6 Star Wars Legends That Deserve Movie Appearances
Let’s keep the continuity wangsting to a minimum here. Yes, at this point we can tell that pretty much none of the main story beats or characters from the Thrawn trilogy are likely to appear in the official sequel trilogy. However, that doesn’t mean that certain locations, characters or themes from the now segregated Legends EU can appear or influence the new films. If Disney really is planning on making Star Wars a near-annual franchise between the sequel trilogy and the Anthology films, they might as well take inspiration from the VAST body of fiction and entertainment that has already been made in the Star Wars universe.
After all, it wouldn’t be the first time that elements first appearing in the EU made their way into the main films. Coruscant was first introduced as the capital world of the Empire and Republic before it in the Thrawn trilogy. Then it was incorporated into the prequel trilogy as a core location.
So, with that in mind, here are my pics for 6 elements from Star Wars Legends that deserve to appear in big screen Star Wars movies!
Zeltros is an Outer Rim planet home to the Zeltrons, a hedonistic near-human species known for their distinctive red-hued skin and pronounced empathic abilities. Zeltros is famous throughout the galaxy as destination of leisure and pleasure. Its native inhabitants partake in almost continuous revelry, and their pheromones and insistent amicability sway many visitors to join the party.
Modesty and monogamy are considered quaint and impractical among Zeltrons. Their empathic abilities create kind of a positive feedback loop of affection and happiness. They are quick to discourage and/or remedy discomfort, fear or anger of anyone in their midst. Perhaps partially due to this tendency, they were also known for being gullible.
Thinly veiled fan service? Yeah, pretty much. But I do think that the empathic intuition of the species could make for a fascinating character. We’ve seen plenty of exotic female aliens used as window dressing in Star Wars films before. Why not have a Zeltron, male or female, who understands that interpersonal positivity can foster sexual and emotional wellbeing? This might be a bit too visually or dramatically mature for the target audience of a Star Wars film, but it doesn’t have to be done in the most explicit sex scene kind of way. Think of the companions from Firefly.
Zeltrons and their homeworld mostly appeared in the early Marvel and Darkhorse Star Wars comics series. The most famous Zeltron character is probably Deliah Blue, a longtime companion and love interest to Luke Skywalker’s descendant Cade Skywalker in the comics. So far, the only canon mention of Zeltron in the new continuity has been a passing mention of a male Zeltron Jedi Padawan in the A New Dawn novel. So we can say that they at least exist in the new continuity.
Kyle Katarn started as a player protagonist in the Dark Forces and Jedi Knight series of video games developed by Lucas Arts and Raven Software. The Imperial defector turned Rebel mercenary turned Jedi knight became such a popular character that he appeared in almost all the major EU conflicts set after Return of the Jedi through various books comics and video games. He’s got the world-weary wisecracking act down to rival Han Solo and he’s got the personal conflict and legitimate character arcs to be a main hero in his own right. What’s not to like?
Since the events of Katarn’s life are woven so heavily into the post RotJ Legends continuity, having him appear in the new canon would probably require some reimagining. However, a backstory such as his is still certainly possible for a character. With the Force as ubiquitous as it is, an Imperial defector could certainly turn out to be force-sensitive. This starting to sound familiar?
Did I mention that Kyle Katarn was, in fact, a Stormtrooper before he defected to the Rebel Alliance? Could it be that Finn is already taking inspiration from Kyle Katarn? If Kyle Katarn himself is too much of a canon immigrant to appear in new Star Wars Movies, than I’d be more than happy to see Finn take the outsider-everywhere/cynical-respect-for-the-Force aspects of Katarn and run with it.
Exar Kun or any Ancient Sith Spirit
The allure of the Dark Side and the drive for power it instills in dark force users have inspired countless characters to seek some means of immortality, so that they may sway people and influence events throughout the galaxy beyond their mundane natural lives. One such villain was Exar Kun, notorious in and out of the Star Wars universe as one of the most powerful Dark Forces users in all Star Wars fiction. His story also has been told mostly in comics and novels.
Kun started out, like so many villains, as a promising Padawan in the Jedi Order four thousand years before the events of Episode 4 during the Old Republic’s reign. His curiosity, arrogance and short temper led him on a journey to discover ancient Sith secrets. Kun was driven and seduced to the Dark Side by the spirits of ancient Sith in his own time, Freedon Nadd and Marka Ragnos. This is some super-reader’s-digest here, but the upshot of Exar Kun’s devastating war on the Old Republic and the Jedi is that he was eventually defeated by his own redeemed apprentice Ulic Qel-Droma. Though he was believed killed at the time, Kun’s own spirit survived for millennia until it was finally exorcized from his tomb on Yavin 4 by Luke Skywalker’s New Jedi Order.
Much of the history of conflict between the Sith and the Jedi has stemmed from enduring Sith spirits finding new curious or aggressive Force users to influence. The appeal of characters like Kun or Nadd or Ragnos for films, that I see, would be to introduce the thoroughly extensive history and different aspects of this conflict to a wider Star Wars audience. The Jedi have been around for many thousands of years. For a lot of their early history they even used metallurgic swords with extraordinary properties before Lightsabers became so prevalent. Think of how cool it would be for a character to see what has (and hasn’t) changed with the Jedi and the Galaxy over the millennia! Doesn’t have to be Kun specifically, but an “Ancient Evil” could certainly take the form of a resurrected Sith.
So far in the films, we’ve seen the Force as a nebulous spiritual energy. Force users call upon it momentarily for supernatural power to achieve their goals, debate the merits and paths of the light and the dark and sometimes appear to lingering family or friends after death. We’ve never seen disturbances in the Force manifest visually around a person or location. We’ve never seen it in the kind of twisted rituals that Kun and his predecessors have enacted to achieve truly horrifying feats. The ritualism prevalent in the older Star Wars Legends may be weird, but this is Space Fantasy! Let the movies go as big and weird as they want so long as they make it work! Also ancient Sith Spirits could be a license to visit new and exciting Star Wars worlds like Ossus or Onderon or the Sith homeworld of Korriban.
Imagine a planet with more inhospitable swamps than Dagoba, more dangerous wildlife than Geonosis and more deadly native sentients than Tattooine and you’d get something close to Dathomir. Not only is Dathomir arguably the world of origin for Rancors but it is also home to a series of mystical Force-sensitive clans collectively called The Witches of Dathomir. The matriarchal clans are broken up mostly by regional nomenclature and although most of them are neutral or light-leaning in their practice, several clans known as the Nightsisters wield terrible arcane power through their adherence to the Dark Side.
Dathomir’s current status in cannon is kind of tricky. Before the second Clone War TV series, Dathomir had, again, only appeared in comics and novels and had sporadically appeared in major events in Star Wars history. When Darth Maul’s backstory was retconned for the show to make him a Nightsister orphan, Dathomir was brought into the new continuity along with him. It’s probably best if Darth Maul doesn’t reappear in the movies. But more rancors and treacherous planets and new kinds of Force users would certainly be welcome.
Imagine Dathomir as the sight of a final confrontation like Mustafar in Revenge of the Sith or the home of an exiled wise Force user like Dagobah.
Criminality is a fact of life in Star Wars. We’ve seen smugglers, pirates, thieves, spicers, gambler, fixers and slicers of all walks of life. Jabba the Hut has undoubtedly been our biggest exposure to the underworld of Star Wars but he’s really been the only major bad guy, with mooks and resources at his disposal, that wasn’t tied to the Confederacy, the Empire, or the Sith.
The Black Sun crime syndicate could be the first of its kind for Star Wars movie villains in that regard. A galaxy spanning network of informants, resources and muscle that could even challenge the Galactic Empire in its heyday. At least in the Legends continuity. Prince Xizor led the Black Sun at that time. Emperor Palpatine himself held a pragmatic respect for Xizor’s tremendous sway over events in the galaxy.
The Black Sun has also been brought forth into the new canon courtesy of The Clone Wars show. The events concerning the Black Sun during the Clone Wars changed in the details but the gist remained surprisingly similar. Palpatine and Darth Maul manipulated and intimidated the Black Sun leadership into furthering Palpatine’s scheme of dividing and conquering the galaxy.
According to a few new canon sources, the Black Sun continued cooperating with the Empire and still exists after the events of Return of the Jedi. Might we see the rise of a nefarious third faction in the fight between the Resistance and the First Order? Black Sun could certainly introduce us to interesting new aliens and challenges for our protagonists.
Besides the Sith and the Jedi, there’s probably no other unified group that has appeared as frequently in Star Wars fiction as Mandalorians. They adhere to a non-species specific culture that goes back many millennia and revolves around rugged self-reliance, familial cohesion and conflict as means of personal growth. Pretty much everyone in the galaxy regards Mandalorians as the most fearsome mundane badasses around.
For much of their history Mandalorians have sided with the Sith in major wars probably due to their shared drive for conflict. At one point in the Old Republic Mandalorians nearly conquered the galaxy themselves, but after the events of Episode 6, Mandalorians tended to side with the New Republic or the Jedi more.
Even though the culture is believed to have originated from one particular species, people known as Mandalorians grew to include members of numerous species, united in their practice of a way of life. Traditionally, they have been led by a single ruler bearing the title of Mandalore who has earned the respect of their people and who may command all Mandalorians to war. More recently, Mandalorians shifted away from warfare as a way of life towards bounty hunting and mercenary work instead.
Star Wars lore and fiction has fleshed out a respectably extensive amount of Mandalorian culture, including everything from clothing to customs to food and language. Even though he was never referred to as one in the films, Boba Fett was a Mandalorian. His distinctive T-shaped visor has been the visual hallmark of Mandalorian armor for thousands of years. Other Mandalorian characters have even appeared in the new continuity from The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels TV shows.
And of course everybody spotted that T-shaped visor and horned skull banner in the Episode 7 Trailer. I think it would be awesome to have the culture and the characters feature in a Star Wars movie, a dangerous, neutral faction that either goes its own way or may side with the Resistance or the First Order. Tension! A new mimetically badass bounty hunter for a new trilogy maybe?
Would you like to see these places and characters in the new slew of Star Wars films? Any that you would like to see more than these? Let us know in the comments!
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