Taking place before the video game series, Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic-War #1 follows the continued the adventures of Zayne Carrick; who is now in the midst of the war against Mandalorians as the Jedi take the field with the republic. Writer John Jackson Miller has taken some time out of his schedule to talk with us about the series and the inspiration to take the jedi to the battlefield…..
My previous 50-issue STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC series focused on the travails of Zayne Carrick, a former Padawan accused of a crime he did not commit, and his fight to clear his name. But while that personal story was going on, we also saw in that series that a war had started, between the Republic and the Mandalorians. The Mandalorians are a warrior movement, nomads who don armor and conquer planets just to show they can. We saw the opening year of that war in the previous series, but it was often just in the background.
Now, as the war enters its second year, we’ve brought it front and center. KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC – WAR provides a brand new starting point for readers, reintroducing Zayne Carrick as a draftee into the war against the Mandalorians. You don’t have to have read the earlier series to enjoy it — and indeed, there’s a different flavor. This is very much more a war series; Zayne’s left the moneymaking schemes of his criminal partners behind. But Zayne is still Zayne, and so he’ll continue to use his cleverness to supplement his own shortcomings as a warrior.
Your character Zayne Carrick is described as a coward by his comrades, but really he just good natured. Why throw him in as a draftee during the midst of a battle when his cowardice is well known by his superiors?
Some Republic Navy commanders don’t much worry about the well-being of the ground forces they’re working with — and that goes double for Zayne’s superior officer, who’is more than willing to throw draftees into the meat-grinder to further his career. And while some of Zayne’s immediate superiors think him a coward, that’s really only because, as you say, he’s not willing to kill in battle. This goes back to our previous series, which established Zayne as, if not a complete pacifist, someone who didn’t feel qualified to be making decisions about who should live and who should die.
And since Zayne will always be working to take the path that’ll hurt the fewest people, that makes everything he has to undertake in this series more difficult. It was going to be hard for Zayne to be a Jedi Knight given his feelings; it’ll be even harder for him to function as a soldier.
Some Jedi have decided to break their neutrality in this war. What inspired you to throw a group in willing to help the Republic?
The first KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC video game from Bioware established that a Jedi named Revan broke with the Jedi Council and rallied knights to help the Republic against the Mandalorians. That was told as backstory in the game, and we got to see it in the first comics series. Now, in our series, other Jedi are coming forward to help the Republic — like Dorjander Kace, who we meet in this series. While Revan’s story is well told in the new prose novel, Kace gave me the opportunity to explore the motives of another Jedi who’d decided to break with the Jedi order’s neutrality.
Zayne is immediately confronted with a critical moral choice, right in the first issue — but even he isn’t ready for the surprise that follows. Our first series (which is still available in nine trade paperbacks from Dark Horse) closed out its first issue with a major surprise; we have one here, too, and it really turns things upside down. And it’s not the only such moment. I think we’ve got a fun roller coaster ride here!
Readers can find out more about the series at the official DARK HORSE SITE(http://www.darkhorse.com) and also my own website (http://www.farawaypress.com), where I maintain a behind-the-scenes page for every comic book I’ve ever done. There’s a lot of fun background there. Readers can also follow me on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/jjmfaraway.
Writer: John Jackson Miller
Penciller: Andrea Mutti
Inker: Gigi Baldassini
Colorist: Michael Atiyeh
Cover Artist: Benjamin Carré
Publication Date: January 11, 2012
Format: FC, 40 pages