The 212th Attack Battalion is outnumbered by Separatist battle droids, but an old lesson teaches them that not all is lost.
Greetings troopers! Star Wars Adventures: The Clone Wars Battle Tales #3 is here (8/5) from IDW, and your orders are to read it pronto! Once again, the writer of the series is Michael Moreci, and the artist is Derek Charm. Special guest artist is Valentina Pinto, who not only illustrated pages 4-18; she also colored them. The theme of this issue is no clones left behind. Battle Tales #3 has it all, a compelling story, powerful imagery, and a strong message of unity. Now it’s time to press the attack and kick some clanker butt!
Dooku Gives The Order
Things have not been easy for the clones of the 212th Attack Battalion. Battle Tales #3 opens with a striking image of Sith Lord Count Dooku in hologram form commanding his droid army from afar. No one draws Count Dooku quite like Derek Charm. With his raised eyebrows and downturned mustache, Dooku is an imposing figure indeed. As Dooku orders his droids to guard the prisoners, an EMP arrives at their feet. That can only mean one thing. Zap! EMP-1, Battle droids-0.
Despite being outnumbered, the clone troopers free the prisoners. This decisive win brings back fond memories for Waxer and Boil (who fought together in The Clone Wars episodes, Innocents of Ryloth, Liberty on Ryloth, and Landing at Point Rain) of another time and similar situation. Queue the flashback. Aboard a Republic cruiser, Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi and Clone Commander Cody discuss the best way to free a group of clone troopers they suspect have been captured on Krystar, a member planet of the Galactic Republic. Word about this came to Senator Padme Amidala from her friend Vishar Koss, a Krystarian representative.
Pinto’s art is absolutely brilliant! Literally and figuratively. Pinto has a subtle way of capturing emotion using the slightest lines and shading. Her lush use of colors compliments her illustrations perfectly. I don’t think I’ve seen anyone draw Padme any better. I also have to praise Moreci for writing a straight forward story for younger readers but making it attractive enough for older fans to enjoy.
Padme On A Mission
Padme, Kenobi, and Cody devise a plan to gather intel on the information they have, and if what they believe is true, they will attempt to free their clones brothers. With the mission underway, Padme meets with Regent Queb of Krystar for a diplomatic aid mission. Regent Queb isn’t precisely a gracious host and leaves Padme with Vishar, which allows Cody, Waxer, Boil, and the rest to infiltrate Queb’s compound. Seeing the clones march through the foreboding trees is reminiscent of the clones in the Umbara arc with General Pong Krell, walking through the trees and mist.
From behind a large boulder, Cody uses his macro-binoculars to see inside the compound ahead. And there they are, six clone troopers being held prisoner, stripped of their armor. Meanwhile, inside the Regent’s palace, Padme witnesses Queb making a deal with Trandoshans to hunt the clones in a game of sport like in The Clone Wars episode Wookie Hunt where Trandoshans preyed on Ahsoka and a few other padawans (Chewbacca also made an appearance in this episode).
The clones know they must act now. Waxer’s plan is to disguise his armor with mud so he can get close enough and to cut the power to the compound. They succeed in doing so, but a battle droid has noticed someone unlocked the pen and cut power to the electric fence. Before it can call for help, the battle droid is surrounded and systematically dismantled by the clones.
An all-out battle ensues when the clones reveal themselves and take out droids like a well-oiled machine. Again, Pinta’s art is full of exciting action! Meanwhile, inside the palace, the Trandoshans are demanding their prize from Regent Queb, who finally realizes that it was Padme who is the cause of the chaos.
Obi-Wan To The Rescue
Just as Padme and Vishar are about to make haste, a Trandoshan sees them and cuts them off, but this threat is short-lived as Obi-Wan uses the Force to toss him aside. The flashback ends with our heroes gathered around Master Kenobi, who reassures Waxer and Boil that “You clones will never be fodder, not on my watch. The Jedi, clones, senators, our allies—all of us. We’re in this together.” Messages of hope and unity are one of the core values of Star Wars, and it’s great to see that it’s still prevalent in other Star Wars media.
In the present, Commander Cody receives a holo from Captain Rex requesting backup. The issue ends with Rex looking over his shoulder at a stampede of Separatists droids heading in his direction, blasters blazing.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll repeat it IDW has been publishing the most consistent quality Star Wars comics since 2015. They aren’t the deepest, most thought-provoking Star Wars comic title, but they continuously publish great stories and eye-popping artwork. And what’s most important is that you feel good after reading it. Maybe some would call that fluff, but after a decade of disaster movies, what was Star Wars in 1977, if not just a good time.
Battle Tales #4 is due out 8/26 with Davide Tinto as a guest artist.