Welcome, once again, to Wednesday! This week, we ditch the Stonepower for Droidpower (…?) as papa and Chelli Aphra face the Eternal Rur and what’s become of the Ordu Aspectu – it’s a pretty fun, fast-paced read that gives us a fairly big hint about what might be behind the Screaming Citadel…now, I know most everyone is probably too busy salivating over what’s to come at Celebration Orlando to really invest much time in reading about comics, so let’s just get to it already!
Doctor Aphra #6
We start out with oddly-outfitted Captain Tolvan plotting the Aphras’ demise from outside the central core only to be sidetracked by having to fight off ghostly, reanimated droids…which is what the Aphras are doing inside, except they’re having a go at reasoning with Rur: in exchange for answering “when is it,” Rur explains to the Aphras how he was attempting to copy his intellect to preserve it for eternity (sounds like a holocron to me, but with sentience instead of lessons and messages). We find out from Eternal Rur’s perspective, the “fake Rur” became an evil shell when said intellect was transferred instead of copied to the machine, but what we can infer is that the machine, or Eternal Rur, was the evil bit, quite akin to Ultron, actually. To make good on their bargain, Aphra figures out a calendar system that works for Rur and we find out he’s been zonked for over a thousand years…this does not please Rur since, as he says, “I cannot punish the dead.” So, of course, he takes his anger out on the Aphras, or tries to, but the Aphras fight him off, head back down into the core, away from Rur, and Miss Aphra tries to get a shot off at the crystal structure to put Rur back to sleep but has her blaster knocked out of her hand at the last minute by one of the droids. Safe(ish) for now, but with no way out, Miss Aphra (I’m really looking forward to her dad no longer being involved just so I don’t have to continually differentiate between the two of them) goes back up, does a very dramatic knit cap removal and puts her hair up on the way, then takes a lightsaber she filched from a corpse earlier and starts going HAM on the droids, making her way to the crystal console where she removes a very large, important-looking crystal as well as a small one to activate the bridge to escape…which works, but on the other side of the bridge is what’s left of the Imperials trying to fend off a large number of droids. Since she knows she needs them (well, their ship) to escape, Miss Aphra calls them across the bridge and then disables it straightaway once Tolvan is across, dropping the droids, and I reckon the rest of the Imperials, into the void of space below. They all board Tolvan’s shuttle only to find the pilots dead, killed by their now Rur-controlled protocol droid who knocks Tolvan down and goes for Miss Aphra, who’s trying to fly them to safety. Luckily, Aphra’s able to get the ship clear of the self-destruction, and, once Rur is blown up, he no longer has control over the droid so it stops strangling her. Papa Aphra, after everything they’ve been through, still sheds a tear for “the twilight of the Ordu Aspectu.” Tolvan, after all she’s been through, pulls a gun on Miss Aphra, asking who she is, and is rewarded with a lightsaber through her right shoulder courtesy of Mr. Aphra…definitely the most badass thing he’s done to date…in a somewhat strange twist, Aphra dumps Tolvan and the droid off on “A Long Way From Anywhere, The Outer Rim” (which is pretty hilarious) instead of just killing her because, as Miss Aphra says, “you’re cute.” I don’t see it, frankly, but to each their own…I do like that we see Tolvan in just a tank top, verifying that the strange, black, ribbed part of her attire doesn’t cover her completely: it’s essentially like two very large gloves that go to about mid-bicep, and a neck piece that goes to about the collar bones…a sort of far, far away dickey, so to speak…I’m still very curious as to why she wears it and what, if any, real function it serves, especially the head piece as it looks to be for more than fashion…but, alas, as this may be the last time we ever see Tolvan (doubtful), I may never know…anyway, all things being cinched up except the big crystal that probably still contains Rur, the Aphras make a stop at Quarantine World III, where Aphra stole the 000 Personality Matrix, to drop off said crystal…happy ending…ish…Aphra’s dad sorts out her doctorate issue so she can go back to being Doctor Aphra again, and she sells the artifact that she was trying to sell at the end of the first issue. Unfortunately, she doesn’t quite make the killing she’d hoped for, but she’s able to settle her debt, happens to meet back up with Krrsantan (so she has her rad ship back…and the droids), and then drops the bomb that she gave the Quarantine World a fake crystal and has the real Rur crystal in her possession…and that, my friends, must be the catalyst that gets the Screaming Citadel started…I’m guessing we’ve not seen the last of ol’ Rur or the Ordu Aspectu just yet…papa Aphra would probably be delighted to hear that…Chelli, however, I’m sure not so much…
So, what’d you think? I’m sort of on the fence about how I feel about the Ordu Aspectu and transferring intelligence into a machine…it seems a bit too heavy-handed on the sci-fi for Star Wars, especially when the Ordu is a sect of Jedi, but, on the other hand, I don’t hate it either…it’s certainly no Stonepower, that’s for sure…anyway, do you think the crystal is what will kick off the Screaming Citadel, or is that a red herring? Are you glad Krrsantan’s back in the picture and they didn’t just have him fly off into the sunset? (I am…I love him.) Do you think we’ll ever see Tolvan again? What about Aphra’s father? Give the book a thorough second read and let me know what you think in the comments…or I’ll tell the Eternal Rur that you’re related to the people that kept him dormant for over a thousand years…that’d probably end poorly for you…until next time, TWS out.