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When you hear the name Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, you probably think of the incredibly popular addition to the Disney theme parks in both Florida and California. That’s expected, and you’d be forgiven for not knowing there is also a comic book miniseries with the same title. Written by Ethan Sacks with art by Wil Sliney and Dono Sanchez-Almara, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge fleshes out the backstory of one of the theme park expansion’s central characters, Dok-Ondar. It’s a fast-paced read that simultaneously tells a series of stories from Dok-Ondar’s past while tying the events of those stories to a team of bounty hunters attempting to steal a Sith artifact from Dok in the present.
It’s All Connected…
If the comic has one goal, more so than establishing a backstory for Dok-Ondar, it is to show that everything in Star Wars publishing – whether it is a film, book, comic, television series, or YouTube-exclusive short – is connected. Previous publishing efforts and tie-ins have certainly suggested that, but Galaxy’s Edge takes this concept to the nth-degree. Given the nature of the Disney Parks expansions, this makes sense. “Star Wars Land” is absolutely filled with easter eggs and references to the greater Star Wars universe, and Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities is the hub of those references. The shop itself even contains a direct link to this miniseries, with the baby sarlacc captured by Han Solo and Chewbacca in issue #1 prominently on display in the store.
Beyond the shop itself, the story is also linked to the upcoming film, Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, by way of the publishing initiative, Journey to the Rise of Skywalker. The comic tie-in to that publishing initiative, a miniseries called Star Wars: Allegiance, was also written by Ethan Sacks. One of the two main stories in that miniseries features the same bounty hunter crew that is central to the present-day story taking place in Galaxy’s Edge.
…But a Little Disjointed…
The main drawback to the comic is the first two issues feel much more disconnected than the rest of the series. Part of this comes from the natural ramp-up of any story, but you can also sense an editorial influence of bigger names like Han and Chewie being forced on the story early on to draw casual fans’ attention. The cover of the collected edition, which doubles as the first issue’s cover, further drives that point home as it showcases Han Solo front and center, despite Han’s involvement being limited to about half of the first issue.
Fortunately, this improves starting with issue #3, as lesser-known characters with direct ties to the larger story of Galaxy’s Edge, namely Hondo Ohnaka, take center stage in both the present-day and past narratives of each issue. Instead of a self-contained “let me tell you a story…” situation being run by Dok-Ondar, the story bounces back and forth between the past and the present with Hondo as the narrator. Hondo’s story, while following a similar structure to Dok’s, flows more naturally between issues. Given Hondo’s general nature as a – I’ll be nice and say “storyteller” here – it makes sense that he weaves a better, likely embellished tale.
…and of Little Consequence
The overall story presented in this miniseries is undoubtedly fun and provides a great bit of context to the world you step into when visiting the theme park, but it ultimately lacks a sense of meaning to the larger Star Wars story. Perhaps that’s understandable given that this miniseries is ultimately a piece of marketing for Galaxy’s Edge, but I feel it would have been better if it revealed Batuu’s importance in the larger narrative on a grander scale. This could be due to the novel Galaxy’s Edge: Black Spire taking that role, but I admittedly haven’t finished that yet.
Both the larger narrative and the individual issues’ stories are fantastic reads that provide great background information on Dok-Ondar and his shop, as well as some fun winks at notable minor characters from the Skywalker Saga, but that’s ultimately all they are: winks and background information. I love that issue #2 simultaneously references The Clone Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope, and the theme park’s most popular shop by tacitly explaining where Dok-Ondar gets his legacy lightsabers from. It is for me the best part of the series but ultimately doesn’t mean much to the overall story of Star Wars. It’s great to learn what led Greedo to be so aggressive with Han in the cantina on Mos Eisley, but if you never learned that you’re not missing anything.
Worth a Read
Despite all of this sounding like you shouldn’t waste your time with the miniseries, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. One of the best parts about the theme park is that it is just far enough removed from the Skywalker Saga that you don’t feel out of place, allowing you to craft your own Star Wars story that gives you a tacit connection to the larger narrative. The same can be said for the comic. It’s clearly connected and gives you a great deal of insight into the world you’re entering at Disney. For me, it enhanced my initial visits to the park tremendously, especially when I was able to chat with local Batuuans (cast members) about the baby sarlacc, even sharing with them information that they didn’t seem to be aware of.
7.5/10 – Good, not great
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is a quick, fun read that will enhance your theme park experience, but if you skip it, you’re not missing anything important.