After the tangled tale of the Skywalker Saga, I’m looking forward to Star Wars: The High Republic‘s clean slate. The High Republic (or Project Luminous as it was once known) will be a series novels and comics taking place 200 years before The Phantom Menace, allowing it to be recognizable as Star Wars while having entirely new characters and settings. This was due to launch in the fall but because of – you guessed it – COVID-19, Lucasfilm announced that The High Republic will now begin in early 2021.
Over the last month, we’ve seen some previews of what’s to come, including a lengthy extract from YA novel Star Wars: The High Republic: A Test of Courage. Today, we’ve got another taste via uncolored pages from the comic Star Wars: The High Republic #1, by writer Cavan Scott and artists Ario Anindito and Mark Morales. The issue will introduce us to Keeve Trennis, a talented young Padawan on the brink of becoming a Jedi Knight. As you can see below, we pick up on her being tested in combat by Trandoshan Jedi Master Sskeer.
Scott was a member of the core planning team for The High Republic and came up with Keeve Trennis early on. In an interview with StarWars.com, he said:
“I came up with the character of Keeve Trennis in our first Project Luminous summit. Now to see her coming to life through Ario [Anindito] and Mark [Morales’] art is wonderful. The pages the art team have been putting together are just beautiful, Keeve is exactly how I imagined. No, actually she is a lot more. The facial expressions Ario has given her in these early pages helped inform the way her character responded to events in later issues. That’s what I love about comics. It’s a true collaboration.”
It’s difficult to tell at this stage how the rest of the comic will turn out, and to be honest, this scene of Jedi training could be from any era of Star Wars. I also have a couple of reservations about the cute fairy sidekick, so let’s hope it’ll stick around for the first few pages and no more.
Right now, we don’t have a release date for Star Wars: The High Republic #1, but it’s expected to drop in January 2021. Watch this space for more.