Star Wars’ Sith will protect their knowledge and power at all costs, and Crimson Reign #5 proved that — with huge, flaming giants.
The following contains spoilers from Star Wars: Crimson Reign #5, on sale now from Marvel Comics.
“The Dark Side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural.” As part of the Tragedy of Darth Plagueis, it’s one of the most-known quotes in Star Wars. Palpatine used the story as a way to lure Anakin Skywalker to his destiny as the murderous Darth Vader. However, Palpatine’s words ring true on a much deeper level because they summarize the entire philosophy of the Sith. As enlightened beings and followers of the dark side, the Sith were only concerned with personal power. That philosophy meant protecting their Sith secrets at all costs.
Readers got a glimpse of the Sith’s obsession with protecting power in Crimson Reign #5 (by Charles Soule, Steven Cummings, Victor Olazaba, Guru-eFX, and VC’s Travis Lanham). The Crimson Reign series has been all about Qi’ra and her plot to overthrow Emperor Palpatine. She started a war between various crime syndicates, kidnapped the heir to two crime syndicates, assassinated Palpatine’s royal guards and robbed Fortress Vader. She planted seeds of chaos by recruiting Crimson Dawn members in every possible corner of the galaxy. Her most important plot, however, involved a Sith artifact. The problem was: it was heavily guarded by dark side monsters.
In Issue #5, Palpatine finally caught on to the fact that someone was personally attacking the Sith, not just the Empire at large. So, he teased out the information and found that Qi’ra was behind everything. This led him to put out an alert that Crimson Dawn needed to be destroyed. Although it was earlier than Qi’ra had hoped for, she initiated he plans and sent the Archivist and the Knights of Ren on a dangerous and important mission. Apparently, Qi’ra’s whole plan rested on their success or failure.
Exactly where they went wasn’t clear, but the issue left no doubt about one thing: the location was related to Sith. When they arrived, they entered a cave and were met with a horrifying sight. Monstrous figures were carved into the rock — stone sentries, guarding the secrets of the dark side location. Taking the Screaming Key, Ren surrounded it with his power in the dark side, and then, something awful happened.
The giants that looked like they were carved out of stone rose for the first time in thousands of years. The giants tried to protect the Sith secrets behind them by killing the intruders. Although one of the Knights died in the process, the Archivist made it to a specific spot and used the Screaming Key to deactivate the giants. When she did so, she found a mystical looking hourglass. What the artifact can do wasn’t explained, but Qi’ra clearly believed that it was essential in defeating Palpatine.
Because of the nature of the dark side, the Sith always went to the utmost lengths to protect their knowledge and power from those who would steal it. That’s why it often took more than one Force user to enter a Sith Temple. Likewise, most Sith locations were filled with booby traps. In Star Wars legends, Sith Temples and graves were filled with various deadly objects like: weighted plates, trap doors, lava pits, metal spikes, serpentine dragons and sentient warbeasts called Tuk’ata.
The idea of Force-imbued, flaming giants is new, though. So, the fact that they were guarding the hourglass proves that it must be a powerful artifact. It also further proves that the hourglass was Sith-related. If the hourglass was Ascendant related, for instance, the giants wouldn’t have come to life with the power of the dark side. So, it’s clear that Qi’ra is playing with fire (in more ways that one) as she continues to challenge Emperor Palpatine and his Sith powers.
Blake Hawkins has written TV and movie features and recaps for CBR since March of 2021. He writes about everything from NCIS to Stranger Things to The Walking Dead and everything in between. Mostly, though, he most enjoys writing about Star Wars. In fact, as recent graduate of Greensboro College’s honors program, Blake wrote his thesis on Star Wars and its religious connections. He now lives with his family in Lynchburg VA and is an avid outdoorsman. Feel free to contact him by email at email@example.com, or find him on Facebook.