Doctor Aphra #12 Review

by Ellie J. on July 15, 2021

Author: Alyssa Wong
Artist: Minkyu Jung
Inker: Victor Olazaba
Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg
Publisher: Marvel Entertainment

I said in my last review how the last issue of Doctor Aphra didn't really feel like a part of War of the Bounty Hunters, and how I liked that. I take it back. Or rather, I like that, but this is really damn cool and even better. I think the problem a lot of people have with big crossovers like these is that it always feels forced, like there's no real reason for all these series to be part of the crossover, but in only the second issue of it War of the Bounty Hunters proves why it's defying that narrative. 

In War of the Bounty Hunters #2 (check out my review!), Boba Fett infiltrates the Ball on Jekara and ends up recruiting Sana and Aphra to help him. Yeah, the same Sana and Aphra from this series. And this issue not only shows that scene happening verbatim, but expands on it by showing it from Aphra's perspective. It's so damn cool that Wong and Soule worked together on this, and it bodes very well for the rest of the crossover. But it doesn't feel contrived or awkward, because the events of the Ball mean something different for each character. (Spoilers ahead)

While in War of the Bounty Hunters, Boba's series, the arrival of Vader just means another rival to fight over Han (albiet a powerful one), it means something completely different for Aphra. Aphra, who was traumatized by Vader's several attempts on her life over the years. We get see her Aphra have a panic attack here when Vader arrives (in constrast to Boba's single remark about it), and I've never seen something so visceral portrayed so well in a comic like that. It just shows how amazing Wong and Jung are at this. I've neer seen a flashback sequence feel so horrifying and claustrophobic. Which is funny, considering every single issue of Pak's Vader series tries to do that and fails every time, while Wong got it in her first try here. 

The issue ends with Vader sensing Aphra's panic attack and turning towards her, indicating that shits' about to hit the fan in the next issue. This issue was... amazing. Possibly the best one yet of this run, since the previous two arcs really felt like they were either dragging or rushing. And some of the stuff I don't like is still present, like Just Lucky, who I just can't bring myself to care about. I do wish that some of Aphra's old supporting cast returned the way Sana did, but I get that's a new run and Wong wants to do something new with the character. But yeah, amazing issue! Amazing writing, amazing art!

Our Score:

10/10

A Look Inside