Writer: Greg Weisman
Artist: Pepe Larraz
Colorist: David Curiel
Letterer: Joe Caramagna
Cover Artist: Mark Brooks
In Kanan #8 we see Caleb and Depa battle a ninja bomber as the Jedi Temple blows up around them. With a mad bomber on the loose, there are lots of explosions, but also some fun cameos. We once again see the General Kleeve, but also Jedi Battlemaster Cin Drallig and three of the padawans from the Young Jedi story arc in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. With lots of action, Kanan #8 picks up the pace and lays out a fun issue.
The issue starts back in the present with Kanan in a bacta tank recovering from being stabbed in the back while the crew of the Ghost looks on. However, the next page swings back into the past with explosions raging as the Separatist bomber strikes. Caleb and Depa find themselves in the middle of it as they search themselves for the resolve to fight back. Then, taking another break, the comic steps back further into the past to show the ninja bomber with General Kleeve as they who bombing plot comes together. Bouncing forward, we see Jedi in different areas of the temple come under attack. One seen shows Cin Drallig flanked by Jedi guards as they defend the padawans. Of key interest in that scene is three young padawans shown in the background: a Wookiee, a Nautolan, and an Ithorian. Fans of The Clone Wars will recognize them from the Young Jedi story arc, the one were the padawans go to Illum to get their lightsaber crystals and wind up getting kidnapped by Hondo. Eventually Caleb and Depa do battle with the ninja and save the day, which cements their padawan/master relationship. All in all, it’s a fun, action packed issue.
The art in this issue is colorful and cartoony as always, but there was some really great panels that jumped out. For example, there’s a nice shot of Sammo Quid holding a young Rodian as the explosions are going off. There’s a lot of detail and a very distinct look to the face, but also a lot of great coloring and lighting that all comes together.
Then there’s a multi-panel shot of Depa Billaba stopping a bomb in midair with the Force that has an interesting layout. Once again great details, coloring and lighting.
But then you get a panel like the following featuring two padawans. It’s really a throwaway panel. There’s no action. The dialog has some import on the story but not a lot. Yet the image pops out of the page with its vivid coloring and lighting. The emotions the linework captures on the padawan’s faces is equally impressive. You can easily see the oozing fear and smug jealousy. It’s a great panel and probably my favorite in the entire issue.
Lastly, just to illustrate some of the more cartoony nature of the artwork for this series, you’ve got good old Caleb and his overly expressive face. It’s a very emblematic of your typical animated character with the exaggeration of the expressions. That said, it’s also funny the way these three panels are laid side by side on the page and how much the contrast with each other. Caleb goes from exuberance, to dejection, to consternation. So while the artwork does get cartoony, it’s fun and it still works.
With enjoyable artwork and an entertaining, action packed story, Kanan #8 earns a five out of five metal bikinis. This was a nice pick me up for the series. Not sure if the next issue will crank it up another notch or ease back for some story/character development, but either way, I think this one earns it some room to slow it down or sets it up for a powerful second arc.
Reviewed By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.