A DYING PLANET.
A DESPERATE MISSION.
AND A PROPHECY OF DOOM FOR THE REBEL ALLIANCE.
Another prophecy? Oh no! (But I still can’t get over Mount Frickin’ Yoda.)
We’re in the back stretch of the Jedi Prince retrospective. Can you sense my near relief? Can you detect the increasing snark? Yeah, the snark is strong in this review because, well, MOUNT YODA. (Cannot make this up.)
But let’s start from the beginning. We start with our villains, the Prophets of the Dark Side, hanging out in their Chamber of Dark Visions in Space Station Scardia, located in the Null Zone of Space. Wow, that’s a lot of bad fanfic names located in one place. (Unfortunately, this isn’t badfic.) Supreme Prophet Kadann basically declares himself the new Emperor, saying that the dark side speaks through him. Then he makes that prophecy of doom:
When the Dragon Pack,
Perched upon Yoda’s stony back,
Receives a visitor pierced by gold,
Then comes the last days of the Rebel Alliance.
Can I just take a moment to say how much I love the Prophets of the Dark Side? Seriously, they’re ridiculous, with their sparkly robes and Space Station Scardia and blocks of powder and nonsensical prophecies that only come true because the Imperials make them be true. And then there’s Kadann, who’s described as a dwarf, and High Prophet Jedgar, who’s seven feet tall. This is how this series has diversity: creating really short and really tall characters who work together! How quaint!
Anyway, our Rebels have escaped Bespin and are vacationing on Z’top! Even the droids are there, because I can’t think of a better place for droids to hang out than near sand and water. By the way, is this like when Wraith Squadron and the Fire Nation went to the beach?
Leia and Han are arguing about creatures called septapuses (which I’m assuming have seven legs instead of eight), and Han thinks to himself that maybe it’s not a good idea to marry Leia, since they argue all the time. Oh, honey. That’s what marriage is like! Seriously, though, did Han forget about the events of the Original Trilogy? You know, when he and Leia argue all the time?
Everyone’s having a good time (except for Han and Leia) when Artoo detects an Imperial Single Trooper Compact Assault Vehicle (these authors love unnecessary capitalization and acronyms). Luke crawls into the CAV and finds a small knife and several discs labeled with a triple “S,” for Space Station Scardia. How convenient that our heroes come across data discs from the Prophets! You’d think that Kadann would be a little more careful with his prophecies, but whatever. I guess he doesn’t care, since he’s foreseen the end of the Rebel Alliance and all.
As an aside, Han looks really hot in his beachwear. It’s too bad we didn’t get a view of Luke’s weird skirt-looking bathing suit.
The Rebels leave lovely Z’top, knowing they have to bring this information to the Rebel leaders. So they go to their new base on Dagobah. Yes, Dagobah. The Rebels have a base on Dagobah. That makes perfect sense. Especially, you know, since Luke supposedly didn’t tell anyone about Yoda and Dagobah until The Thrawn Trilogy, not even Leia. (Yay, continuity snafus! See, everyone, they happened early on, too.)
I can’t even begin to describe how much the base on Mount Yoda doesn’t make sense, but I’ll try my best. The Rebels have a fortress, named DRAPAC (Defense Research and Planetary Assistance Center). There’s a school there, called Dagobah Tech, so Ken and the other Rebel kids can learn.
Ken, that smart kid who learned the secrets of the galaxy in the Lost City of the Jedi, asks Luke how Mount Yoda got its name. Really, Ken? Really? You can’t figure out that maybe, just maybe, Mount Yoda was named after Yoda? You know, the Jedi Master who instructed Luke? I’m assuming that since this book isn’t going along with the idea that Luke kept his training a secret, that it’s common knowledge who taught him the ways of the Force. So, you know, USE YOUR MIND.
Luke answers that the mountain used to be called Mount Dagger, but was renamed after Yoda died. This leads me to believe that DRAPAC was on Dagobah before Yoda died. WHICH MAKES NO SENSE WHATSOEVER FOR MANY MANY REASONS. The only person who knew about Dagobah was Luke, and he wouldn’t have told anyone in the Alliance where he’d gone to get his Jedi training. He certainly wouldn’t have told the Rebels to start a base there. And if there was a base there, he would have known about Dagobah before going there! No, Luke would have only told people about Dagobah and Yoda after Yoda’s death. He’s not dumb, people. Now, I guess I can understand the Rebels settling there after Yoda dies; Leia does say that the fortress isn’t finished yet. But, when you think about it, that doesn’t make sense either, because the name was changed after Yoda’s death.
I swear, I tore my hair out about this for almost an hour. SO, SO DUMB. MOUNT YODA = THE DUMBEST.
Okay. Moving on. The Rebels listen to Kadann’s prophecy and get scared, although Luke tells them the future is always in motion. There goes Luke again, being inconsistent about the Force! On one hand he’s a great Jedi, on the other he can’t move a simple latch without straining. *shrug*
Another thing I love about these books is that they’re written like outlines. They’ll go into detail for certain scenes, and then gloss over important events like “so and so traveled here and the Imperials caught them.” Again, it’s like bad fanfic! Only not.
The Grand Moffs organize a rescue of Trioculus from Cloud City. However, they’re intercepted by the Scardia Voyager! The Prophets demand that Grand Moff Hissa hand over Trioculus and pledge his loyalty to Kadann. Hissa still sees Trioculus as Emperor, and muses, “Kadann has never attempted to overthrow an Emperor before.” Um, pardon me, but hasn’t there only been one Emperor? (At least of this Galactic Empire.) Sigh, whatever. Although I find the idea of Kadann trying to overthrow Palpatine utterly hilarious. Eventually, Hissa is blackmailed and agrees to support Kadann.
Back on Dagobah, Ken doesn’t want to start school. *whine* Luke tells him how learning is a privilege and he should feel grateful to go to Dagobah Tech. Some kids didn’t get to go to school because they had to work on the moisture farm all day long. God, Ken, you’re so ungrateful, you little Jedi Prince.
But suddenly, a random cargo ship shows up on Dagobah. Luke is immediately suspicious and unsure of the new arrival. It’s not like he can use the Force to sense if this being has good intentions or not. It’s an alien from Duro named Dustini, and he has quite a tale to tell. Apparently, the Empire likes to dump waste on the planet, and then steal old archaeological artifacts. Not only is Kadann a jerk, but he’s a grave robber, too! Dustini goes to show them one such artifact, a golden crown. But when he puts it on his head, it stabs him with tiny knives! It’s booby-trapped! Dustini gives his dying request that the Rebels go save his fellow archaeologists.
And then everyone realizes that THIS must be the visitor pierced by gold mentioned in Kadann’s prophecy. DOUBLE SPOOKY.
Then we’re off to Duro! Ken “accidentally” locks himself in the Falcon‘s cargo hold, becoming a stowaway. How convenient–now he won’t have to go to school!
En route to Duro, the Imperials notice the Falcon and attack. Han says he can take the Imps, but for some reason his guns aren’t working to full power. (Because Ken broke them when he locked himself in the cargo hold.) Luke goes to investigate and realizes there’s a stowaway. But how will he get to Ken? The door is locked! I mean, it’s not like he can use the Force, or his lightsaber, to get through, right? Oh, phew, he uses the Force after all. YAY LUKE! Threepio fixes the ship, like he does, but the Falcon is hit and has to escape to hyperspace.
Back on Space Station Scardia, Kadann destroys the carbonite block holding Trioculus. The glove he wears remains, because it’s not the real indestructible glove of Darth Vader. Kadann has it, that wily rascal! Now, with Trioculus dead and the glove in his hands, Kadann holds all the power!
The Falcon returns to Duro–really smart–but the ship is in need of a lot of repairs. The repair shop owner actually suggests that Han just buy a new ship. HAHAHA, he must be new here.
Han says to fix it, and Leia says that the Alliance will pay. That’s very generous of you, Leia! They rent a ship to get down to Duro and save the archaeologists. Along the way they discuss Triclops, the real son of Palpatine. Ken read about him in the Lost City of the Jedi, but he didn’t get to read the entire file. He also didn’t think to tell the Rebellion about Triclops before now. Apparently Triclops is insane, but the grand moffs keep him alive for some weird reason. I wonder if we’ll ever find out why! Then we learn that Hissa has also returned to Duro, to find Triclops, who has escaped from the prison there!
There’s an action scene involving giant fefze beetles attacking Luke, Han, Ken, and Threepio. (Luke is a horrible guardian for letting Ken go into dangerous situations all the time.) Then, while searching for the archaeologists, they find Triclops! Who didn’t see that coming?
(Also, this happens.
Luke is suspicious of him, but Triclops tells him to trust the Force to determine his intentions. WHAT A NOVEL CONCEPT, LUKE.
Luke decides to trust Triclops, and then they find the archaeologists and deliver Dustini’s message. Dustangle (NOT MAKING THIS UP), Dustini’s cousin, says they need help removing all the valuables. He gives a ring to Han, asking him to one day give it to the woman he loves. I WONDER IF THIS WILL BE A PLOT POINT LATER ON.
The Imperials attack, drilling into the planet. Then there’s an earthquake that reaches 77.88 on the Imperial quake scale. That’s a pretty damn big earthquake. The Rebels and Imperials come into contact–again–and the Imperials fail to capture Ken–again. And then Grand Moff Hissa’s legs and arms get dissolved by toxic waste. How horrible! I kind of feel bad for him.
And then the Rebels go back to Mount Yoda the end.
In our next installment, we learn more about Triclops, we learn that Trioculus really isn’t dead (duh!) and Leia becomes the Queen of the Empire! Or not.