Last time we left off with Princess Leia and company, she had just started to speculate that there may be a spy amongst her crew; Luke showed us that he could get his mac on. Han and Chewie met up with a contact that ended up screwing them over and Vader wasn't all too happy about his demotion to babysitting. Issue 4 begins in the Coruscant Imperial Center where Han and Chewie are trying to get away from a few tie fighters. Han is able to stay ahead of them but is worried that the capital ships that are in orbit have been tipped off that they are headed in their direction. After a few laps and some evasive maneuvers, Chewie takes matters into his own hands by climbing to the top of the Millennium Falcon and starts picking them off one by one. With the Tie Fighters taken care of, they are now able to go into hiding below Coruscant's surface.
We catch up with the rebel fleet where a bridge officer is threatening to fire down on an unidentified crew of X-Wings, but Mon Mothma steps in and overrides the fire order and clears the crew for their flight. The bridge officer shares his concerns with Mon Mothma but she politely explains that she is the HBIC (head bitch in charge, for those of you with no street cred), and he is not to challenge the crew again even if they are not following protocol. Now in flight, Leia is directing her crew of nervous X-Wing pilots to stay focused on their task at hand because they could very well be scouting the future home of the rebellion where they can rebuild and become strong once again.
Back at the base Luke is staring out of a window when he suddenly hears the voice of Ben Kenobi warning him that, "It is Leia that is important". After the initial shock of hearing Ben's voice, Luke asks what is happening with Leia, but before he is able to get an answer from Ben's disembodied voice in walks Prithi, and to Luke's surprise, she was able to hear Ben as well.
Now on the Pybus System we catch up with Leia and her wingmen, Wedge and Tess, who are scouting the system when a star destroyer and an interdictor cruiser show up to fuck up their plans. Leia quickly realizes that the suspected spy must have tipped off her plans once again because Pybus was only a location that was listed in her personal navigation packet but was not listed in the files that she had Threepio slice into the fleet's data system.
Near the Sanctuary Moon on the Endor System an admiral is bitching to Vader that the quotas are too high and then they need more time. Vader tells him that more time will not be granted because the emperor is eager to complete construction to restore proper balance of power to the universe, and that's what he is here to do. The admiral then decides to give Vader some lip about the emperor not being present and that's why they are behind schedule. We all know that Vader believes that excuses are like ass holes, everyone has one and they all stink. Before the admiral is able to finish his argument, Vader puts his light saber straight through the admirals chest. Amongst everyone sitting at the table only one brave soul steps forward to defend the admiral's argument. Her name is Birra Seah, a systems designer who has been assigned to Vader's staff as a liaison to the project. Vader allows Birra to explain that the admiral was only speaking the truth and no matter how descriptive his reports are to the emperor, they cannot communicate the details required and only the presence of the emperor would provide the stability that the work crews need. After making her argument Vader dismisses everyone from the room with the exception of Birra. He tells her that he can sense that the force is strong with her, and she tells him that his staff and the work crews are not his enemy and requests to have Moff status over construction and she will see to it personally that his enemies are sought out and taken down so that the Death Star can be completed on schedule.
The issue wraps up with Leia trying to regroup her crew and fight off the imperial fleet that has come to take them out. She explains to her crew that with the odds stacked up against them that this has become somewhat of a suicide mission. On the last page you see Leia and her wingmen getting ready to take there stand against the empire, here and now.
This was definitely a "leading up to" sort of issue because everything, with the exception of Luke hearing Ben's voice warning him about Leia, was very predictable and it ended with not being able to see what Leia and her crew were staring at, which I assume is going to be a huge squadron that has come to take them out. The art held up like it has in the three previous issues but there were a lot of close up panels that didn't give away too much detail of what was going on which bummed me out because when I think of Star Wars I envision wide panels or even several full pages of art work but I suspect that was a way of keeping the story close to the chest for what is to come on issue #5. I've never ventured out into the "extended universe" but I'm very excited to see where the story takes us as we get closer to the end of this arc and beyond that.
Writer: Brian Wood
Artist: Carlos D’Anda
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics