by Kelly Thompson, Marco Checchetto, and Andres Mossa
Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Captain Phasma (that’s a mouthful) sets up events in The Last Jedi and also (finally) gives Captain Phasma a stage to show off her skill and prowess without being relegated to a minor character that has presence on screen, but is ultimately under utilized and, essentially, useless–*cough* Boba Fett.
Kelly Thompson picks things up during the destruction of the Starkiller base from The Force Awakens and Captain Phasma’s ultimate escape from the base’s ultimate destruction–apologies to anyone living under a rock that may not know some of the events of TFA. Thompson, having only four issues in which to tell the story of Captain Phasma, is quick to escalate the threat to Phasma and immediately show the driven, machine-like tenacity that had made Phasma the feared leader–at least within the Star Wars universe–that she is. Thompson carries the story swiftly and concisely, throwing obstacles at Phasma at every turn; but with every challenge, the single-minded, unrelenting Phasma adapts quickly and with brutal efficiency. Reading Thompson’s characterization really picks at the scab left by the limited usage of Phasma onscreen. She’s a no-nonsense, highly trained and motivated person with a seemingly interesting backstory–possibly revealed in the Captain Phasma novel that has been released and will be reviewed at some point–that has done whatever it took to get to where she is. It’s a damn shame that Phasma received the Boba Fett treatment on screen, because there feels like there is a lot of potential here.
Marco Checchetto is, without question, one of the most talented artist in any publisher’s bullpen; he can seemingly do it all. But, even considering all of the fantastic books he’s been apart of in the past, he seems most at home in the Star Wars universe. Checchetto’s characters are spectacularly designed and executed; his ships and weaponry feels like it’s been pulled directly off the screen and his pace is second to none. Checchetto absolutely pulled his weight, and then some, on this entry into Captain Phasma’s legacy and it’s hard to name anybody else that could have done it better. Alongside him, Andres Mossa seemingly pulls out all the stops. The colors range from bright and vibrant to muted and grey, striking all the right notes for the story and the characters. Plus, this poor Mossa had to consistently make Phasma’s armor look good and that in and of itself has got to be a challenge. Mossa, of course, more than hit the mark providing this book with just the right touch to push it over the edge. Talents like Checchetto and Mossa, melding like this, is something profoundly special and it was an amazing visual experience from first page to last, thanks to their work. Here’s hoping we’ll see these two again on a Star Wars book, and soon.
Phasma got the shaft–pun not intended–on screen and this limited series is a step, a small step, in the right direction to rectifying the injustice she has received. The menacing figure that she is, she deserved so much more. For their part, Thompson, Checchetto, and Mossa have done an excellent job of giving her some much needed love. One can only hope that there is more love coming, aside from the novel, so this character that has been intriguing from the first time she appeared on screen can get the due she truly deserves. Pick this up if you, too, felt slighted by the short story that Phasma received in the new trilogy. You won’t be sorry.