The Star Wars: The High Repubic line of novels and books are entering Phase III this fall. The Marvel Comics series Star Wars: The High Republic and Star Wars: The High Republic – Shadows of Starlight both pick up the storyline of the Jedi’s war with the Nihil space pirates with the decisive move by the evil space raiders: establishing the Occlusion Zone!
Star Wars Nihil Occlusion Zone Explained
(Photo: Marvel Comics)
The Occlusion (or Exclusion) Zone is a section of Star Wars’ Outer Rim Territories that the Nihil leader Marchion Ro has claimed as Nihil territory. The ten sectors of space on the Galactic Frontier were sealed off behind an energy barrier, which prevent any access to hyperspace travel lanes, and effectively prevents any comings or goings that the Nihil can’t counter with brutal force. The innocent people caught behind the barrier are given a “choice”: consider themselves Nihil and abide by the laws of the group, or be viewed as an enemy. The Jedi are deemed the biggest enemy of the Nihil and their territory, to be outed and eliminated wherever found.
In both High Republic Phase III comics, we get a harrowing first picture of how the Jedi, Republic, and citizens of the Outer Rim all react to Nihil establishing the Occlusion Zone. Shadows of Starlight follows the High Republic’s central protagonists – Jedi Masters Avar Kriss and Elzar Mann – as they try to deal with the pivotal destruction of Starlight Beacon (and their closest friend, Master Stellan Gios). The Occlusion Zone falls over the Outer Rim when Avar is searching for the Nihil, trapping her inside. Seven months pass in the comic as Avar tries to evade the Nihil and survive long enough to be rescued.
The main High Republic comic examines the Jedi response outside the Occlusion Zone, as Mann tasks Jedi Knight Keeve Trennis and her twin Jedi allies Terec and Ceret with disrupting a meeting between the Nihil and the Hutts over a potential alliance. Needless to say, the mix of Jedi, gangsters, and pirates does not end peacefully.
How Ahsoka Teased The Occlusion Zone Arc
Star Wars: Ahsoka Episode 4 had High Republic fans sitting and pointing like a Leonardo DiCaprio meme. Ahsoka Tano’s (Rosario Dawson) duel with Dark Jedi Baylan Skoll (Ray Stevenson) on Seatos included runes which, when decoded, made mention of the Nihil Occlusion Zone. It was implied that the pathway from the Outer Rim Territories to where Grand Admiral Thrawn and Ezra Bridger were stranded in the next galaxy, passed through the Nihil’s Occlusion Zone. Not a major tie, but another nice way that The High Republic and its happenings are being woven into the larger Star Wars Universe.
Star Wars: The High Republic Phase III and Star Wars: The High Republic – Shadows of Starlight comics are now on sale.