Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic #29
"EXALTED" PART 1
Fugitive Padawan Zayne Carrick's quest to clear his name takes him to a secret storehouse of Sith artifacts collected by the Jedi Masters who framed him!
With “Vector” in the rear-view mirror, the events it set in motion begin to play out here in the first part of “Exalted.” My editors and I considered this a key chapter, and we worked for a while to strike the intended note. After all, showing the impact of “Vector” had in one title would demonstrate the importance of the event for its chapters in the other series.
The result is a story that was a lot of fun to write. I didn’t, as some have asked, set out to echo Raiders of the Lost Ark, although it is absolutely true that I developed this story between writing sections of the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull adaptation . We’d already established that isolating Sith artifacts were part of the Covenant mission back in the beginning of “Vector” — and while a storehouse is a storehouse is a storehouse, we certainly didn't mind that this issue came out the week after the movie did!
Neither was it my intention to write an environmentalist story — although there are certainly elements of that in what resulted. If the Covenant is socking away all these nasty artifacts, some with randomly malevolent abilities, the neighborhood that gets the storehouse is going to be unlucky indeed. And in Odryn, I created one of the poorest neighborhoods in the galaxy. And not only don’t they have the political power to say “Not In My Backyard” — but they don’t know what’s there to begin with!
Odryn was my invention, but the idea of the Feeorins — and yeah, apparently the plural is Feeorins — and their growing stronger as they age had already existed. I built upon that in developing their society — which is in some ways a Shangri-la gone wrong, a closed, xenophobic place that’s hard to get to and harder to live in. We don’t gather that it was any kind of Eden before the Jedi started showing up, but things certainly have gone downhill ever since.
- Another great cover from Dustin Weaver, one of my favorites from the run. Jarael’s disguise gave us a nice chance to hint that Celeste might be staying in our era — at least to the folks who look at covers long before the issues come out. I keep changing my choices on my favorite cover list for this series, but this one’s right up there near the top.
- I do know who was on the Jedi Council for this episode — but Bong didn’t have room to depict full shots of anybody. Likewise, I know who I think Lucien replaced on the Council — but, as with the list of Councilors, I am not going to reveal anything that hasn’t appeared in the comics. The comic book pretty much has to speak for itself as far as establishing canon is concerned, anyway.
- We now know where Alek is from; there’s more to come…
- Check out the little communicator: it’s the same one Lucien had in #9, his last on-camera visit to this building…
- We first mention the planet Odryn in #5 and hinted at the climatic conditions here back in the Handbook.
- That’s Zayne’s lightsaber that JaraCeleste has — and you can count the other two Jedi impersonations in #6 and #7…
- Bong Dazo designed the Covenant sigil used on Celeste’s pendant — that we then planted in #28. We don’t see the front of it except in reflection, but there’s an eye in the middle of the three flanges. The bit reminded me a little of Logan’s Run and the Ankj. “Runner, use your key!”
- This was the first time we got to see a Bong Dazo version of Gryph, since the little guy wasn’t in "Daze of Hate." Again, every artist has a different interpretation. Bong’s is more hobbitesque, probably. (Is that a word?) I love ’em all — the movie guy’s face wasn’t that expressive, anyway!
- I don’t know that Ludo Kressh’s pedicure set actually existed, although I would bet from looking at the guy that he probably could have used one.
- And speaking of Gryph, this issue came out the same day as Dark Times #11, featuring a cameo of a certain Snivvian. Yes, I did write the passage that was excerpted — but I won't get into where or when that recording was made. Stay tuned!
This issue has been reprinted in the following collections:
Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Old Republic Vol. 2 (Marvel, 2017),
available from Amazon.
Star Wars Omnibus: Knights of the Old Republic Vol. 2 (Dark Horse, 2013),
available from Amazon.
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Vol. 6: Vindication (Dark Horse, 2009),
available from Amazon.
The issue is also available digitally from Marvel.com.
Be sure to also check my shop for the availability of signed editions.