With the announcement of the new Star Wars animated series, Star Wars Rebels (see article here), our imaginations started running wild. What really entices us for this series is that Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) and Simon Kinberg (X-Men: First Class, Sherlock Holmes) will be spearheading the new show. Throw in producer Greg Weisman (Young Justice, Gargoyles) and our collective expectations are pretty high. What amazed us about Star Wars: The Clone Wars was its ability to blend pre-existing characters and new characters into the Star Wars mythos. Filoni was also quick to dive into the pre-existing concepts that never made it to the big screen. Everything and anything was ripe for the picking. We, here at Mania, are sure that Darth Vader, Grand Moff Tarkin, the Emperor, and Boba Fett will all make an appearance in Star Wars Rebels. However, what Rebels will take center stage? So, with that in mind, these Rebels are characters we want to see in Star Wars Rebels.
*Writer’s Note: The hardest part about picking characters in the time between the prequels and the original trilogy is both relying on the expanded universe and ignoring it. There are great characters there but are all their “histories” official cannon?
General Jan Dodonna
Here is a character that was only briefly shown in Episode IV. We know that he was a General at the Battle Yavin, but what is his real story? According to “Star Wars the Essential Guide to Characters” (1995) by Andy Mangels, Jan Dodonna was one of the best Star Destroyer Captains in the days of the Old Republic. He was deemed too old for service in the new Imperial Navy and his execution was ordered. The Rebels got to him first. Now, whether or not the Star Wars Rebels writing team relies on this backstory, this grey haired old General in “A New Hope” deserves to have his complete story told.
General Crix Madine
He might have had mere moments of screen time, but he was still a member of the Rebellion. His backstory is said to be one of a celebrated commander and top notch commando. He felt as if it was better to “change someone’s mind than eliminate them”. A philosophy of that nature does not earn points with a brutal leader like Palpatine. This Corellian switched sides with the help of a few friends that had already defected. That backstory, alone, makes him a character we want to see in Rebels.
The Senator who defied an Empire and whose daughter followed in his footsteps. The planet, Alderaan, should be a major setting in the Star Wars Rebels. Were they really peaceful? Did they have weapons there? Bail Organa’s appearance is almost a necessity in the interim between Episodes III and IV. What could truly be a great twist on the his story is if he did, in fact, save any of the Padawns. Zett Jukassa’s demise might have been Bail’s second or third trip back to the Jedi Temple.
Wedge’s history in “Star Wars the Essential Guide to Characters” is a sad one where he is orphaned and left a huge inheritance. He begins his own business and starts repairing ships for the Rebellion. Not much of a backstory, but still one that could easily be flushed out on the new series. Wedge looks to be about the same age Luke (in Episode IV), but Dark Horse’s new Star Wars comic indicates that Wedge is one of the most trusted and seasoned pilots in the Rebellion. What made this wealthy man get into an X-Wing and fight the Empire? Wedge is a character ripe with possibilities and one who might not have to show up until season three or four.
The Mon Calamari were enslaved by the Empire for their skills in constructing space cruisers. When last we saw Ackbar, he was merely a Captain in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Years later, he would be imprisoned and made the personal servant of Grand Moff Tarkin. That is a great starting point for Ackbar’s character as well as the introduction of Grand Moff Tarkin. Here are two sides of a very different coin who both become major players in the fate of the universe.
She has her big speech in Return of the Jedi before the Battle of Endor and then she disappears. Currently, Brian Wood is giving her some panel time in Dark Horse’s Star Wars comic, but, even there, she is in the shadows. Long did fanboys and girls think that Mon Mothma would get screen time in the prequels. Her scenes were cut, but she did get an action figure produced, though not one of her from Return of the Jedi. Her story is long overdue.
Admiral Firmus Piett
Piett quickly rose through the ranks of the Imperial Navy. That much is evident. However, what if Firmus Piett was a rebel at the beginning? Piett’s history (according to Star Wars Wikia) is extremely bland. What if Filoni, Weisman and Kinberg make him a Imperial Spy working with the Rebels-- a double agent, if you will. It would be interesting to see his relationship with Darth Vader at the very beginning. It would also be an incredible plot device to have a true Rebel among those rebelling that felt as if the Republic or Empire was worth fighting for. Who better than Piett?
Her fate, at this point, is unclear. When she walked away from the Jedi Temple, she endeared herself to the fans forever. The same fans that scorned her appearance at the beginning now love the only padawan of Anakin Skywalker. Her story is cannon, yet how did it end? Ahsoka’s appearance on Star Wars Rebels is not a necessity, yet any fan of Star Wars: The Clone Wars will constantly be looking for that older version of her we saw in “The Mortis Trilogy”. Did she succumb to the Dark Side? Will she stay in hiding? If she is found, will her Master come calling?
The time frame for Star Wars Rebels is still in question. Will it be months after Darth Vader has been christened? Will it be set during the Jedi Purge? What we do know is that there is 18 years between the birth of the Skywalker Twins and the destruction of the first Death Star. A character like Kyle Katarn is perfect for Star Wars Rebels. Katarn went to the Imperial Academy and became a Stormtrooper. He also became aware that he was Force sensitive. Now, imagine a green Stormtrooper who doesn’t agree with the mission and begins to feel the force. If not Kyle Katarn, then someone like him will make their appearance in Star Wars Rebels. Since the next trilogy probably won’t use any of the Expanded Universe characters, then perhaps this character placed here would satisfy the fans.