Written by Greg Pak
Art by Emilio Laiso, Roland Boschi and Marco Turini
Colors by Andres Mossa, Rachelle Rosenberg and Neerai Menon
Letters by VC’s Travis Lanham
Cover Art by Terry and Rachel Dodson
Edited by Mark Paniccia
Assistant Editor Tom Groneman
Jabba the Hutt may seem like a lazy slug, after all he never seems to travel too far beyond his Palace on Tatooine. Old Jabba didn’t get to where he is by chance though, the old Hutt is such a wily old godfather that he lets other people do the running for him. Which is exactly what he does in this neatly crafted little Age of Rebellion tale from Greg Pak.
The premise behind this episode is part-South Sea Bubble, part Huttese chess game. The South Sea Bubble comes in the form of the rare intoxicating brew of Tusken Wind, which is doing the rounds of Canto Bight as the Imperial elite’s tipple of choice. It is rare though, very rare and that makes its purchase and acquisition as much about prestige as consumption.
As the trading value of the beverage rockets on the galactic exchange, Jabba sees a perfect opportunity to use the latest rich persons’ fad to his advantage. He lets it be known that the Tusken Raider’s precious output will be available at a very specific time to a number of parties (each unaware of the other), and then lets them fight it out between themselves. Just so happens that this helps him solve a little problem brought to his door by the neighboring Tuskens, who at the end of this issue find a very apt way of rewarding their Hutt overlord.
This neat little tale is another fun installment of this series of high quality one shots set across the Star Wars galaxy. With Jabba the story is extra interesting because it is set before the events of Empire Strikes Back so we get a bit of context to how Jabba got to be so influential, as well as getting a story from a character that doesn’t align with the Imperials or Rebels. Jabba aligns only with his own interests and those of his crime syndicate. While we see his usual excessive behavior here, we also get a lesson in his street smarts.
The art in this book has been undertaken by a small army of artists and colorists, but it works well with Canto Bight, Jabba’s Palace interior scenes, and Mos Eisley/Tatooine all rendered in slightly different styles. The art at the final few pages of the book with Jabba indulging in the Tusken Raiders’ gift is especially good.
That coupled with a concise fun tale meant that this issue ended up just like that last batch of Tusken Wind…priceless.