The latest Star Wars comic has revealed four more Jedi who survived Order 66 - and, in a surprising twist, two of them are actually Jedi Masters. No doubt those two will be of particular interest to Darth Vader and his Inquisitors.
Charles Soule's Darth Vader series is set in the Dark Times after the foundation of the Empire, and it shows just how the Lord of the Sith became one of the most feared men in the galaxy. Already he's claimed his lightsaber and brought terror to Mon Cala. Now, though, Vader is free to pursue his true goal; to hunt down and slaughter as many surviving Jedi as he can find.
Darth Vader #19 opens with Vader successfully tracking down Eeth Koth, a Zabrak who left the Jedi in disgrace during the Clone Wars. Needless to say, the encounter doesn't go well for Koth, and Vader returns to Coruscant successful in his mission to kill Koth and take his newborn, likely Force-sensitive child. It's a chilling introduction to the issue, but it leads to a fascinating scene in which Vader and his Inquisitors ponder the fact Jedi are becoming increasingly difficult to find. There's even a brief scene in which five names are shown - Jedi who have been confirmed to survive Order 66, and are of particular interest to the Dark Lord of the Sith.
The Five Surviving Jedi
The list is in Aurabesh, and it's also back-to-front - because readers are looking at the hologram from behind. Still, that hasn't stopped Star Wars fans from working out five of the names. The top one is the least surprising; it seems Vader is still hunting for Yoda. But the next two are particularly interesting; Oppo Rancisis and Coleman Kjac, both of whom served in the Jedi Council.
Rancisis is a Thisspiasian male, and he was on the Council through most of the Prequel Era; as such, he actually appeared in all three of the Prequels. In the old Expanded Universe, he was one of the Jedi's most skilled tacticians, and proved a tremendous asset during the Clone Wars. In contrast, Coleman Kjac only became a member of the Council during the Clone Wars, and was one of the Council members who expelled Ahsoka Tano from the Order. Although he was on Coruscant for Revenge of the Sith, it seems Kjac managed to get offworld. Interestingly, he also survived in the now non-canon Expanded Universe too.
These may simply be Easter eggs for the fans. Alternatively, Charles Soule may be hinting at future plans for the Darth Vader series. After all, these are two members of the Jedi Council, the best and brightest of the entire Order; one of them has previously been treated as a skilled tactician. The fact these two names are mentioned straight after Yoda's suggests that the Empire view them as among the greatest threats to their order.
There are two more names on the list as well; Selrahc Eluos and Ka-Moon-Coli. These are new characters, but they may well just be something of a joke. "Selrahc Eluos" is an anagram of "Charles Soule," writer of Darth Vader, and "Ka-Moon-Coli" is a reference to the book's penciller, Giuseppe Camuncoli. It seems one of the perks of working on Star Wars is that the creative team literally get to turn themselves into Jedi.
Darth Vader #19 is available now from Marvel Comics.