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These Are the Most Major Changes in Star Wars Characters

Nothing embodies what fans love about the Star Wars universe more than the characters themselves. The galaxy far, far away is full of diverse alien species with differing natural strengths, and each character comes with a backstory as interesting as their alien origin. Iconic characters like Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader are referenced in everyday language by people who have not even watched the movies. Star Wars’ expansive universe gives fans a chance to look at characters over a lifetime in a way other stories do not. Here are some of the Star Wars characters that changed the most and why their progression matters.

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Boba Fett


Book-of-Boba-Fett-Jabba-Throne
Lucasfilm, Disney

Boba Fett has a moment in the spotlight thanks to the new Disney+ series, The Book of Boba Fett. However, his character in the new series is portrayed differently than it was in the original trilogy and comic books, where he served under both Darth Vader and Jaba the Hutt. Fans know him as a cunning and tough, and a ruthless bounty hunter–the only one who could hunt down and capture Han Solo.

In this new series, we get to see a different side to Boba Fett. He’s retired as a bounty hunter, and his new role calls for less action and more strategy, and maybe that’s a good thing, considering his old age. He spends a lot of time recovering in the bacta tank, a Star Wars healing pod. For the first time, Boba is quicker to negotiate than to fight. Boba’s transformation is valuable because it allows us to see a slower, more methodical side of the bounty hunter, which makes for a character type we do not often see in the Star Wars universe.


Darth Maul


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Time had the opposite effect on Darth Maul that it did on Darth Vader. Unlike Vader, Maul doesn’t get stronger and more fearsome the farther he turns to the dark side. After Maul’s defeat in The Phantom Menace, he seeks revenge on Obi-Wan Kenobi. Maul goes mad with his desire for revenge and spends his whole life consumed by his desire to find Kenobi. When Maul and Kenobi have their last battle decades after their initial meeting, Kenobi defeats Maul without even breaking a sweat. Maul embodies the warning which every Jedi teaches about the dark side: allowing emotion to cloud one’s judgement doesn’t guarantee power.

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Yoda is known for being one of the wisest Jedi of all time. With his incredibly long lifespan, it is no wonder that he has been able to amass so much knowledge. In the prequels, Yoda loved teaching young Padawans and was a confident fighter. After his loss to Emperor Palpatine, Yoda retreats to Kashyyyk. By the time Luke Skywalker comes seeking a teacher, Yoda has become disheartened and distant. Yoda transformed into the perfect mentor for Luke Skywalker, whose plucky optimism needed a reality check from this hardened master.


Ahsoka Tano


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Ahsoka Tano went from being widely hated to being among the most loved Star Wars characters of all time. This character was introduced in the Star Wars: Clone Wars series as Anakin Skywalker’s Padawan. She was rash, annoying, and disrespectful to our favorite Jedi masters. Over time, though, Ahsoka learned from her masters and became patient, tactful and wise.

Ahsoka’s journey teaches us what it means to become a Jedi, as her progression from immaturity to maturity shows the change that can take place during the Jedi lessons. It is a strong contrast to Anakin’s experiences that lead to his descent into the dark side. Now, Ahsoka Tano embodies the Jedi code better than her superiors despite being separated from the Jedi order.

Luke Skywalker


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20th Century Fox

In The Last Jedi, Yoda accuses Luke of always having his eye on the horizon. The boy who grew up on a moisture farm indeed seems to always dream of far off adventures. Luke Skywalker’s optimism proved to be his greatest strength in Return of the Jedi. His father, Darth Vader, helped Luke defeat the emperor because of Luke’s unyielding faith and inspirational optimism. However not every adventure he embarked upon had such a happy ending, and when Rey finds him, Luke Skywalker is old and weary. Luke’s character progression is something many fans disagree on, but Luke’s disillusionment with the Jedi Order balances out Rey’s belief that becoming a Jedi will satisfy her need for community and her desire to save her friends. Luke’s perspective gives her and us the opportunity to look at the Jedi Order holistically, examining both its strengths and weaknesses.


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Anakin Skywalker / Darth Vader


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Anakin Skywalker perhaps undergoes the most dramatic character arc in all of Star Wars. As the central character in the series, Anakin’s progression drives most of the franchise. Anakin comes from humble beginnings, but he grows to be a reckless, passionate and powerful fighter. Anakin turns to the dark side (and into Darth Vader) in an attempt to become powerful enough to save the people he loves, but he instead uses his power to destroy the Jedi Order.

Unlike Boba Fett and Darth Maul, Darth Vader did not grow weaker with age. He continued to hone his lightsaber skills and remained the most feared person in the galaxy for his whole life. Anakin’s fall to the dark side caused the whole galaxy to be cloaked in darkness for a time, but his return to the light allowed the whole galaxy to heal.



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