Readers have no love for the catsuit, either; First look at Mara in the Essential Reader’s Companion

Not a lot of love for the catsuit round these parts this week. On Tumblr, Molly approached the outfit from a costumer’s perspective, and Ellen Hyde pointed out that it and the Jabba’s dancer outfit are the only Mara costumes recognized by the 501st – while you can get into the Rebel Legion with the green Visions of the Future getup, it’s not that many options. I realize the costuming organizations have to draw the line somewhere, but maybe the 501st will OK the Choices of One version one day?

But I do have a treat for you! Del Rey editor Erich Schoeneweiss has generously shared with us a piece of Mara artwork from Pablo Hidalgo’s Essential Reader’s Companion, which is due out October 2. It’s by Darren Tan and shows Mara’s first encounter with the Yuuzhan Vong in Vector Prime – and no, she’s not in the catsuit. Check it out under the cut.

And give a big thanks to Erich for sharing it with us! The Essential Reader’s Companion will contain lots of new EU art from Tan, Chris Trevas, Jeff Carlisle, Chris Scalf and Brian Rood.

UPDATE on 8/27: After our commenters revealed that Mara Jade’s lightsaber in this image is not the likely one she would be using at this time, Erich announced at Celebration VI that Darren Tan will be updating the image with the Anakin/Luke blue lightsaber.

32 thoughts on “Readers have no love for the catsuit, either; First look at Mara in the Essential Reader’s Companion

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  2. Erich

    Glad you all like it. Lucasfilm’s Jen Heddle and Leland Chee, author Pablo Hidalgo, myself, and especially all the artists put a lot of effort into trying to bring moments from the books to life in the paintings. When I approached Darren about participating in the book the first thing he asked me is if he’d get to paint the Yuuzhan Vong. If you like this one, just wait until you see Luke, Jaina, and Jacen surrounded by Shimrra and his slayers!

  3. kataja

    I love her outfit but even more I love her face/expression! She’s beautiful – but also visibly tough and guarded! I think it’s first time I see her so unforthcoming – I adore it!!!

    The hair, well, loose hair is still stupid in a fight – but when everything else rings, I can bear over with it ;-P

    This jumps easily into line with my fav pics of Mara!!!

  4. Lora

    Just as a side note the 501st does recognize other Mara costumes than the two mentioned, they just doesn’t have standards written for them (yet). I know there are at least two Black Nebula pilgrim disguise Mara’s in the 501st. Any costume with at least one good reference can now be accepted into the legion. (The Rebel Legion requires three references to a costume for formal status).

    I like her new suit; it fits her. :) But like kataja said above; loose hair? Really? I do martial arts and we are required to have our hair tied in some way, because it is not just impratical to have hair in your face, it can actually create dangerous situations both for yourself and a sparring partner. At least tie her forehead hair back or something.

    And last nitpick thing; why not her purple bladed lightsaber? Just something that left me wondering after looking at the picture.

    But it’s a cool picture and it captures Mara’s personality very well. :)

  5. Dunc Post author

    Lora: Thanks for the clarification on the costume club stuff.

    As for the purple bladed lightsaber… From The Last Command on, she carries the blue saber – it’s actually the one from Anakin that Obi-wan gave Luke. The purple/magenta is Emperor’s Hand era and was lost sometime before HttE.

  6. jawajames

    Like Paula, I am very eager to get my hands on this book! I really enjoyed the art in the Essential Guide to Warfare and am really looking forward to this one.

  7. Erich

    In fairness to the hair, it’s not like she knew she was going to be fighting a Yuuzhan Vong when she walked into that building. Sometimes poodoo just happens and you don’t have time for a scrunchie.

  8. Lora

    Dunc; I was under the impression she made her own (new) lightsaber after VotF. At least she carries a different saber than Anakin’s in Union (it’s purple bladed). And the above is not Anakin’s; the handle is all wrong to be that lightsaber. ;)
    I’ll admit I can’t remember all the details from all the books and comics, but wouldn’t it make more sense for her to use her new saber rather than Anakin’s old one after she build her own?
    Also during the Empire era there are pics showing her with either a magenta/purple or red lightsaber, so artists doesn’t always get it right. ;P

    And glad I could help with the costume stuff. :)

  9. Michelle Lunsford

    Add my approval to this outfit and this artwork – fantastic! Very much looking forward to this book.

  10. Nanci

    Regarding the purple lightsaber:

    Mara used it in one of the video games. The retcon says she made that one after TTT and used it occasionally, but mostly she used the blue lightsaber.

  11. Dunc Post author

    I don’t remember her using anything but the blue one in the post-TLC books… But I really can’t stand the magenta one, or video games for that matter. So even if the hilt is wrong, not really gonna worry on that point. Maybe she made her own blue one. ;)

  12. Random Comments

    But then what happened to Anakin’s? Maybe we need another Zahn novel to find out! Then again, maybe the artist drew the wrong hilt.

  13. Paula

    She has good hair. Most women would kill for that kind of body. LOL

    Besides she uses Force Spray. Holds every hair in place when you absolutely, positively have to save the galaxy from certain destruction.

  14. Dunc Post author

    Random Comments: But then what happened to Anakin’s? Maybe we need another Zahn novel to find out!

    They haven’t even MENTIONED what happens to it since Sacrifice in the novels, which irks me to no end. (Unless they did, and I missed it?) But I actually asked about this on Twitter the other day and couple of folks said that Wookiepedia says Luke had retired it and had it on display in the Jedi temple on Ossus.

    It took me FOREVER to find the entry on the damn thing which credits that bit to Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force. It really ought be linked on Mara’s page, but I’ve forgotten my Wook password and I’d probably do it all wrong anyway.

    Then again, maybe the artist drew the wrong hilt.

    Most likely explanation.

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