J.J Abrams just announced that the Jedi are no more in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and it seems like a fitting turn for an episode about quickening the end of days.
Star Wars has killed off a bunch of Jedi. It is unclear how many, but it is assumed that 8 out of the 9 original Jedi were killed in the film.
The Jedi Order will never be the same after a slew of Jedi personalities were murdered out in Star Wars (which we already know). The fact that it is set 200 years before the Skywalker Saga, at a period when the Jedi Order is thick and robust with members, and the light side of the Force is powerful, has been the major draw of the new Star Wars: The High Republic line. However, we know from the Star Wars Universe’s subsequent history that the Jedi’s golden age does not continue – and in Claudia Gray’s Star Wars: The Star That Has Fallen, the next High Republic book, we get the first genuine look of the Jedi’s first dramatic collapse in the High Republic period.
The Jedi Order and the Republic’s large Outer Rim outpost (Starlight Beacon) are invaded and wrecked by the Nihil pirate gang — at the direction of its commander, Marchion Ro – in Star Wars: The Star That Has Fallen. Starlight Beacon starts to plummet out of orbit, forcing the Jedi to rush to rescue the station and its numerous residents — as well as the millions of people on the planet below. It’s a life-or-death expedition, and not everyone gets to escape dying.
SPOILERS FOR STAR WARS: The Star That Has Fallen FOLLOW!
The Death of a Force-Eater
(Photo courtesy of Lucasfilm)
Marchion Ro needs to incapacitate the Jedi aboard Starlight Beacon in order to conduct his sabotage strike against the station. Ro discovered a new sort of monster that seemed to feed on Force energies in the previous book, Star Wars: The Rising Storm, and it’s the same beast that Ro smuggles onboard Starlight Beacon during the sabotage mission. This enigmatic being follows Starlight for days, disturbing the Force connections of every Jedi on board. While Starlight’s marshall Stellan Gios mainly overlooks the effects of tiredness, some Jedi are less certain and choose to investigate the disruption using the Force.
…And, like in any good horror film, the Jedi’s “I’ll be right back” method to finding the danger results in a large number of them being slain.
While scouring Starlight’s Cargo Hold, Jedi Knight Regald Coll (and his witty sense of humour) is taken out for the Force-eating creature. The hunt for Coll escalates when he is found dead and transformed into an ashen husk (much like Jedi Master Loden Greatstorm). Orla Jareni, a Jedi “Wayseeker,” and Jedi Knight Nib Assek, a Jedi Knight, are both slain and “ashed” by the Force-eater while searching the cargo hold for the Force disturbance; both had been important supporting characters in The High Republic, thus their deaths were unexpected.
The Force-eater only takes those two Jedi in the end, while other characters (Stellan Gios and Elzar Mann) come close to dying at its hands.
The Star That Has Fallen
The climax of Star Wars: The Star That Has Fallen finds Stellan Gios having to make a noble sacrifice: his own life to save thousands of others.
The Starlight Beacon is never able to stop falling and is on the verge of colliding with a populous city on Planet Eiram below. Stellan must remain onboard the station to manually maneuver the falling object towards the significantly less deadly terrain of the ocean, since only some thrusters on the station are still active. Stellan’s closest friends Avar Kriss and Elzar Mann confirm his passage via the Force once the incident is done.
But What If You’re Down But (Not) Out?
Two other major supporting characters of Star Wars: The High Republic also get left on death’s door in The Star That Has Fallen:
- Burryaga Agaburry – the beloved Wookiee Jedi seems to be murdered while facing a group of Rathtars brought onboard the Starlight Beacon by the Nihil. Burryaga’s buddy Bell Zettifar, on the other hand, refuses to accept he’s dead and continues to look for him.
- Bell’s new master, Indeera Stokes, is killed by the Force-eater in the same assault that killed Regald Coll. Indeera, on the other hand, is said to be waking up from her coma.
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