Leia finds that old alliances are unreliable in the fight against the First Order while Poe and Finn encounter bounty hunters in Star Wars: Allegiance #2.
Warning: This article contains plot points for Star Wars: Allegiance #2.
Writer: Ethan Sacks | Artist: Luke Ross | Colorist: Lee Loughridge | Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles | Cover Artist: Marco Checcheto | Assistant Editor: Tom Groneman | Editor: Mark Paniccia
The world of Mon Cala and the Mon Calamari have long been allies of the Rebellion and the Republic. Anakin, Obi-Wan, Ahsoka, and Padmé first insured their alliance during the Clone Wars when they helped subdue a Separatist insurrection. Leia, Luke, and Han then recruited them into the Rebellion’s cause during the Galactic Civil War several decades later. Even when the Mon Calamari weren’t supporting the Resistance, some of their most celebrated citizens were. Admiral Ackbar perished aboard the Raddus while serving with General Organa. Given this long standing friendship between Mon Cala and the freedom fighters of the galaxy, particularly Leia, it must have come as a shock when the leader of the Resistance received a hostile welcome after arriving on the planet. Star Wars: Allegiance #2 resumes the story of Leia’s desperate mission to recruit the Mon Cala to the Resistance cause.
Honoring the Fallen
It is under the guise of honoring the fallen that Leia made her trip to Mon Cala. After some tense moments at the landing zone, Admiral Ackbar’s son, Aftab, diffuses hostilities between Leia, Rey, Rose, and Chewbacca on one side and a group of angry Quarren on the other. Next, the pair travel to the Mourning Shrines so that Leia might pay her respects to Admiral Ackbar. While Aftab appreciates Leia’s journey to Mon Cala to honor his father, he points out that she needn’t have made such a long trip. Leia responds that isn’t what she meant when she said she was there to honor him. Unfortunately, Leia never really gets the chance to explain what she meant.
Aftab brings Leia before Mon Cala’s king, Ech-Char, and she makes a plea for Mon Cala’s assistance in the war. As on the landing platform earlier, there are Quarrens present that object to her arrival and request. They are nursing decades old grudges. When Leia and the Rebels departed with the Mon Cala fleet, the Mon Calamari and Quarrens left behind suffered at the hands of the Empire for it. As Allegiance #1 made clear, the First Order is unforgiving of anyone that offers aid of any kind to the Resistance. They know that Leia’s presence put their entire world at risk from the new menace to the galaxy. It also places into context why some of the Quarrens were so anxious to kill her when she arrived.
To further illustrate this point, Allegiance #2 provides another example of the brutality of the First Order. The First Order fleet has arrived in the skies above Fondor. The apparent ruler or leader of the planet kneels brutalized in front of Supreme Leader Kylo Ren. He pleads for mercy and reminds Kylo that although a Resistance contingent passed through the area, Fondor refused to aid them. The mere fact that there was a communication with the Resistance is unforgivable in Kylo Ren’s eyes though. Fondor’s leader loses his head and the shipyards come under the control of the First Order. The entire scenario seems like a pretext for the First Order taking over Fondor outright rather than attempting to forge an alliance.
The death of Fondor’s leader is reminiscent of Kylo’s slaying of Lor San Tekka in The Force Awakens. Kylo also points out that the Empire was too lenient, and the First Order is learning from its mistakes. However, there is a counterpoint to this. In A New Hope, Leia reminded Grand Moff Tarkin that the more he tightens his grip, the more star systems would slip through his fingers. Indeed, it is this type of brutality that inspires rebellion.
Cold Blooded Mercenaries
The other storyline in Allegiance #2 focuses on Poe and Finn. In the prior issue, Poe met with a contact that had knowledge of a secret Rebel weapon cache. The cache is located on the moon of Avedot. In Allegiance #2, they have arrived at the hidden base and begin searching for the weapons. They aren’t alone though. Kendoh and her band of mercenaries are on their tail. They want the bounty the First Order has placed on Finn, and to that end, they set about killing Poe and Finn’s Resistance companions to improve their odds.
Kendoh’s team first debuted in Galaxy’s Edge. While they were clearly mercenaries in that series, their methods were considerably less brutal. They weren’t shy about using their fists when they had to, but they weren’t unnecessarily lethal. Those considerations don’t exist in Allegiance #2. Remex quickly shoots one Resistance soldier. Wooro strangles another. Kendoh tosses a knife into the chest of a third. They are no nonsense. They seem much more capable than the team readers were introduced to in Galaxy’s Edge. In addition, they fill the niche of bounty hunters that has been lacking int he sequel trilogy compared to both the original and prequel trilogies.
Final Thoughts on Allegiance #2
Allegiance #2 concludes with Rey, Rose, and Chewbacca defending the Millennium Falcon from yet more angry Quarrens after King Ech-Char declares he needs time to deliberate on Leia’s plea for help. It was all a setup. While the trio clashes with the mob of Quarrens, they are captured on camera. A rogue Quarren then requests a secure communications from his subordinate, and the issue ends with this Quarren seemingly about to report the presence of the Resistance on Mon Cala to the First Order. Furthermore, General Hux’s reaction to the communication suggests that this is a relationship that was previously developed. The poor Quarrens, they seem to always align themselves on the wrong side of the war.
Despite the focus on Leia on Mon Cala and Finn and Poe’s mission to recover the weapon supply, readers shouldn’t ignore Rey’s presence in Allegiance #2. There are a few important revelations concerning her. First, Rey mentions that she doesn’t have her lightsaber when she summons her staff through the Force prior to the fight with the Quarrens. She doesn’t seem any less formidable though. Her Quarren opponents find out how tough she is the hard way. Second, she seems to have the same impatience that Luke was known for early in his training. While Leia and Aftab pay their respects at the Mourning Shrines of Mon Cala, Rey laments that she is sitting in a transport at the bottom of the ocean far away from the action. Furthermore, she notes that she is supposed to be the last great link to the Jedi and she is doing nothing while their friends are fighting the cause. This seems like an obvious setup for Rey to learn a lesson in patience and humility later in the series similar to Luke’s lessons between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.
Allegiance #2 continues an excellent series subtly detailing the state of the galaxy between the events of The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker. This is a story with a purpose in developing the rise of the Resistance after the losses incurred in The Last Jedi while developing the brutality of the First Order.
Dennis Keithly is a graduate of the University of Missouri, North Texas attorney, husband, father of two, and co-host of Starships, Sabers, and Scoundrels. In addition to Star Wars, Dennis is a fan of science fiction, fantasy, and super heroes in general. When not engaged in fictional universes, Dennis is reading a good book or watching the NHL, football, or studying the NFL draft.