Andor is the Star Wars political drama we need right now

One of the first complaints from some fans about The Phantom Menace was the vague and slightly convoluted political scenario. Since then, the policy of star wars were left mostly vague with very clear moral and immoral characters. However, with Andor, the A thug An upcoming spin-off on Disney+, the convoluted politics of the galaxy far, far away might make a comeback at the right time.

No matter what one might think, star wars has always been political. Yes, George Lucas imagined a fantasy world of magic and adventure like the soap operas he used to watch in cinemas as a kid. Yet at the heart of this story is a deeply political conflict. The Empire is a fascist dictatorship that is subjugating the galaxy, while the Rebel Alliance is a well-armed group of freedom fighters trying to restore democracy. Yet Lucas also put his Vietnam War commentary in Return of the Jedi. In the prequels, Lucas then wanted to tell how the “good” Republic became the “evil” Empire. While the former is easy to remember, the latter is much more complex than some people expect from space wizard movies.

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Transcript of a lecture on history with George Lucas and writer Lawrence Kasdan appeared in a book about the creation of Return of the Jedi. When discussing the new Galactic Emperor character, Kasdan asked if, like Vader, he used to be a Jedi. “No, he was a politician. Richard M. Nixon was his name. He overthrew the senate and eventually took over and became an imperial type and he was truly evil. But he pretended to be a really nice guy. Lucas replied. The Watergate scandal was less than a decade before that, so everything was still fresh and raw in Lucas’ mind. Over the next 15 years, he decided to use the prequel’s story to show how “his Nixon” came to power.

Now that Lucasfilm is in the hands of the mouse, politics in the star wars the stories we received focused more on this clear moral delineation of “good” versus “evil.” Andor doesn’t look any different in that regard. The trailer released at Star Wars Celebration shows the Empire descending on what is presumably the village that Diego Luna’s Cassian Andor grew up in. A thug, when we meet Cassian, he kills a man who helped him rather than risk him exposing the Rebellion. The moral gray zone has come back in full force. Since the show will have a lot more time than the movie, we’ll see how Cassian becomes this man.

However, Cassian will not be the only one having to make difficult choices to survive. Geneviève O’Reilly is reprising her role as A thug and Revenge of the Sith as rebel leader Mon Mothma, who will “break the internet” in his debut. In Andor, Mon Mothma is still a senator, trying to use the political system to oppose the Emperor’s new dispensation from government. This means that the politics of the galaxy will not only be part of the story, but will be central to this character’s journey. There will be two seasons of Andor, and the producers say Cassian won’t “meet” Mon Mothma until the second half. Yet their stories will run parallel to each other in this first season. This means that the plot and emotional center of the series will be tied to galactic politics and politics.

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Viewers will be able to see, through Mon Mothma, the legislative process of how these supposed representatives are able to achieve their goals. The effects of this policy they imagine on Coruscant will likely manifest through Cassian’s story. This will be an opportunity for star wars to show how Imperial Propaganda Sausage is made. The Empire ransacks an innocent village for resources or just because they got in their way. In the Senate, the Emperor or his lackeys will boast of “making peace” by fighting “terrorists” or another word the great army calls the small army.

When someone approaches this kind of political world with strict morals, any opponent willing to lie wins. Cassian and Mon Mothma are going to have to step into moral gray areas not just to achieve their goals, but simply to survive. These kinds of choices make for interesting drama, but also provide an opportunity to take a closer look at exactly why the Empire is evil. It can also add some nuance to the rebellion, showing that they didn’t always make the brave or morally right choice. And it’s not just Andor who will examine this time in star wars the story, Obi Wan Kenobi will do it too.

These two new Disney + star wars the series sits between the prequel and the original trilogies, what Alec Guinness’ Ben Kenobi called “the dark times.” They also both feature protagonists who, while capable heroes, choose not to fight the larger evil. Instead, they sneak around, hide, and try to survive. Because we have all seen stories of how to bring down the oppressive system, we could use a story of how to survive in one. Not only that, but a story that shows how people close to defeat by a seemingly invulnerable enemy can find the will to fight and a ray of hope.

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These are difficult times for the world. As wars are fought online and in the physical world, the permanence of democracy seems less certain today than it was even when Revenge of the Sith ended (very temporarily) the saga. Lucas was warning his audience that democratic institutions that people take for granted can fail and be corrupted by those who claim to “love democracy.” Yet at the time, audiences may have missed that message because they actively took their real-world institutions for granted.

The idea that “art makes change” is beautiful but may not be entirely true. What good art can do is allow people to consider the issue at the center of real-world issues without explicitly exposing it. stories like Andor can be a gentle warning to the audience, while enjoying escape adventures from a distant galaxy, to keep an empathetic eye on the all too often tragic events happening in the world.

George Lucas built star wars nearly half a century to give people a modern myth. Mythic storytelling has used a whimsical metaphor to examine questions about our lives since people started telling stories. A story like Andorabout what happens when a democracy crumbles, is the kind of warning that might come in handy sooner rather than later.

You can dive into the political details of Star Wars politics when Andor debuts August 31 on Disney+.


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