Review by Jamie McNeil
In the build up to events in Star Wars: The Force Awakens Leia Organa is leading the Resistance against the First Order who are effectively still in a cold war with the Republic. As seen in Legend Lost, Poe Dameron – leader of Black Squadron – has been sent to find explorer Lor San Tekka (seen in the opening scenes of Force Awakens) in the hopes he can lead them to the missing Luke Skywalker. The problem is that Tekka is being held in one of the most secure places in the Galaxy. To rescue him Leia, Poe and Black Squadron will have to pull off one the slickest heists ever planned and, with a little luck, they might pull it off. Yet luck, like most things, is not an infinite resource and the Resistance isn’t the only organisation looking for Tekka or Skywalker.
The wonder of Star Wars is that you don’t have to be a fan of one of the main characters. You might say that fandom is measured by knowing the back story of the obscure characters operating on the periphery of the series. It’s a theory that Poe Dameron: Legend Found writer Charles Soule seems to espouse, adding new dimensions to relationships existing between the wider cast, simultaneously broadening the profiles of Black Squadron’s members. The droids in particular have quirky little personalities that provide the humour while the dialogue is smart and entertaining. The plot itself recycles some old Star Wars clichés though Soule delivers them in a surprising way. Robbie Thompson scripts a straightforward yet intriguing plot for the final story. The only flaw it has is that it should have been placed at the beginning as it precedes the main story.
Artistically Angel Unzueta and Nik Virella (working with Thompson) produce some solid art with obvious differences between them. Unzueta’s work is incredibly detailed with a focus on realism, best when moving through simple settings which isn’t as easy as it sounds or looks. Where he doesn’t do as well is on the cast likenesses, being better with droids and anyone not featuring in the films. Virella employs less realism though his work is far more personable than his colleague’s. He captures the cast likenesses far easier especially Leia/Carrie Fisher, nailing that look of patient exasperation she reserves for Poe and Han Solo. Virella presents Leia as she should be: strong, resourceful and dignified. Like Fisher, Leia fights and survives and for those who grew up with the films it is a poignant and fitting tribute.
Soule has some good ideas, particularly on how some planets recovered after the Clone Wars that add nice touches to the Star Wars canon. Character development is Soule’s focus, emotionally charging his players in a way that counter balances any of the generic Star Wars moments in the narrative.
The scene is set for the series’ conclusion in Poe Dameron: The Spark and the Fire.