Galactic Empire, but threats of turmoil are rising.
To stem the tide of the First Order, a military force
aiming in secret to overthrow the New Republic,
General Leia Organa has founded the Resistance
movement. Looking to expand her forces, Organa
has recruited the best pilot in the galaxy - POE
Now, with the help of his droid BB-8 and squadron of
fighter pilots, Poe must act quickly to defeat any
threat to the Republic that comes his way, no matter
how deadly the risks....
Set shortly after Poe's story in Before the Awakening, the series follow Poe as he leads a small unit of Resistance pilots in a search for Lor San Tekka, who holds a vital clue that could lead to Luke Skywalker. They are pursued by Captain Terrex of the First Order, who seeks to beat them to the information.
Tropes featured in this comic include:
- Aborted Declaration of Love: Snap gives one to Kare during their battle with the First Order. It's implied the two have been in a relationship for the past two months.
- Ace Pilot: Poe, who demonstrates it in the first issue by navigating his X-Wing through an exploding cavern and narrowly making it through a closing blast door.
- Affably Evil: Agent Terex is pretty polite, friendly and outgoing for a First Order officer, a die-hard Imperial loyalist and a former stormtrooper.
- The Alcatraz: Grakkus the Hutt is confined in Megalox, a Penal Colony that has no outer wall or fence. The only thing keeping the prisoners in is that if they leave, they will be crushed by the planet's intense gravity.
- All of the Other Reindeer: Terex is seen as an outsider by Phasma and the rest of the First Order brass due to his past as a pirate lord. It gets subverted latter on when we start to see the First Order's gripe with Terex is less about his past as a criminal in the aftermath of the Battle of Jakku and more about the fact he is more than a little corrupt and chronically insubordinate.
- Badass Crew: Poe gathers together an impressive group of pilots: L'ulo and Temmin are both veterans of the war against the Empire, while Karé Kun served with him in the Republic military. Jessika Pava, the youngest and least experienced member of the squadron, is still a very skilled pilot who is extremely loyal to the Resistance and her friends.
- Brainwashed: As punishment for going rogue, Terex has a device fitted into his brain to make him more obedient.
- Break the Haughty: Terex repeatedly insults Phasma and the rest of the First Order for being inferior successors to the Empire. Then he disobeys orders, launches an attack on the Resistance, loses, and is turned over to the First Order as a prisoner. His only prize for his efforts, one of C-3PO's memory circuits, is damaged beyond repair by BB-8. Phasma, who took the brunt of his mockery, gives the order to fit him with a device that removes his free will.
- Call-Forward: While on Kaddak, Threepio mentions how he heard Han borrowed heavily from Kanjiklub and the Guavian Death Gang... where both groups can hear him, causing them to team up to go after him.
- Canon Immigrant: The seventh issue, The Gathering Storm, features a Rakata as a background character, an alien species which had been originally introduced in the now-Legends video game Knights of the Old Republic.
- Continuity Nod:
- L'ulo mentions fighting at the Battle of Endor, as seen in Shattered Empire.
- Temmin mentions participating in the Battle of Jakku, which was covered in the third novel of the Aftermath series.
- Karé Kun first appeared in Poe's section of Before the Awakening.
- The Carrion Spike, Tarkin's personal ship, shows up. Also on ships, the Maxima-A class heavy cruiser, first mentioned in Before the Awakening, is shown visually for the first time.
- Kanjiklub and other underworld figures from The Force Awakens make brief cameos on Kaddak.
- Temmin still keeps Mr. Bones personality matrix on him for good luck. This is used to resurrect the droid during a tense situation.
- General Leia keeps and cherishes her mother's wardrobe.
- Cult: The group Poe encounters on the first planet he looks for San Tekka on worship a giant floating blue egg, which they believe will hatch the savior of the universe.
- Dark Is Not Evil: A white, glowing giant hatches from the Creche egg and attacks the Creche. A black giant protects them.
- Dark-Skinned Blond: Karé Kun is a dark-skinned human with short blond hair.
- The Don: Terex managed to become a crimelord in the years after the Battle of Jakku until he stumbled across the First Order.
- False Flag Operation: A group of criminals attack Poe and Suralinda Javos. It is later revealed that they were paid off by Javos herself to fake an attack, get Poe to believe she has vital information about the First Order, and take her to the secret Resistance base.
- False Reassurance: Terex gives one to the leader of the Egg group.Terex: Don't worry. My men won't hurt you.....Unless I tell them to.
- Flipping the Bird: BB-8 repurposes his iconic blowtorch gesture to be a rude one rather than a thumbs-up in issue 20.
- Foregone Conclusion: Of the pilots in Poe's squad, Snap and Jess are the only two besides himself in The Force Awakens, meaning they are in no real danger for the forseeable future.
- We also know that from the movie Poe will find Lor San Tekka on Jakku.
- Great Escape: Both Poe and Agent Terex show up at Megalox to ask Grakkus the Hutt about Lor San Tekka. Grakkus promises to provide the information to whoever breaks him out.
- I Have Your Wife: Terex has Oddy Muva's wife and is using this situation to force him to be his spy in the Resistance's ranks.
- Heroic Sacrifice:
- L'ulo dies while trying to protect the escape pods that are under fire from Terex's fleet.
- Oddy Muva rams his X-Wing into an Imperial command ship to give Black Squadron a fighting chance.
- Honorary Uncle: L'ulo L'ampar serves as this to Poe Dameron.
- In-Series Nickname: Temmin is called Snap by the other pilots.
- Insistent Terminology: Threepio doesn't employ spies, he uses operatives.
- Intrepid Reporter: Suralinda Javos, an old friend of Poe's from the Republic Navy who got into journalism and remembers enough of the training to put herself into (and get back out of) very sticky situations.
- Kaiju: What is actually in the Creche Egg, two of them no less.
- Large Ham: Agent Terex is rapidly shaping up to be one.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Ultimately, Terex's fate. After repeatedly berating the First Order's officers for not acting like the Empire, he is punished in a suitably Vader-esque manner by being turned into a cyborg without free will. Double points for the fact it's after a lengthy speech about The Evils of Free Will.
- Let Us Never Speak of This Again: Poe pretty much says this after egg ordeal.
- Light Is Not Good: A white, glowing Kaiju hatches from the egg and immediately begins attacking the Creche.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: Terex collects Imperial memorabilia, likes a good brandy and enjoys the finer things in life.
- Military Maverick: Terex eventually goes rogue, disobeying direct orders from Phasma along with Snoke's standing orders while recruiting his old pirate fleet to fight his own personal war against Poe Dameron and the Resistance. This gets him into trouble as a military junta like the First Order frowns on junior officers disobeying orders from superior officers.
- Mysterious Past: There are hints about Terex's past but no details. In issue #2, it is hinted that other members of the First Order look down on him because of his origins. In issue #4, it is revealed that he has some kind of history with Grakkus the Hutt. Then we find out he used to command a pirate fleet based out of Kaddak.
- Neutral No Longer: Suralinda Javos tricks Poe into leading her to the Resistance HQ for a story, but decides to join with them after getting a taste of how vicious the First Order actually are.
- No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine: Grakkus politely invites Poe into his home with the condition that he not harm anyone inside. It turns out that Terex is a guest as well.
- Noodle Incident: At some point in his past, Poe went "space crazy."
- Old Soldier:
- L'ulo has is a veteran of the war against the Empire, having fought at the Battle of Endor alongside Poe's mother. Karé Kun pokes fun at Temmin Wexley by calling him an old timer as well, but he protests that he was only sixteen at the Battle of Jakku.
- On the First Order side, Agent Terex used to be a stormtrooper in Palpatine's army.
- Penal Colony: Black Squadron visits Grakkus the Hutt in a special prison that has no on-site guards or staff and the prisoners govern themselves. The only thing keeping the prisoners in is that if they leave, they will be crushed by the planet's intense gravity.
- Red Right Hand: Malarus' left eye is black, as a result of the chemical enhancements she injects herself with via that eye.
- Robo Ship: BB-8 seems to be in a relationship with an astromech called IVee.
- Rogue Agent: Terex eventually disobeys direct orders, recruits his old pirate fleet and proceeds to start fighting his own private war against Poe. The First Order reacts poorly to this development.
- Running Gag: Astromechs refusing to fly with Jessika Pava because her droids tend to be destroyed.
- Snark-to-Snark Combat: A good chunk of Terex and Poe's dialogue is this.
- Space Pirates: Terex led a fleet of them in the years after the Battle of Jakku, with the Carrion Spike as his flagship. He later recruits said fleet to help in his personal war against Poe Dameron.
- The Spymaster:
- Terex serves as this for the First Order by means of his underworld contacts.
- Threepio, of all people, is this for the Resistance thanks to his contacts with droids throughout the galaxy.
- Time Skip: The series stops right before The Force Awakens and picks back up right after The Last Jedi.
- State Sec: The First Order Security Bureau features heavily into the plot in the form of Terex.
- Tempting Fate: Terex's chronic insubordination (including making repeated insults to Kylo Ren and Captain Phasma) along with his association with criminals and willfully disobeying standing orders from Snoke get the First Order to destroy his pirate fleet and criminal syndicate before taking him prisoner.
- Undying Loyalty: In issue #8 we start getting more of Terex's backstory and we find out how completely dedicated he is to the idea of the Empire; to the law, order and unity it represents. In fact, his main gripe about First Order brass like Phasma is the fact that they are not Imperial officers.
- Villainous Rescue: Poe's squadron is having trouble dealing with Terex's pirate fleet and is taking losses when a First Order heavy cruiser shows up and proceeds to blast the crap out of the pirates. They had been sent to take Terex into custody as the First Order High Command is very pissed about him going rogue.
- Wretched Hive: Kaddak seems to be a nexus for organized crime in the sector with both Terex's old gang, the Rancs, and other groups like Kanjiklub operating out of it.
- Xanatos Speed Chess: Confrontations between Poe and Terex generally go like this, with both of them focusing more on outwitting and out-maneuvering the other than on direct combat.
- Yin-Yang Bomb: The Kazerath device, an ancient Force artifact sought by Lor San Tekka, was crafted by both the Light and Dark sides and meant to be used by both. He believes it can help in ending the conflict between the two.
- You Talk Too Much!: Agent Terex has this to say of Captain Phasma:Terex: You really are a First Order commander through and through, Phasma. You threaten, and whine, and wail, but you never do anything.