• Marie E. Wilson

SPOILER REVIEW: "War of the Bounty Hunters: Prelude - Precious Cargo" by Charles Soule

"Prelude - Precious Cargo" is the intro issue for the "War of the Bounty Hunters" mini-series. It was written by Charles Soule, illustrated by Steve McNiven and Laura Martin, and published by Marvel comics on May 5, 2021.

This was a super fun...and gruesome...start to the "War of the Bounty Hunters" mini-series!! We see Boba Fett having some issues with Han Solo's carbonite containment and the only way he can solve the problem is to get help from an old contact. But there's a price to pay...

I'd like to get something really minor out of the way in regards to the title. I'm confused about the whole "Alpha" part. Wookieepedia says that the issue released today is called "Alpha #1" and the word Alpha can be found on the title page, but the actual name of the issue is "Prelude - Precious Cargo." And this isn't actually the first official issue of the mini-series, that would be the issue releasing on June 2. In other words, I have no idea what Alpha is referring to or how it actually fits into the title. Oh well, I'll survive!

Boba Fett takes down a competitor on his way to the champion.

As for how everything is going to tie in, all throughout this month, the issues that are going to be released are preludes to the actual mini-series. So each of the 4 ongoing series will release a prelude that will eventually lead us to the first issue in the mini-series on June 2! I think this is such a cool way to bring everything together, especially since all the current ongoing series (except for High Republic) take place during the same time period (between Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi). I am so excited to see how everything connects across the board!!

In this issue, Boba Fett goes to a Besalisk (think Dexter Jettster) named Doc Ragon on Nar Shaddaa (The Smuggler's Moon) to fix a problem with Han's carbonite stasis. The carbonite matrix is unstable and Han is in danger of turning into goo!! To me it just looked like the carbonite was melting, but turns out it's a much bigger problem than that! Ragon wants to be paid upfront and Boba Fett is not having it. So, Ragon offers Boba another option--kill Nar Kanji's pit warrior--Wyrmen Lictor, the current pit champion! Boba takes the second option, paints his armor black, calls himself Jango (!!), and enters the pit fights! And they are extremely visually vivid with blood and gore and goo and everything in between--heads are literally constantly flying...

Wyrmen Lictor, the pit champion.

Boba ends up making it all the way up the ladder to face off against Wyrmen herself (a total creepfest of a spider species). And after a truly hard fought battle, Boba makes it out on top...only to discover that the Kanji have killed Ragon and taken off with the carbonite-encased Han Solo. Dun dun dun!! How will he get Han back?? How does Jabba keep from losing his cool with his newly promised prize possession on the loose?? How are the other bounty hunters going to be involved in this debacle?? And what will happen to Kanji??

So many fun things to ponder and consider as we begin this new Star Wars journey in the hunt for carbonite-encased Han!!

Side note: there's a great quote from Ragon on Han, "That guy was always the king of bad choices. Guess they finally caught up with him." Awww, haha.

MY SCORE: 8/10 fabulous visuals and an entertaining tale with a cliff-hanger ending lay the stage for the upcoming mini-series with aplomb.

Wyrmen Lictor gets ready to face off against Boba Fett!

"War of the Bounty Hunters Alpha: Prelude - Precious Cargo" written by Charles Soule, illustrated by Steve McNiven and Laura Martin

Before I go, I wanted to include this rundown of the comics that are releasing over the next few months that can be found at the back of this issue. It's incredibly helpful for visualizing what's to come!

About Marie:

I am so excited to have joined the Beyond the Blast Doors Star Wars conversation! As a person who is deeply passionate about every aspect of the galaxy far, far away, I'm always looking for ways to spread my Star Wars joy and love.

I've spoken at cons and written articles on a variety of Star Wars topics but one of my biggest passions is the canon literature. I hope to help you find your way through the Maelstrom because what is out there is truly amazing!

Email: aphrasartifacts@gmail.com

Twitter: @aliamorgaine

Blog: www.thestarwarsreview.blogspot.com