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Prequel Problems: Rogue One

Hendryk

The sunlit uplands are just around the corner
Published by SLP
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France
What Rogue One really did for me, and why I like it so much, was what I would term "implicit worldbuilding." Much like how the Lower Decks episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation received a lot of praise because that episode made the Enterprise seem less like, "there's the crew on the bridge, and then there are hundreds of people lacking personality or history and literally just exist to be killed from time to time," and more like every single individual on that massive ship were the protagonist in their own story, had their own background, their own motivation, etc. It added that texture, made you for one moment feel that those houses on the matte painting were more than just the hasty work of an underpaid art student intern, but rather homes where people lived, worked, met with friends, called theirs.
That's the reason why, scattershot though they were, I liked books such as Tales from Jabba's Palace and Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: they gave every creature half-glimped in the background while the heroes did their thing its own personal backstory. It's something I like about good worldbuilding, you could take any cameo and they potentially have their own character arc. (And maybe that's why despite my geek friends' best efforts, I was never sold on Tolkien--rightly or wrongly, it never felt to me that the people in the background are potential characters in their own right, just nameless masses to bask in the grandeur of the Real Heroes).
 

neonduke

Very perverse themes expressed
One minor thing but I believe the film implies (or outright states, been a while) that Andor was actually a child soldier for the Separatists during the Clone War before switching his allegiance to the Rebellion, which I thought raised some interesting questions on the formation of the Alliance for the Restoration of the Republic and its original make-up.
 

OwenM

The patronising flippancy of youth
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One minor thing but I believe the film implies (or outright states, been a while) that Andor was actually a child soldier for the Separatists during the Clone War before switching his allegiance to the Rebellion, which I thought raised some interesting questions on the formation of the Alliance for the Restoration of the Republic and its original make-up.
IIRC he refers to having "been fighting the Empire since I was five" (or maybe six, been a while for me too) which given his age suggests he's using the Empire in a way that includes the Republic because he doesn't see a difference.
 

Von Callay

Kept After Class by Mrs. MacBrayne
One minor thing but I believe the film implies (or outright states, been a while) that Andor was actually a child soldier for the Separatists during the Clone War before switching his allegiance to the Rebellion, which I thought raised some interesting questions on the formation of the Alliance for the Restoration of the Republic and its original make-up.
This is all complicated to a degree by the extent to which we are supposed to believe Palpatine manipulated literally everyone and everything going into the Galactic Civil War, but there is absolutely continuity between the Separatists and the Rebels. The CIS was in a lot of ways a cynical effort by the powerful trading companies and banking guilds and other corporate interests, but it was also absolutely something that blew up because there were lots of planets with legitimate and long-standing grievances against the Republic and that system. The fact that so much of the CIS's top brass were non-human aliens also folds into the Empire's human supremacist New Order, where the Imperial system kicking the stuffing out of aliens just for being there ensures that the people resisting the Empire continue to look a lot like the people who tried to tear apart the Republic, which invites a lot of skepticism from people about just what this 'Alliance to Restore the Republic' actually wants.
 

varyar

giver of existential dread
Patreon supporter
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This is all complicated to a degree by the extent to which we are supposed to believe Palpatine manipulated literally everyone and everything going into the Galactic Civil War, but there is absolutely continuity between the Separatists and the Rebels. The CIS was in a lot of ways a cynical effort by the powerful trading companies and banking guilds and other corporate interests, but it was also absolutely something that blew up because there were lots of planets with legitimate and long-standing grievances against the Republic and that system. The fact that so much of the CIS's top brass were non-human aliens also folds into the Empire's human supremacist New Order, where the Imperial system kicking the stuffing out of aliens just for being there ensures that the people resisting the Empire continue to look a lot like the people who tried to tear apart the Republic, which invites a lot of skepticism from people about just what this 'Alliance to Restore the Republic' actually wants.
IIRC, the Essential Guide to Warfare spent a good bit of word count on that continuity between CIS hold-outs and early Rebels. I think there was a difference of opinion on grand strategy among the Rebels, too - try to take and hold territory, Separatist style, or adopt guerilla hit and run attacks instead.
 

frustrated progressive

SLPing Through the Cracks
which invites a lot of skepticism from people about just what this 'Alliance to Restore the Republic' actually wants.
This factor may also help explain how so many Imperial officers who served the Republic never dream of defecting to the group promising to revive it-even laying aside fear, personal advantage in the new system, ideological belief in the New Order, or blind careerism, it could be that many dislike what the Empire's become, while still seeing its enemies as the separatist/rebel scum they've been fighting against for decades now.
 

Thande

UP THE WORKERS & Ukrainians
Published by SLP
This factor may also help explain how so many Imperial officers who served the Republic never dream of defecting to the group promising to revive it-even laying aside fear, personal advantage in the new system, ideological belief in the New Order, or blind careerism, it could be that many dislike what the Empire's become, while still seeing its enemies as the separatist/rebel scum they've been fighting against for decades now.
Aaron Allston did this in "Starfighters of Adumar" with Admiral Rogriss, who indeed dislikes what the Empire's become, but sees the Imperial Navy as having continuity with the Republic's institutions (albeit this was in that vague pre-Episode II time where they thought the Republic had a military) and the Rebels as trying to tear it down.

Of course, Occam's Razor: the reason why Andor says he was fighting the Empire before the Empire existed is because the writers of a multimillion dollar budget film couldn't be bothered to spend five seconds looking up the timeline.
 

OwenM

The patronising flippancy of youth
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Aaron Allston did this in "Starfighters of Adumar" with Admiral Rogriss, who indeed dislikes what the Empire's become, but sees the Imperial Navy as having continuity with the Republic's institutions (albeit this was in that vague pre-Episode II time where they thought the Republic had a military) and the Rebels as trying to tear it down.

Of course, Occam's Razor: the reason why Andor says he was fighting the Empire before the Empire existed is because the writers of a multimillion dollar budget film couldn't be bothered to spend five seconds looking up the timeline.
IIRC they do have a point of Jyn having had a clone trooper toy at a young age as well, which given her parents' politics I assumed was meant to be from when the Republic still existed.
 

Archdeacon of Dunwich

That's Except for Posters in Scotland
This is all complicated to a degree by the extent to which we are supposed to believe Palpatine manipulated literally everyone and everything going into the Galactic Civil War, but there is absolutely continuity between the Separatists and the Rebels. The CIS was in a lot of ways a cynical effort by the powerful trading companies and banking guilds and other corporate interests, but it was also absolutely something that blew up because there were lots of planets with legitimate and long-standing grievances against the Republic and that system. The fact that so much of the CIS's top brass were non-human aliens also folds into the Empire's human supremacist New Order, where the Imperial system kicking the stuffing out of aliens just for being there ensures that the people resisting the Empire continue to look a lot like the people who tried to tear apart the Republic, which invites a lot of skepticism from people about just what this 'Alliance to Restore the Republic' actually wants.
The Count Dooku origins audio-drama - alongside the new Master And Apprentice series by Claudia Gray both seem to be suggesting that there might have been some sort of secession even without Palpatine. All of them show that whatever promises the Republic (and the Jedi) had made with the Mid-Rim and Outer Rim planets had been basically eroded, and that if you were a world in the Core region you were already on your own. (That way it makes it less Palpatine did everything and more that he took advantage of a time when the Republics institutions were already collapsing under the weight of corruption*)

Even the fall of Dooku is less Palpatine's original machinations and more the fact that he ended up collapsing under the weight of trying to govern Sorenno. (Dooku having becoming disillusioned with the Jedi Order after an attempt at race-fixing by a fellow Jedi High Council member had led to the death of his brother (who was first in line for the Count of Sorenno.))


*The Jedi also had a number of major scandals during the 30 years before the Clone Wars.
 

varyar

giver of existential dread
Patreon supporter
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Even the fall of Dooku is less Palpatine's original machinations and more the fact that he ended up collapsing under the weight of trying to govern Sorenno. (Dooku having becoming disillusioned with the Jedi Order after an attempt at race-fixing by a fellow Jedi High Council member had led to the death of his brother (who was first in line for the Count of Sorenno.))
Dooku telling Palpatine to piss off and still going on to lead the Separatists is my favorite Star Wars WI.
 

Archdeacon of Dunwich

That's Except for Posters in Scotland
Dooku telling Palpatine to piss off and still going on to lead the Separatists is my favorite Star Wars WI.
I suppose without Palpatine, the Separatists wouldn't end up with the support of the syndicates trade federations. On the other hand, it means the Separatists would be more willing to try to negotiate first (since it's the trade federations that want to make war as that leads to profits), which would allow the Jedi to step in as their traditional role of peace-makers and perhaps find a solution to the problem.

Now according to the High Republic novel series, part of the relationship between the Republic and the Jedi is that the Jedi are to have small outposts throughout the galaxy to help provide assistance to the citizens. By the time of Dooku's fall - a few years before TPM, they had largely disappeared - but in a world where the Separatists are negotiating with the Jedi perhaps the Order would once again start building outposts in the far off areas.

And if there is more of a Jedi presence, that means they are also more likely to identify force-sensitive children while also combating the scourage of slavery in the Outer Rim. Or in other words, Tatooine gets a Jedi Outpost, the Skywalkers get freed from slavery and Anakin becomes a well adjusted Jedi Master.

There I've solved Star Wars, and it still allows Palpatine to be an evil genius, just one who fails because the Jedi and Republic actually listen to the warnings rather than ignore every single one for decades.
 
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