The High Republic storylines in the Star Wars universe are some of the most intriguing additions to the franchise that we’ve received in a while. Although most people are still focused on the Disney+ TV shows, like The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett, the Star Wars: The High Republic comic books (published by Marvel Comics) have managed to capture the hearts of Star Wars fans everywhere by telling a new story in new territories (separate from Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader) that’s faithful to the originals. Described as “a new era of Star Wars storytelling” and a story about the “golden age of the Jedi” that will not “overlap any of the filmed features or series currently planned for production”, these new books are a must-read for true fans and Star Wars comics fans.
What exactly is Star Wars: The High Republic?
Set in the time period 200 years before the events of George Lucas’s prequel trilogy (Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Episode II – Attack of the Clones, Episode III – Revenge of the Sith) and the Skywalker Saga Star Wars films, The High Republic is a collection of graphic novels, books, multimedia, art books (like The Art of Star Wars: The High Republic), audiobooks, manga (like The Edge of Balance by Justina Ireland and Shima Shinya) and comic books from Lucasfilm’s publishing department that is dedicated to expanding upon the Star Wars universe.
Of course, Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The High Republic comic books are considered canon, which means that it is counted as official Star Wars lore. The first issue of the comic series (written by Cavan Scott with art by Ario Anindito) was released on January 6, 2021, and was concluded over a year later with the release of its fifteenth issue on March 2, 2022.
With the completion of the series (phase 1), we’ve decided to take a look at the issues released and rank Star Wars: The High Republic comic books according to the best ones we’ve seen so far.
Star Wars: The High Republic Comic Books Ranked List
Star Wars: The High Republic: There is No Fear – Volume 1
Picking up after the events of the Light of the Jedi novel (written by author Charles Soule), The High Republic continues the story of Jedi Masters Sskeer and Avar Kriss. It also brings a totally new protagonist into the fray alongside a new galactic threat.
Volume 1 of The High Republic is an engaging read with a strong introduction to our new character, Padawan Keeve Trennis.
If you’re just jumping into the world of Star Wars: The High Republic, Keeve will serve as a good narrative point to keep you in the loop. The story also provides some context for the earlier developments that occurred in previous entries to the series. However, it does not paint a full picture.
The character of Keeve is a good audience surrogate as she shows an ability to grow throughout her journey. In the first issue, we see her take the final test before becoming a new Jedi Knight. She’s like a typical Star Wars protagonist with a strong connection to the force and a headstrong attitude. Her internal monologue provides a form of narration for readers over the five issues of this volume, giving us her perspective on the book’s events.
The comic also expands upon the Drengir’s threat and uncovers their sinister intentions as the main antagonist of the arc. There’s a lot of worldbuilding to be found, making the comic create an overarching narrative that is fun to follow.
The artwork of volume 1 is simply beautiful with great covers and vibrant colours.
Star Wars: The High Republic: Jedi’s End – Volume 3
This volume probably presents the highest stakes of any entry from The High Republic so far and it follows the difficult choices Keeve and Jedi Master Sskeer must make as they inch closer to the Nihil base. Sskeer insists that his Padawan must keep moving forward even though he’s in a bad state.
The events of this volume are sure to tug at your heartstrings. A lot of the characters in this arc are great and true to the spirit of Star Wars as a franchise. It also provides another point of view to the events of The Fallen Star High Republic novel (written by Claudia Gray). The Nihil plotline (especially the introduction of Marchion Ro, the menacing leader of the Nihil) is much more intriguing than the Drengir, yet it doesn’t detract from the overall solidity of Star Wars: The High Republic comic books and their collective coherence in storytelling.
The artwork in this comic is beautiful as usual, and Cavan Scott odes a masterful work with his writing in this entry.
The High Republic Adventures – Volume 1
This comic book series is written by Daniel José Older (who also wrote the young adult novel Star Wars: The High Republic – Midnight Horizon) and published by IWD publishing. The High Republic Adventures introduces us to the anarchic Nihil and showcases the looming threat to the Jedi Order’s peacekeeping initiatives.
The story follows Lula, Farzala and Qort who are inexperienced Jedi Padawans that are tasked with helping the inhabitants of Trymant IV in the wake of an attack by the Nihil. There’s another sinister plot ongoing that affects the lives of these Padawan and the Jedi order.
Ultimately, this volume shows us a side to Star Wars that we don’t often get to see, and that is how the Jedi Padawan handle their diplomatic duties in helping out the citizens of Trymant IV even when they are subversive.
The High Republic Adventures – Volume 2
In this comic, Farzala and Qort engage in a secret mission to join an ageing Jedi Knight in some peace talks with the Hutt crime family. Obviously, as Padawan and inexperienced Jedi, they are pulling far above their weight, so the potential for disastrous shenanigans shakes through the roof.
The comic serves as a nice look into the lives of budding Jedi that aren’t necessarily too aware of their inner balance with the force and other rules experienced Jedi are tasked to live by.
Star Wars: The High Republic comic books like this are charming and engaging reads for veterans and new fans alike.
Star Wars: The High Republic: The Heart of Drengir – Volume 2
The Heart of Drengir arc is an action-packed collection of newness that really zooms in on the beauty of the High Republic era of Star Wars. This volume mainly focuses on the conflict between Jedi and the Drengir, a plant-like species that wants to devour the universe. It continues with the story of Keeve Trennis, a Jedi Knight that goes through some events that ultimately ignite her development as a character.
In this comic volume, we also get to see a darker side to the Star Wars: The High Republic comic books. At a point in the comic, Keeve is aboard a Nihil marauder’s ship and her moral foundation is challenged in the process of navigating this whole new world she was blind to. This opens lots of doors for the future, keeping us gripped with the storytelling.
The artwork is stellar in this entry and is easy to follow along through the pages. Additionally, The Heart of Drengir arc further expands upon the significance of the High Republic phase, and it is fun to see how impactful the Jedi Order was in their prime.