Marvel’s new Star Wars crossover event, Vader Down, is pretty much all about reminding us that Darth Vader is not a Sith Lord to be trifled with. And while Vader does get some nifty moments in the event’s second part, the best moment comes thanks to a member of the comic’s amazing supporting cast.
Spoilers ahead for Darth Vader #13, by Kieron Gillen, Salvador Larocca, and Edgar Delgado.
First off, you should know that Vader is still a complete badass in this issue, the best example being when he annihilates an entire army of Rebel troops by detonating a soldier’s pack of thermal detonators.
But the real stars in this issue are the supporting cast of Vader’s ongoing solo series: Doctor Aphra, a rogue archeologist who finds herself working for Vader, and her hilariously bloodthirsty droids BT-1 and Triple Zero. BT-1 and Triple Zero are essentially the evil version of R2-D2 and C-3PO, especially since they’re an astromech and a protocol droid, respectively. However, the similarity ends there, as these droids want to destroy all humans, and have the firepower to do so.
Aphra and the droids land on Vrogas Vas in an attempt to extract Vader after his crash landing, but having learned it was Luke who took Vader out, they instead go on the hunt for Vader’s foe to curry favor with Vader. Triple Zero just wants to save time by bringing Vader any old blond kid:
Aphra has a much sneakier idea.
Enter Luke, who’s investigating some Jedi ruins on Vrogas Vas with R2 after his own crash landing. They’re merrily going on their way when Threepio appears out of nowhere, glad that his master is safe. Luke’s relieved for the company, until this happens:
Insert your Admiral Ackbar gifs here, because it’s a trap. Triple Zero + Gold spray paint = Killer C-3PO.
I would like an entire comic series of just this idea, please, preferably ending in a climactic protocol droid showdown between Triple Zero and Threepio. But for now, I’ll take a murderous protocol droid any time I can get it, really.