes one better, though – when Luke’s speeder bike gets shot by Vader’s combat speeder, Luke says, “I’m sorry, father.” Maybe you’re not the one who needs to apologize, Luke ‘ole boy.
Darth Vader Crossover alert!
Want to know what Vader was thinking when he saw the Millennium Falcon fly away and the facility was exploding around him? Give Darth Vader #1, on shelves now, a read for the other side of that scene! We get a little more from Vader here, too, divulging his intentions to his old master.
Who’s House? Say whaaaaat?
Obi-Wan’s house. The alien criminals are concerned about his home, but said “he keeps to himself.” Don’t worry, criminals. He’s… not an issue anymore. There is however a mysterious box at his house with “For Luke” written in Aurebesh on it.
Luke is very concerned in this issue that he’ll never be the Jedi his father was. With Obi-Wan gone, who could possibly train him? How can he possibly gain a stronger connection to the Force? Of course, in the early moments of Empire, we see him use the Force to pull his lightsaber to his hand. Well, check out the novel Heir to the Jedi, in stores now for the first part of that journey! Star Wars Story Group at work, folks.