Star Wars: Invasion is a comic series set concurrently with the early parts of the New Jedi Order novels, during the initial stages of Yuuzhan Vong's full invasion of the galaxy. It follow the story of the Galfridian royal family as their lives are rocked by the war when the Yuuzhan Vong invade their planet, with two primary threads:
Finn Galfridian, a Force-sensitive prince, is taken in by the Jedi for training. During this time, he struggles with his own feelings of rage and vengeance and his desire to rescue his father, and is drawn to follow an oracular but also probably insane man who seems to have knowledge of his future. Kaye Galfridian, his sister, is among the prisoners taken aboard the Yuuzhan Vong slave ship Tsam P'ah, but leads a revolt that seizes control of the vessel and becomes the main leader of the newly formed resistance group. Both siblings also find themselves dealing with sudden and terrifying changes to their bodies, as well as the revelations that people close to them aren't quite what they seem.
The series is notable for being the only major piece of Star Wars Legends visual media to depict the Yuuzhan Vong War (the primary subject of the New Jedi Order novels) in great detail, with its events overlapping significantly with the timeframe of the New Jedi Order books. Despite playing a major role in the timeline of the Legends continuity, the Yuuzhan Vong themselves were otherwise largely absent from official Star Wars comic books, video games, and toylines, only making a handful of brief appearances in the comic books Chewbacca, Crimson Empire II, and Star Wars: Legacy. And with the cancellation of the Legends franchise following Disney's purchase of Lucasfilm in 2012, the series also has the distinction of being the last major Star Wars work to feature the Vong.
Invasion was released by Dark Horse in 2009, running in alternating story arcs with Dark Times, as part of a large number of comics released following the success of the Star Wars: Vector Cross Through in 2008. However, the series was cancelled partway through its story in 2011.
This work contains examples of:
- Action Girl: Kaye Galfridian killed a Yuuzhan Vong warrior with nothing more than a knife, and later kills two stormtroopers with her bare hands. It's implied that this strength is due at least in part due to being an artificial Vong hybrid.
- Alien Invasion: The series focuses on the early days of the Vong's relentless invasion of the galaxy.
- Androcles' Lion: In Issue 2, Finn, Lowbacca and the Solo kids are attacked by a tuk'ata when they encroach on its cave. During the confrontation, Jacen notes a piece of wood embedded in its side and, when the beast is distracted attacking someone else, he darts in to remove it. The tuk'ata largely calms down after this, and retreats back into its cave.
- Badass Family: In the wake of the Vong's invasion, Called Galfridian becomes a resistance leader on a Vong-occupied planet, his wife Nina becomes the pilot and primary planner of the captured Vong ship, their daughter Kaye becomes the leader of the refugee group, and their son Finn begins training as a Jedi.
- Body Horror:
- The slave seeds implanted in Yuuzhan Vong prisoners make them grow spikes and other growths.
- The first sign of Finn's part-Vong parentage first becomes apparent as moving growths beneath his skin.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Yuuzhan Vong experiments transform their subjects into mindlessly aggressive berserkers.
- The Cameo: Finn spars with the Solo children at Luke's Praxeum on the same training course shown in Star Wars Jedi Academy.
- Captain Ersatz: Finn looks and dresses a lot like a young Cid Highwind from Final Fantasy VII.
- Cat Folk: The Intrepid Reporter Cianba belongs to a species resembling humanoid felines covered in thick black fur, with large ears, slitted yellow eyes and prominent fangs.
- Chest Burster: Something certainly seemed to want to get out of Finn's chest.
- Cliffhanger: The comic was cancelled partway through, and as as such the last issue ends with a number of plot threads — such as precisely what's going on with the Galfridian siblings, Finn's reaction to his adoptive mother being a Vong, Kaye and Nina's damaged relationship, Master Dray's plans, and the Vong's secret weapon — left open and dangling.
- Cloudcuckoolander: The mysterious Master Dray acts like an absent-minded hobo, spouting non-sequiturs and bizarre comments punctuated by lucid moments. Notably, this characterization persists even after he's revealed to be a Dark Jedi.
- Cut Short: The comic was cancelled at the end of its third story arc, just as Finn's mother officially reveals her true Vong heritage to others and forms an Outer Rim Alliance to help defend against her invading people. At least four more years of the war were left at the end.
- Death World: Dibrook's atmosphere is toxic, as is its rain. Nothing can survive there without heavy protective equipment or being specially bioengineered to breathe its air.
- Enemy Mine: During the battle at Shramar, Admiral Bylsma's distress call results in almost every vessel in the area arriving to defend the planet, resulting in a ragtag fleet of Republic vessels, Imperial vessels, pirates, mercenaries and private ships joining together to oppose a common threat.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: A recurring theme in the comic is that the Vong, who are raised in a merciless Proud Warrior Race culture, have a difficult time grasping ideas like mercy or valuing lives for reasons other than cold pragmatism. Tsalok cannot for the life of him understand why Finn didn't kill him when he had him at his mercy, and the Vong outpost on Dibrook later has a difficult time working out why a large Republic force has entered a hostile environment to storm an enemy fortress just to rescue malnourished, unarmed civilians who can't possibly be of use to them in the war. A Vong Shaper compares this to another puzzling incident earlier when their prisoners rose up in a hopeless revolt when the Shapers started experiment on a captive child.
- Forbidden Love: The Yuuzhan Vong Warrior Tsalok and the Master Shaper Nagme had some form of relationship in the past and still harbor feelings for each other, but are prohibited from acting on them because inter-caste relationships are forbidden in Vong culture.
- Genuine Human Hide: After the slave revolt takes over the Tsam P'ah, Arbeloa makes himself a hat out of the scalp and upper face of the slave ship's Yuuzhan Vong master.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Kaye and Finn are revealed to be part-Vong hybrids.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: During the battle on Dibrook, Tsalok sends a message to his New Republic foes by hoisting one of their soldiers over his head, making sure he's well in view of them, and ripping him in half.
- Honor Before Reason: Defied. As a large Republic force advances on their outpost, Tsalok orders the retreat, intending to relocate the base to a recently conquered world. Nagme the Shaper acidly asks why Tsalok, a warrior of the Vong, is running away from the enemy. Tsalok snaps back that there is a difference between running away and a tactical retreat; they will cost the Republic as many lives as they can as they fall back, but they have no hope of winning outright, and losing their lives, resources and research there for the sake of pride would only be stupid.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Kaye and Arbeloa, as a non-romantic example. In one issue, she asks him to relay issues to an army, only for him to tell her that she is their leader. She then points out that she wanted him to signal because he's the one tall enough to be seen over several rows of heads.
- Ignored Epiphany: In Issue 3, during the battle for Rychel, Finn spares the life of the Vong warrior Tsalok when he has him at his mercy. Tsalok is left very confused by this, since he cannot understand why anybody would show mercy to a defeated foe, and the text builds this up to make it seem like he is about to reach some internal revelation... but he promptly goes back to slaughtering helpless captives soon afterwards.Tsalok has never heard of mercy, let alone employed it — he is not about to start now.
- Intrepid Reporter: Cianba, a reporter with a particular chip on her shoulder about the Republic's nonexistent response to the Vong invasion, makes a point of reporting live from refugee camps and active warzones in order to make it as clear as possible how much of a threat the Vong are and expose how the Republic is leaving entire worlds to die.
- Jerkass: Captain Ogden is presented mainly as a pompous, unhelpful and snide jerk who keeps getting in the way of the main characters' attempt to rescue refugees and fight the Vong.
- Killed Off for Real: Caled Galfridian dies to a Vong assassin partway through the second arc.
- La Résistance: Nina, Kaye and the other prisoners of the Vong slave ship stage an uprising against their captors, commandeer the ship, and set off to rescue other prisoners and refugees while making themselves as much of a problem for the Vong as they can manage.
- Last of His Kind: Arbeloa is the last survivor of the Cilare people after their genocide at the hands of the Yuuzhan Vong.
- Last-Second Word Swap: In Issue 3 of Revelations, one of the ships responding to Admiral Bylsma's distress call starts to introduce itself as a pirate ship before cutting off partway to state that it's a private contracting ship.
- Meaningful Name: Subverted and lampshaded in Issue 5, where the characters meet a Vratix named Spraug, which means "Fearless". The others note that Spraug is visibly shaking when talking to them, and he replies that it's just a name. He's also generally depicted as a coward.Spraug: My name is Spraug. It means Fearless.
Leia: You're shaking, Spraug.
Spraug: It's just a name.
- The Mole:
- Dulac is revealed to be a Vong agent who has spent decades pretending to be a human in order to weaken resistance from the inside.
- The Imperial ambassador is likewise a Vong agent sent to keep the Republic leadership distracted from the invasion.
- Red Shirt: Jedi Master Lar Le'Ung is killed a few issues after his introduction to establish the threat posed by the Vong.
- Relative Error: Finn initially thinks that the twins Jacen and Jaina are lovers.
- Robot Buddy: Prowl is Finn's robotic companion, linked to him by a pair of remote goggles that let Finn see what he does, and acting as a snarky sidekick.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: The Galfridian royal family all take part in actively resisting the Vong in their own ways — Dulac leads their homeworld's resistance after the Vong takeover, Nina and Kaye lead the refugee group in fighting the Vong offworld, and Finn is a Jedi trainee who mostly pursues his own missions in sabotaging Vong projects.
- Sadist Teacher: Luke, upon seeing Finn levitate a pebble, places a huge boulder on top of it, and tells him to lift his rock again.
- Torture Always Works: The Vong, who are experts in inducing and enduring agony, use a number of intense torture devices to break their prisoners, which invariably ends up working.
- Underwater Base: The resistance on Artorias is based in a complex under its seas, the only place left unscathed by the Vong's Hostile Terraforming.