When the next era of Star Wars publishing begins with the “High Republic” initiative, we’re going to an unseen period of the galaxy far, far away, to a time when the Jedi were at the apex of their power. That means we’re going to need to get to know a few new Star Wars faces in the process.
Late last night, StarWars.com unveiled character bios for a few of the new Jedi heroes we’ll be meeting when the High Republic begins later this year. We’ve seen their faces in the concept art and tone trailers that kicked off the announcement of the new publishing program earlier this year; now, we have suitably Star Wars-y names to go with them, and a few character traits that are, essentially, that these people are really, really good. Not just at what they do with the Force or with a lightsaber, but...just as people.
There’s Avar Kriss, an icon of Jedi-hood. There’s the professorial Twi’lek Loden Greatstorm. There’s Stellan Gios, not just a childhood friend of Kriss and likewise stalwart Jedi, but owner of a very cool looking saber hilt. Even the “rebellious” figures among this revealed group, like Keeve Trennis and the Mirialan youngling Vernestra Rwoh, are exceptional examples of the Order, in awe of the revered elders around them in this adventure. Check them all out below:
I mean, they’re no Burryaga Agaburry, but what you gonna do?
Jokes aside, what makes these characters interesting is something that would, most times, actually be quite boring: They’re such goody-two-shoes. These people aren’t just Jedi, but paragons of the Order, the most revered, the smartest, the most spiritual, so pure and whole in their dedication to justice, the light, and each other. Hell, one of them is kid who’s so good at being good she’s already a Jedi Knight. It’s almost overwhelming.
Like I said, most of the time that would be inexplicably dull. But what makes it interesting here is that when you think about it, the Jedi we have met in the Star Wars movieverse so far aren’t exactly perfect embodiments of that heroic ideal. The Order of the prequels is beset by recalcitrance and hubris that ultimately destroys them, and the scattered remnant littered in its wake across the original and sequel trilogies are aimless wanderers—beset by doubts in their own ability to continue that idealized legacy, grappling with their own struggles to light the way on their own. Which is, from a dramatic point of view, fascinating to consider. But because it is what we know of the Jedi as far as the current set of movies is concerned, to see the opposite of that here—even it is as simplistic as “these are overwhelmingly good people”—is equally fascinating in turn.
We barely know these Jedi beyond this introduction—there could be some greyness as more of what we know about this new era of Star Wars unfolds before us. But the idea that what makes these new Jedi paragons so exciting to learn more about is simply their purity is an interesting one.
Star Wars’ exploration of the High Republic era begins with Charles Soule’s novel, The Light of the Jedi, currently set to release August 25.
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