Star Wars #43
January 1981
"The Empire Strikes Back: Betrayal At Bespin", 17ppg, $0.50

Writer, Editor: Archie Goodwin
Artist: Al Williamson
Artist: Carlos Garzon
Letterer: Rick Veitch
Editor-in-Chief: Jim Shooter
Colorist: Glynis Wein-Oliver
Assistant Editor: Danny Fingeroth

CHARACTER

Treva Horme (unnamed, solomahal on Bespin)Featured
Chewbacca, Han Solo (frozen in carbonite), Princess Leia Organa Solo, Luke Skywalker

Supporting
Yoda, Boba Fett, Lando Calrissian

Villain
Darth Vader

Other
Lobot, Cloud City citizens

Cameo
George Lucas (unnamed, on Bespin in goggles and parka), Obi-Wan Kenobi (as spirit)

DROID
C-3PO (See Threepio), R2-D2 (Artoo Detoo)

LOCATION
Bespin, Cloud City, carbon freezing chamber, Dagobah

ORGANIZATION
Stormtroopers, Wing Guard

SPECIES
Solomahal

STARSHIP
Millennium Falcon, X-wing starfighter

VEHICLE
twin-pod cloud car

COMMENTS
This issue continues the official six issue adaptation of Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back.

Includes five pin ups from the Star Wars Universe. The pictures include Terry Austin's take on the Heroes in a Hoth cave; Walker Scouts in Action by Michael Golden; C-3PO Being Blasted by John Byrne; Yoda in the Swamp by Marie Severin; and Luke and Vader Duel by Frank Miller.

The splash page is a new page briefly giving the events of the previous issue. Page 15 is all new in this issue, and not presented in any of the previous versions of the story.

Issue #41 credits the cover art on all issues of the Empire adaptation to Al Williamson and Carlos Garzon.

This issue features the column Star-Words with letters from Kenneth Paxton, Chris Larson, Bill Midyette, Gary Dunaier, & Shelly Reinhard.
SYNOPSIS
The Millennium Falcon cruises towards Cloud City, a floating Tibanna Gas mine above the planet Bespin. Han knows the proprietor, Lando Calrissian from his smuggling days. They are not greeted with the warmest welcomes as a twin-pod cloud car fires a warning shot at them. Han sets down on platform 327 hoping that Lando has forgotten about something in their past, which Chewbacca reminds him of. Lando Calrissian, a suave con-man, seems to be upset with Han, but quickly change his tune, and warmly greets his guests. The wander through the city, while Han explains to Lando why they stopped here. Threepio has wandered away from the group after hearing an R2 unit nearby, but instead finds something else. The last thing he hears is the sound of laser bolts.

Meanwhile, on Dagobah, Yoda leads Luke to an ominous tree, strong with the Dark Side. He instructs the young Jedi to enter, but to not take his weapons with him. Luke ignores his master's warning, and takes his lightsaber anyway. Luke is confronted by a vision of Darth Vader, that he easily strikes down, but the ghastly Dark Lord's helmet shatters revealing the visage of Luke, shocking young Skywalker.

As Cloud Cars whiz by the Bespin apartment being used by Han and Leia, Leia wonders if Han has seen Threepio. He wants to organize a search party, but first he tells Leia how nice she looks and gives her a kiss. Chewbacca enters with a pile of parts that used to be Threepio. Han suggests that Lando fix the droid, but Leia doesn't trust him. Lando interrupts them and invites them out for some refreshment.

Shaken by the encounter at the tree, Luke has a vision of his friends on Bespin. Yoda tells him it's the future that he sees, but tells him he needs to decide how best to serve them.

Lando leads the rebels through Cloud City, telling them about his issues with the Empire and how he has made a deal that will keep them out of his hair forever. As they enter the dining room, they are confronted by Vader and Boba Fett. Han fires his blaster at Vader who deflects the bolt with his hand. Using the Force, Vader pulls the gun from Solo's hand and asks them to join him.

Luke wakes from a troubled sleep, having another vision of his friends in trouble. He decides he must leave to help them. Obi-Wan and Yoda warn him that he his not ready and that he is susceptible to the Dark Side. He promises to remember everything that they have taught him and be careful. As Luke's X-wing rockets away, Obi-Wan fears things will get worse and that Luke is their last hope. Yoda confides that there is another.

Han Solo screams, as Boba Fett voices his concerns about his bounties treatment to Darth Vader, who admits no permanent damage will be done. Lando feels that he has gotten the short staff in the agreement, since Chewie and Leia are not convinced to Cloud City. In their detention cell, Chewbacca is making some repairs to Threepio, but has gotten his head on backwards. Lando enters to try to explain the situation to Han, how they are actually bait laid in a trap for Skywalker, but Han will have none of it. He lunges at Lando punching him in the jaw before being clubbed by the Security guards. Lando stalks out.

A stormtrooper informs Vader that an X-wing fighter is landing. Vader finishes his tour of the Carbon Freezing Chamber, noting its crudeness. Lando feels that this process might kill Skywalker, so Vader orders test, on Han!

Luke makes not that there are no patrols on his way to the City, but lands anyway. Solo is brought into the Freezing Chamber. Vader promises Fett that if he doesn't survive, the bounty hunter will be compensated. Chewbacca rowrrs his concern for his friend and Leia finally admits her love. Han promises that he will be back and he is then lowered in to the Chamber and encased in carbonite. Lando winces at the sight of his friend being put through this.

Elsewhere, Luke enter the facility warily, girding himself for what lies ahead.


Related Issues
Marvel Special Edition featuring Star Wars, Volume 2 #2 Marvel Super Special #16 Marvel Comics Illustrated Version of The Empire Strikes Back Star Wars (Marvel) #39 Star Wars (Marvel) #40 Star Wars (Marvel) #41 Star Wars (Marvel) #42 Star Wars (Marvel) #44 Classic Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back #2


Trade Paperbacks and Alternate Covers
Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago... #2 The Original Marvel Years #1 The Empire Strikes Back Trade Paperback The Empire Strikes Back – The Special Edition Trade Paperback A Long Time Ago Trade Paperback #3 The Empire Strikes Back Trade Paperback (Wal*Mart DVD Edition)
Star Wars (Marvel) 43 (direct market edition) The Empire Strikes Back #5 (StarWars.com)



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