Advance Review: Star Wars: Rebel Heist #4 Review

Writer: Matt Kindt

Artist: Marco Castiello

Publisher: Dark Horse

From the start, Matt Kindt’s Rebel Heist mini series has been awesome to read. It’s only flaw, really, was that it felt a little bit disjointed. But in this final issue, the events of the entire mini series all come together in the stellar conclusion to the mini series. As with previous issues, it is told not from the point of view of the Rebels, but rather from the point of view of some other character. This remains one of the strongest elements of the book. Star Wars: Rebel Heist #4 is a comic with few faults, and definitely one of the best Star Wars comics I’ve read in some time.

The conclusion to the series is told entirely from the point of view of a nameless Imperial spy, a spy who has been trailing the group of rebels on their mission from the start, attempting to figure out what the scheme is, and why Han, Chewie, Leia, and Luke take the risks that they do. His inner monologue, throughout the entire issue, is fascinating, and his character definitely steals the entire mini series. At first, he seems like a typical, hardened Imperial spy. But as the issue goes on, his character morphs, and changes. In explaining his back story, his motivations become clear, but then everything he stands for is challenged as the motivation for the Rebels begins to come clear to him. I hate to get into too many spoilers, so all I’m going to say is that this character’s evolution, over the course of a single issue, is extraordinarily fascinating and impactful.

Just seeing the Rebels through the eyes of an Imperial is interesting. We sort of had that in the last issue, but it wasn’t quite the same thing. Here, we see a complete misunderstanding of the Rebel’s motivation, as the Bothan spy makes an attempt to figure out what’s going on with the Rebels, and what motivates them to do what they do. I know I’ve already said something similar, but I’ll say this again: Kindt’s writing of the character steals the show, and that alone makes this issue worth a read, for anyone with even a passing interest in the Star Wars universe. Really, this is classic Star Wars. The galaxy always felt like it was lived in, and had a rich and dynamic history. This issue really capitalizes off of that sense, taking advantage of the lived-in feel of the universe, and expanding it even further.

On top of that, this issue provides some of the series’ coolest action sequences, as well as implied action sequences, courtesy of Marco Castiello’s pencilling. Since the issue has a heavy focus on Luke Skywalker, we get to see some very cool acrobatics and combat scenes that require Luke to pull his lightsaber on opponents. These action sequences could, of course, fall flat. after all, it’s hard to convey Luke’s fluid movements, even before he really begins to come into his own as a Jedi. Castiello really steps up to the plate in these scenes, and while he isn’t exactly breaking new ground, he does a great job of portraying the action scenes, which are plentiful in this issue. Plus, he draws a really awesome panel showing Chewbacca standing atop a dead rancor. That’s some serious screensaver material.

Even in the more subdued moments, the art and writing remain solid. Action takes up much of this issue, but it has a lot of nuance and depth to it as well. The main cast of Luke, Leia, Han, and Chewie all get some great lines of dialogue. Kindt really proves that he has a great handle on not only the Star Wars universe, but also on these specific characters. They aren’t exactly the same as they are in the films – subtle nuances differentiate them – but Kindt’s interpretations are just as valid, and just as dynamic and interesting, as the original movie versions of the characters. Star Wars: Rebel Heist has been a mini series that embodies the very spirit of Star Wars, and not only is this climactic finale not an exception, it is also the best issue of the mini series.