Book Review: Darth Plagueis

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Darth Plagueis by author James Luceno, describes the rise of Darth Plagueis, the Master to Darth Sidious/Palpatine.  his discovery and “mentorship”.  It’s provides a great narrative that describes the source of Plagueis’ power and how he wields it to manipulate the galaxy to his own ends.

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The Star Wars Prequels aren’t terrible

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Look, I love Star Wars.  I’ve seen each of the Original Trilogy, perhaps, hundreds of times each (yes, I mean hundreds literally and in the plural).  But the the Prequels just weren’t as enjoyable.  In fact, they’re maddening.

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Ahsoka’s Rebellion

Ahsoka Tano was the heart and soul of Star Wars The Clone Wars.

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The Onderon Arc (Season 5, Eps 2-5 or 90-94 on Netflix) is perhaps the most insightful into how her character may have evolved in the advent of the Empire.  In this story, Ahsoka aids a group of rebels on Onderon to overthrow a king put in place by the separatists.  It gives her first hand experience on the personal and political toll to have their world and way of life taken over by a dictator. She observes significant personal sacrifice, the need for strong leaders, and a strong fighting force.

These are the same qualities we have observed through the first season of Rebels.  Kanan’s capture and torture is not unlike Saw Gerrara’s capture in the Onderon Arc.  And just as Steela disagrees with saving Saw (her own brother), so does Ahsoka/Fulcrum think the Rebels crew should not rescue Kanan.

We also see her face loss when she tragically loses Steela and is unable to save her.  So it begs the question if our set of Rebels will experience this same type of leadership loss as well.


The Vader Angle

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Perhaps the most intriguing element to her presence in Rebels is her counterpoint to Vader.  Perhaps two of the most consistent elements of a Star Wars narrative is the use of mentorship and the consistent parallel between good and evil.  Ahsoka’s presence in Rebels continues these themes and ratchet up the emotional backdrop of the series.

There’s a poetic element to her participation with the Rebel Alliance as it serves as a counterpoint to Vader.  Whereas Vader betrayed the Jedi Order and remained loyal to the Republic, she left the Jedi Order (peacefully) and has actively worked to undermine the Republic/Empire.

The biggest question we have for her character is if she knows that Vader is Anakin. It’s not clear how broadly aware this fact is.  As far as what may be generally known, all of the Jedi may have “died” in battle during the Clone Wars and Anakin, Yoda, and Obiwan may have as well.  The Emperor and Vader perhaps know Obiwan and Yoda lived (and that they may still live which may be why they’re still talking about killing younglings).  But it’s not clear what Ahsoka knows.

As an exercise in pure speculation, what could she know?  She perhaps received Obiwan’s message to avoid detection.  She may have even made contact with him (the argument against this is that Bail Organa knew Obiwan and Yoda lived and could be the source of Princess Leia knowing where to find Kenobi at the start of ANH).  In this contact, she may have found out about Anakin & Vader.  What does she think about this?  How does that effect whatever identification she has (or doesn’t have) as a Jedi or force user?

What we really want to know if she will fight Vader.  This fight would be one of the most emotionally charged encounters as could be found in the Star Wars Universe.  She doesn’t actually have to die (but probably would).  But we certainly know who wins.  And it would be epic.

While it’s not clear how much Ahsoka will be in Rebels, we certainly want to see how she is and what she has been up to.  We want to hear her thoughts on the Empire, what does she think about leaving the Jedi Order fifteen years later?  What does she feel about the Jedi being wiped out?  We want to learn these things and this discovery can only add to the drama of Rebels.