Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple #2 Review

by Dennis Keithly

Cere Junda stumbles upon a familiar feeling conspiracy engulfing the world of Ontotho in Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple #2.

Warning: This article includes plot points for Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple #2.

Jedi: Fallen Order - Dark Temple #2 Review Cover

Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple #2

Writer: Matthew Rosenberg | Artist: Paolo Villanelli | Colorist: Arif Prianto | Letterer: VC’s Joe Sabino | Cover Artist: Paolo Villanelli & Neeraj Menon | Designer: Anthony Gambino | Assistant Editor: Tom Gronneman | Editor: Mark Paniccia

The Dark Temple story began as a routine Jedi mission of exploration on the world of Ontotho in Dark Temple #1, but things quickly went wrong when their caravan to a recently discovered temple was attacked. In the battle, Jedi Master Cardova was killed, and his Padawan, Cere Junda, was left to handle the matter herself. Before she could take any real action, she was knocked unconscious. In Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple #2, Cere Junda awakens to find herself in a conspiracy that smells like the very corruption that infected the Republic in the era prior to the Clone Wars.

Back to the Present

Dark Temple #2 begins with a scene in the present. In this case, the present is defined as the years immediately following Order 66 and the Emperor’s rise to power. An Inquisitor arrived on Ontotho to quell resistance to the Empire’s takeover of the planet. They got to the mysterious temple that Daa Corporation wanted to investigate before meeting resistance that the stormtroopers had difficulty in handling. The Inquisitor and her purge troopers have no such difficulty. The action in Dark Temple #1 concluded with the Inquisitor (the Second Sister) being confronted by an unknown person wielding a lightsaber.

That confrontation begins Dark Temple #2. It isn’t a confrontation the Second Sister has any difficulty winning. The Inquisitor’s attacker was what the reader would learn was a Fylari woman. She was not a Jedi, and she claimed to have found the lightsaber she carried inside the temple. This woman took advantage of a momentary distraction to attack the Second Sister, but died in the process. As she died, she declared, “You’ll never find it, Imperial scum.” The “it” is not defined in Dark Temple #2. This part of the story was only four pages, but it was an intriguing four pages.

Jedi: Fallen Order - Dark Temple #2 jail break

The Past

When Dark Temple #2 returns to Cere Junda, she awakens in a cell under the watch of a droid. She assumes she is a prisoner, summons her lightsaber, and frees herself. However, she wasn’t a prisoner at all. Cere soon meets Neralli of the Fylari. After a tour of their territory, Cere learns how close with the Force the Fylari are. She also learns that it was not the Fylari that attacked her caravan. In fact, she presents convincing evidence that the Daa attacked their own caravan in order to generate an excuse to invade Fylar and seize the temple that lies in their territory. Neralli explains that they know nothing of the temple, but they protect it anyway. They believe some history is better left undiscovered.

With the revelations that Cere learns from Neralli, she returns to the capital of Ontotho with Neralli’s droid, En-Threelo (N-3LO), to make communication with the council of Ontotho and then the Republic. The Fylari shun contact with the greater universe, and they have no communications equipment of their own.

When Cere and En-Threelo return to Ontotho City, the conspiracy theory is proven true. Cere attempts to reveal Dylanto Daa’s (the chairman of Daa Corporation) treachery to the Ontotho council, and they attempt to arrest her. They fail. Dark Temple #2 concludes with Cere having made her escape and return to Fylar to prepare for an invasion.

Dark Temple #2 Under Arrest

Final Thoughts on Dark Temple #2

There is something about the conspiracy presented in Dark Temple #2 that almost seems too tidy. When Neralli presented her evidence to Cere, it seemed a little too neat and clean. Could the attempted ambush of the caravan really have been so clumsy as to leave material that implicated Daa Corporation? It had the feeling of being a setup. However, for the moment, the Fylari appear to be as good as their word. Still, it seems like something else might be going on beneath the surface of this story.

Perhaps the larger issue is that this story is very reminiscent of the larger story happening in Star Wars at this time. Palpatine is on the verge of coming to power and beginning his plot to incite the Clone Wars, destroy the Jedi, and take over the galaxy. What is happening on Ontotho is very familiar in that regard. Perhaps this is one of the opening stages of his overall plan.

We now know the resistance introduced in Dark Temple #1  is the Fylari. The Temple was in their territory after all. The mysterious woman that attacked the Inquisitor was Neralli as well. The mystery of this series is now down to a few things. First, what was in the temple that Neralli referred to before she died? Second, why does the Empire want it? Finally, how did Cere Junda manage to protect it and keep whatever it was out of Daa Corporation’s hands? Dark Temple is an intriguing Jedi story that straddles Order 66. The mysterious contents of the temple should keep readers coming back for more.

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