They say never to judge a book by its cover but you can feel free to ignore that here. It’s rare that this is the case – Marvel normally take great care with their Star Wars comics – but it’s remarkable how bad the cover for Bounty Hunters #17 is, and how that’s representative of the quality within too.

This is not an especially compelling story, it must be said. Cyborg bounty hunter Valance is trapped on an Imperial Star Destroyer, surrounded by apparently endless legions of Stormtroopers. Help is on the way though, with T’onga – who’s bringing some familiar faces along for assistance – on her way to rescue him. Can the motley crew reach him in time though?

This is an issue full of characters acting in really stupid ways to service the rather thin sequence of events. For example, the Imperial official who decides to open an airlock and kill one of their own officers before identifying who’s even in the compartment they’re exposing to the vacuum of space – thus giving Valance the motivation to go nuts on the Imperials just a short while later (though that also feels as if it’s in the story just for the sake of it – it’s a very unconvincing character beat). Qi’ra once again pops up here; she’s basically the Wolverine of the Star Wars universe right now, seemingly contractually obliged to be in every Star Wars comic whether it makes sense or not. The only thing that does work in this issue comes with the cliffhanger, which is excellent – but does feel as if it comes out of absolutely nowhere.

The cover for issue 18 showcases what could be the new main cast for this particular series and it’s not exactly an enticing one. Though this issue is still part of the aftermath of War of the Bounty Hunters, the branding is still shown for the next issue – despite the fact that Han Solo managed to reach his intended destination after all (because of course he did – there would be no other way for the crossover to play out). Is this actually the final issue of the crossover, in terms of publication date? Who knows at this point. One thing I do know, is that it was very far from the universe shattering delve into the underbelly of the Star Wars universe that it was promised to be.

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