– Spoiler Review –
Agent Terex’s flashbacks continue and Threepio turns out to be a hero? Poe Dameron #10 continues the series’ tradition of fun, adventure, and well-paced action.
In Poe Dameron #10, the final pieces of Terex’s backstory fall into place, describing how he could go from a man of the Empire looking to rebuild it to a full-fledged criminal kingpin. It turns out Wenda, Bett, and Corlac lured Terex into helping them with the false promise of returning the Empire to its former glory and were instead out to steal the ships from Rothana’s shipyards to start their own pirate fleet. When Terex overhears their betrayal (thanks to the Carrion Spike’s powerful surveillance tools…which might tie into a different story thread from this series, but more on that in a bit), something in him snaps: he realizes disorder and chaos reign as the hope for a return to order and law under a new Empire’s rule fades into nothingness. What does a man do when all hope is lost? When the rule of world as they desire it is unattainable? For Terex, the answer is make his own law and order, turning into the dastardly head of the deadly Ranc gang. Seeing him at the lowest of his lows only to find a way to take advantage of the situation adds another excellent layer to the character. Plus, with it being laid bare that stability and order are all he really wants/what really drives him, this makes him even more human and relatable than before, as he’s already got some sympathies from me due to how charming and entertaining he’s been throughout the series so far. But when a First Order helmet finds its way into the Ranc’s den and to the feet of Terex’s throne, he simply can’t ignore the call to establish law and order.
While #9 showed Threepio’s to blame for the Guavian Death Gang and Kanjiklub teaming up to hunt down Han Solo, he gets a bit of (rather surprising) redemption. Goldenrod’s been prattling on about the important work he does and all the operatives he has, but knowing Threepio it’s easy for readers and Poe to assume he’s fluffing up the reality of his network. Turns out he isn’t, as Threepio’s droid network is way more pervasive than I ever would’ve given him credit for, and they help Poe, Oddy, BB-8, and Threepio escape two perilous situations in the issue. For once he really is the hero he claims to be, which ends up being a truly entertaining turn of events in the issue. Once Poe and crew find the droid with the information on Snoke’s whereabouts, which happens to be a Separatist assassin droid, things only get more complicated. It turns out the failsafes Threepio allowed the droid to keep from its original programming and the ones he programmed in require Nunzix to be in a safe place before divulging his information and Kaddak is the least safest place for everyone. Poe’s reaction to the whole situation, disbelief and frustration, hilariously highlights the over-efficient means in which Threepio has programmed his spies.
Despite leaving his First Order position, Terex’s dream of order and law have never died, so it’s not surprising he ‘allows’ Poe to flee Kaddak because he hopes it’ll lead them to the Resistance’s base and thus prove everyone who thinks he’s a failure wrong. This really muddies the mole within the Resistance’s Black Squadron storyline, as it seems to imply Terex’s spy within Black Squadron has been keeping the bases’ location secret while giving away information to Terex. Part of me began to wonder if Terex actually knew the location and had been using the Spike’s surveillance tech to listen in on everyone’s conversations, much like how the flashback here reveals he learned of his ‘friends’ betrayal, but then why would he be pursuing Poe back to the base to learn its location, thus throwing a hole in that theory. Oddy Muva, which sounds like ‘odd move’ in a way, ends the issue making an odd move indeed and boarding the Spike without mentioning anything to Poe. Since he’s brandishing his weapon it would seem to imply he’s going on there to cause damage, but could he still be the spy and only carrying his weapon out to make it look like he’s not on Terex’s side? Or has Terex hijacked part of Threepio’s network and one of them is the spy? Or is it some crazy combination of all the above? Needless to say, the story of the spy in Black Squadron both holds my interest and is something I’d really like to uncover.
This issue is a showcase for Charles Soule’s handling of characters, as he helps deepen a great new villain while subsequently giving Threepio an unexpected hero’s role. The pace of events in issue #10, and all of Poe Dameron to this point, has been pitch perfect for the flying spy-jinks of Poe and his crew. Likewise, Phil Noto’s art continues to amaze, giving life to these adventurous tales with a true flourish.
Here are a few other things:
- While we’ve uncovered quite a bit about Terex’s history this arc, I do believe whatever Phasma’s referencing when she mentions Terex failing (in issue #2) has yet to be revealed.
- I found it odd the opening crawl said Poe, “…has taken a blaster bolt to the chest…” which heavily implies it wasn’t a stun blast, when anyone who read the previous issue would know it was a stun blast. At least those who pick up the TPB won’t be bothered by this oddity, as an individual issue’s opening crawl is taken out.
- The 40th Anniversary of Star Wars is this year and Marvel is releasing variant covers throughout the year in celebration. Poe Dameron #10 is supposed to have such a cover, but I didn’t see it at my local comic shop. And, oddly enough, it’s the second of the planned 48 covers while the first one is a variant for next week’s Doctor Aphra #3. How does that work?
- Soule took to Twitter to say in Poe Dameron #14 he’s changed a scene to honor the life of Carrie Fisher.
Threepio and Poe find the droid they were looking for and readers get the Agent Terex backstory they were waiting for in another great Poe Dameron issue, #10.
+ Pieces fall in place for Terex’s story
+ Threepio’s heroics and misfires
+ Poe in his X-wing where he belongs…with Terex in hot pursuit
CANON COMIC REVIEWS:
Black Squadron: #1 | #2 | #3 | Lockdown: #4 | #5 | #6 | The Gathering Storm: #7 | #8 | #9 | #11 | #12 | #13
The Last Padawan (#1-6) | First Blood (#7-12)
Vader (#1-6) | Shadows and Secrets (#7-12) | The Shu-Torun War (#16-19) | End of Games (#20-25) | Annual: #1
Vader Down (crossover of Star Wars and Darth Vader on-goings)
Skywalker Strikes (#1-6) | Old Ben’s Journals | Showdown on the Smuggler’s Moon (#8-12) | Rebel Jail (#16-19) | The Last Flight of the Harbinger (#21-25) | Yoda’s Secret War (#26-30) | Annual: #1 / #2
Darth Maul (mini-series)
Rogue One (adaptation)
Han Solo (mini-series)
Obi-Wan & Anakin (mini-series)
Shattered Empire (mini-series)
Princess Leia (mini-series)
Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir (mini-series)