This review of Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #11 contains minor spoilers.
Doctor Aphra is overwhelmed, overworked and underpaid. In other words, she’s in her element.
But the ambiguously moral archeologist with an eye for profit must contend with far more than she would have liked in the pages of Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #11, given her efforts to remain dead to Darth Vader are unraveling and there’s little she can do to stop it.
Such is where we find ourselves in the opening gambit of part III of The Enormous Profit story arc written by Kieron Gillen and illustrated by Kev Walker (pencils), Marc Deering (inks), Antonio Fabela (colors) and VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters).
In short, it’s frenetic, oscillates wildly and surges from page to page in a spasmodic episode of violence, subterfuge, desperation and … hope. Yes, hope, as resigned and far off as it may appear to be.
Aphra is reaping what’s she has sown, having installed the Rur artifact in a mechanized frame that immediately took umbrage in the form of wholesale slaughter from the buyers Aphra gathered in search of the the highest price. As violence reigns, limbs are lost and blood runs, some are able to escape, to band together, even as Aphra is called to task by 0-0-0 and BT-1, the deathly droids who are by no means loyal to their mistress.
The issue is fast-paced and violent. Wildly violent, but that’s be expected, given the showdown that is furiously forming. Even for Gillen, the betrayal let loose in these pages is astonishing.
Just and deserved, yes, but still astonishing.
Aphra may be right when she tells Rur “I don’t think I’m the sort of person who gets a happy ending.”
Doctor Aphra #11 is in comic shops now, selling for $3.99, and on Comixology.
(For more detail and discussion, listen to Comics With Kenobi #34, due out Sept. 5.)