Star Wars: The High Republic, the new era of storytelling from Lucasfilm and Disney Publishing, will begin in the pages of Charles Soule’s upcoming novel Light of the Jedi, but that’s only the beginning. Later in 2021, Marvel Comics will debut its own title, Star Wars: The High Republic, by writer Cavan Scott. Working with artists Ario Anindito and Mark Morales, and taking advantage of the piles of concept art illustrated during the project’s long development period with Lucasfilm, the series will bring the world of the era, set 200 years before the start of the Skywalker Saga, to visual life.
At Polygon’s New York Comic Con panel focused on The High Republic, comics editor Susana Polo asked Scott about the arc of his story, which focuses on a new Jedi: Keeve Trennis. We also got a brand new look at pages from the comic.
“Keeve is a brand new Jedi,” Scott said. “Just after the Great Disaster, just before the galaxy starts to reassess itself after such a terrible event, she’s posted to Starlight Beacon [a massive space station, which is out in a vast, starless expanse of space, which literally acts as a beacon for travelers who are going out to the frontier]. Now, it was something that she never expected to do. She thought she’d be sent out to an outpost. She’s prepared for that life. And suddenly she finds herself with some of the key Jedi of the era, that the people she looked up to as heroes are now her peers, and so she has to cope with that, especially when she starts meeting some of the people that were involved in the Great Disaster and helped so many people in the Great Disaster.”
Cavan says that Keeve was one of the first designs that the Story Group came up with way back, long before the initiative was even known as the High Republic. Phil Noto first illustrated the Jedi in a battle stance, “And I sort of zeroed in on her and locked onto her. So in a way the character design was there first and helped me build her around how she looked.”
Like many of the Jedi in the High Republic era, Keeve has a unique way of seeing the Force. She visualizes the energy as a tapestry, or as Cavan describes, “this massive work of art that spreads across the universe, full of different threads and the sort of, the warp and the weft of the galaxy. The thing for Keeve is she’s yet to find her own thread in that and so she can feel overwhelmed by stepping back and seeing the big picture and not seeing how she fits into it.”
Minor spoiler: She fits into it with not one, but two badass lightsabers.
The High Republic is currently set to debut in 2021. It’s part of the first phase of storytelling from Lucasfilm and Disney Publishing — but it’s not the end. As announced during the panel, there’s a Phase 2 on the way, with new books and stories coming fans’ way.