A new era begins at Lucasfilm Animation with the announcement of Star Wars Resistance!
A major announcement shook the Internet and the Star Wars community this past week with the first details of the next project from Lucasfilm Animation; Star Wars Resistance! Only a few sentences at best, but it’s a brief look at what to expect from this series debuting this Fall on Disney XD:
StarWars.com is thrilled to announce that production has begun on Star Wars Resistance, an exciting new animated adventure series about Kazuda Xiono, a young pilot recruited by the Resistance and tasked with a top-secret mission to spy on the growing threat of the First Order. It will premiere this fall on Disney Channel in the U.S. and thereafter, on Disney XD and around the world.
Voice talent for the characters on the show include Christopher Sean, Rachel Butera, Bobby Moynihan, Donald Faison and Oscar Issac and Gwendoline Christie who will be reprising their roles as Poe Dameron and Captain Phasma. And the all-star cast is backed up by an all-star production team. Created by Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels) the series includes Executive Producers Athena Portillo (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels), Justin Ridge (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels) andBrandon Auman (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) with Art Direction by the incomparable Amy Beth-Christenson (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels).
With only a tease at what’s to come, there are so many questions just begging to be speculated on!
Just When Is It?
Lucasfilm and Disney are finally ready to start filling in the gap between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens that has been relatively closed off to storytelling. It allowed the sequel trilogy to gain a foothold and retain some of the mystery needed for The Last Jedi, but now those lingering questions about the early stages of the First Order and of the Resistance may just get the attention they deserve.
There have only been a few forays into this time period in the way of a couple of novels and an ongoing comic series. The Leia-centric novel Bloodline by Claudia Gray took place approximately six years before the events of The Force Awakens and touched on the growing threat of the First Order. It ended with the formation of the Resistance after the New Republic fails to take any meaningful precautionary measures against the coming conflict. In the synopsis that came out for Star Wars Resistance, it is made clear that the Resistance is already around so presumably this will take place some time after the events of that novel. An ongoing Marvel comic series, Poe Dameron, also takes place before The Force Awakens but is much closer to the film than this series should be.
Poe will play a part in this series, Oscar Issac is providing the voice for his character, as will the intimidating and shiny Captain Phasma. With Phasma already a part of the First Order, canonically this puts Star Wars Resistance after the second novel from this time period–2017’s Phasma by Delilah S. Dawson.
With the First Order already at play, the skills of Kazuda Xiono, the shows protagonist, are needed for a special mission to gather valuable intel for the Resistance.
This leads into the next major question for the series.
Where In The Galaxy?
A new series and a new spot in the timeline translates to new locations as well as some more familiar ones sprinkled in for good measure.
With the current home to the Galactic Senate on the planet of Hosnian Prime as seen in both Bloodline and The Force Awakens, it’s a good guess that some of the series may take place there as well. A chance to learn more about the state of galactic affairs during this time before the governments imminent destruction at the hands of Starkiller Base.
But Star Wars Resistance aims to show viewers the rise of the First Order and that means that it’s likely to take place in the Unknown Regions.
The Unknown Regions is an area of inadequately explored and mapped space on the edges of the known galaxy far, far away. What is known up to this point is that the remnants of the Empire of old retreated to this mysterious region in the years following the Battle of Endor. Much of the media released prior to The Force Awakens focused on what led up to this event. The Battle of Jakku and the signing of a peace treaty known as the Galactic Concordance saw the Imperials defeated but many escaped and followed a plan laid out by Admiral Gallius Rax to regroup out in the expanse of the Unknown Regions. But nothing is known as to what happened after that. Kazuda’s orders will be to perform reconnaissance to asses just what the Empire has been up to all these years.
It’s a great opportunity to tie together a few other pieces from canon into a bridge between the two trilogies.
With Filoni’s two previous endeavors, Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, he did not shy away from tackling some major plot elements concerning the more mystical aspects of the saga. Gaining great insight from working side by side with the Maker himself, George Lucas, Dave Filoni can philosiphize with the best of them about all things concerning the Force.
But does that have a place in Star Wars Resistance? Should it?
Star Wars: The Clone Wars stayed true to its namesake by primarily focusing on just that. The Clone Wars. But within that time of conflict some story arcs delved deep into some heavy material involving the Force, the Jedi, the Sith and the prophecy of the Chosen One. Becoming less about the Clones and the battles at the front line as the series progressed. It went the same way with Star Wars Rebels. The show did cover the Rebellion getting off the ground and the various Rebel cells coming together to form an Alliance but also deepened the lore of the Force and the Jedi Order.
Star Wars Resistance, as the name implies, will cover stories surrounding the splintering of the Resistance from the New Republic and the recruitment of others to its cause. As with most Star Wars the Force is ever-present. Even in Rogue One, a film not explicitly about the Jedi or the Force, it was weaved in without it taking over or becoming the central theme. That method would serve Star Wars Resistance best in order to preserve the awakening of the force in Episode VII.
Fans of Star Wars Rebels were treated to ongoing stories from Star Wars: The Clone Wars bleeding over and tying in directly in both a meaningful and powerful way. Threads from the previous show were further fleshed out and tied up in the more recent series. Does that set a precedent for Resistance?
There is much that was left unresolved at the end of Star Wars Rebels and this could be the perfect way to continue some of that story. In the finale alone, Ezra Bridger and Grand Admiral Thrawn vanished into hyperspace with the popular theory that they were launched out into the Unknown Regions. Heck, Filoni even confirmed that in his head, they are still alive. After the Battle of Endor, Ezra’s friends, Sabine and Ahsoka, set out to find him and bring him home. Since it’s a safe assumption that some of Star Wars Resistance will take place in the Unknown Regions this is would be an amazing fit.
Ezra is out there. Ahsoka is alive. These are enormous plot elements that deserve to reach their own climaxes. Hera and her son, Jacen Syndulla, are also presumably still fighting for the Republic so it’s a chance to touch on them as well.
In Poe Dameron, Leia has tasked Poe with tracking down Lor San Tekka, the mysterious figure cut down in the first moments of The Force Awakens. He has knowledge of Luke Skywalker, Kylo Ren and the Jedi Order. But who is he? Perhaps that could be explored as well.
And honestly, there is a host of characters introduced in the comics, novels and even in Star Wars Battlefront II that would fit in during this time.
Sinjir Rath Velus. Iden Versio. Cardinal. The list could go on and on. Make it happen!
Will Luke Be Seen?
What isn’t known yet is how much does the Resistance know about Supreme Leader Snoke at this point? Has Ben Solo already been seduced by him?
These are arguably the largest holes waiting to be filled in the sequel trilogy era. Who is Snoke and how did he come to power? The backstory behind the mystery that is the Supreme Leader was cut drastically short (pun intended) but many are still hoping to learn just where he came from and how long he has waited in the shadows. This could be the way to continue his story while leaving Ben Solo the main villain now for the films.
What were Luke’s adventures before taking on students to train? These questions too deserve their answers, their day in the sun. Chances are that Resistance will take place after the destruction of Luke’s Temple so it’s doubtful that anything concerning Luke and his self exile will be touched on.
But if it does, does that mean that Kylo Ren is off the table? It’s more likely that his early missions for the First Order would fit into the format of the series here. A journey from follower to enforcer and the right hand of Snoke himself. Now that’s a story.
Remnants Of The War Machine?
The Empire retreated into the shadows never to be seen again.
Everyone knows now that isn’t the end of their story. The Empire evolved. Was restructured and refined into the mighty First Order. But just how mighty is it? The films have showed off some of their military strength but with aims to retake the galaxy more is needed.
This could be a look at just what forces the First Order has been able to amass out in hiding. Starkiller Base must have been a massive undertaking but it’s doubtful the Order put all their eggs in one basket so to speak. By showing the extent of their technological might it could easily help lead in to wherever the story picks up in Episode IX. Just what are the remaining members of the Resistance are up against?
Much of the design aesthetic of the First Orders deadly fighting force is not too far from the Imperial war machine of old. To say they borrowed would be an understatement. But understandably there would be other designs tested out over the years. New fighters. Trooper armor probably went through multiple variations.
And that means new toys, toys, toys!
The most exciting prospect is meeting the new cast that will be central to Star Wars Resistance.
Right now it’s just one. Kazuda Xiono.
Young. Pilot. Spy.
That’s all Lucasfilm has let out for the moment. Where is she from? How has she been inspired to join the Resistance? Has she been raised on the war stories and tales of heroes such as Leia Oragana, Han Solo and Luke Skywalker?
It’s going to be quite the wait till the Fall release but there is plenty to speculate on. And Star Wars fans do that like no other.
Have fun with it!
Mike Harris hails from the suburbs of Chicago and has been a fan for most of his life. Working as an industrial radiographer and raising a family with his wife take up most of his time, but there’s always room for Star Wars books and podcasts! Just looking to give back to Star Wars and the fan community, it’s been a source of fun and learning for him for so long.