|Escape to Hoth
|Archie Goodwin et al.
|Dark Horse Comics
[US]; Boxtree Limited [UK]
|Stories published as:
Comic Strips (1981-1984)
Comic Book Series (1993-1994)
Graphic Novel (1995 [UK only], 1996)
e-Comic Book (2012)
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This is the final volume of reformatted LA Times
newspaper comic strips from 1981-1984 describing Luke,
Han, and Leia's adventures during the time between the
end of A New Hope and the
beginning of The
Empire Strikes Back.
Their previous rebel base has been destroyed and our
heroes must escape an Imperial blockade on the world of
the Mon Calimari in order to establish a new base on the
ice planet of Hoth.
This volume collates the following stories:
The Executor starts for Yavin, fighting
its way through the Rebel ships. As the Millennium
Falcon arrives at one of the battle aftermaths,
they see a scout ship racing away. Continuing on to
Yavin, they find a grieving Dodonna - Vrad is
believed lost. Suddenly Vrad's ship arrives, badly
damaged. Luke is suspicious - that is the same ship,
and it was not damaged then. Luke and Vrad are
selected for a near-suicide mission - using the
almost-out-of-energy power gem against the Executor.
When Luke voices his suspicions, Vrad and he take it
outside for a brawl. During the fight, Vrad lets it
slip that he fled the battle. Nevertheless, they
head out together on the mission. Vrad lands on a
barren planetoid, and announces he intends to
bargain with the Empire for the gem, and strands
Luke. Vader turns on his course toward the planetoid
to take Skywalker. Vrad takes off, with Vader in
pursuit. Han shows up, expecting that Vrad would do
this, and picks Luke up. With Vader trying to pull
the ship in, Vrad suddenly turns and attacks. His
suicidal ram weakens the Executor's shields
enough for the Millennium Falcon to damage
Yavin IV is in full evacuation. Vader calls
Griff, telling him to hold the Rebels off until he
can get there. Griff happily orders a first strike.
Meanwhile, a burned-out and tearful General Dodonna
promotes Luke to Lieutenant Commander. The last
transport takes off, but Dodonna is not on it. He is
in the base, waiting for the Imperials. He blows up
the base and the attackers, seemingly dying in the
process. (In reality, he is found and captured.)
Vader decides to hang back and let Griff handle the
situation. The Mon Calamari begins striking at the
Imperial blockade. Griff sees through the deception,
and moves to intercept the fleet. Leia sends Han out
to find an alternative escape corridor. He finds one
in an unstable star with many solar flares. As Griff
pursues the fleet, Vader prepares to meet the
escaping Rebels and crush them himself. The Millennium
Falcon moves ahead of the fleet so that Luke can
use the Force to guide them through the dangerous
area. Vader is about to meet them at the other side
- when Griff suddenly crashes into him, trying to
beat the Rebels himself. All three of Griff's ships
are destroyed; the Executor only weakened.
The Rebel fleet hyperjumps to the new base - Hoth.
While the fleet arrives at Hoth, the Millennium
Falcon is lost due to a busted nav computer. The
Millennium Falcon lands on a tropical world
to make repairs. Han is jumpy - every world they
have been on, something happens. In addition,
something does happen - Luke sees Tanith Shire.
However, it is not her - it is a woman named S'ybll,
who leads him to the ruins that is her home.
Alongside are empty stormtrooper armour and a
smashed shuttle. When Luke rebuffs her advances, she
disappears - and the Night Beast appears, attacking
him. Then a vision of Ben Kenobi, telling him to go
help S'ybll. S'ybll takes him to her bedroom, where
he finds his stolen comlink. S'ybll reveals her true
form - an old mind witch who wants to drain his
life. Luke proves too strong for her, and he breaks
free. She conjures up an image of Vader to stop
Luke's escape. Luke uses the Force to see through
her illusions, and she drains the last of her own
energies trying to stop him. The Millennium
Falcon travels to Hoth.
A New Beginning
Just as Han and Luke arrive, another ship
appears over Hoth, having trailed them. The Millennium
Falcon takes off again to lead the ship away
from Hoth, only to be shot at and tractored aboard.
The captain of the ship sends a message to Jabba the
Hutt, saying he has Solo. As the captain haggles
with Jabba, Jabba sends Boba Fett out to find Hoth.
Han comes out of the Millennium Falcon and
confronts the captain - Raskar. Han lies and says he
will give him the reward from Leia - on Ord Mantell.
Raskar thinks the reward is really on Hoth, and
demands to be taken there.
Han pilots the Millennium Falcon (with
Raskar aboard) down into a ravine on Hoth's equator.
He deliberately crash-lands the Falcon into a
cavern. Raskar sends his gang in to dig for the
treasure. They manage to find lumni spice, the
rarest spice of all - as well as a fire-breathing
breathing dragon-slug Han and Luke saves Raskar
from. They return to Raskar's ship, only to find a
ton of bounty hunters (including Dengar, Bossk,
Zuckuss, and Skorr), all eager to take Solo off
Raskar's hands. They fly off to Ord Mantell, to find
the Executor waiting in orbit. Fett is
dealing with Vader, promising him Skywalker in
return for Solo and the reward for both. Leaving
Raskar locked in the cargo hold of his own ship, the
bounty hunters take the Falcon and the
prisoners down to an abandoned moisture plant on Ord
Mantell. Skorr takes the news of Vader and Fett's
teaming badly, and tries to kill Solo. Luke takes
the opportunity to pull his lightsaber (that Skorr
is carrying) to his hand via the Force and slices
them out, allowing them to flee into the desert.
They double-back toward the Falcon, to find
Skorr waiting for them with blaster in hand. Han
jumps him, and Skorr ends up being shot himself.
Raskar shoots off the bounty hunters in his ship
long enough to let the Millennium Falcon
Synopsis taken from
Christopher G. McElroy's Time Tales, www.theforce.net/timetales.
These stories occurs approximately 3 years after the
Battle of Yavin.
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