If you thought the battle was over, the Empire is about to prove you wrong.
For years after the canon re-set following Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm, we were in the dark regarding the events between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. With the announcements of Star Wars: Aftermath and Shattered Empire, we were promised some answers but they’ve come painfully slow. Today in an official interview with Shattered Empire writer Greg Rucka, we learn a bit with what the series is about and who it follows.
So, does Shattered Empire follow Luke, Han, and Leia?
They will be in it, but it will follow a husband and wife team of Kes and Shara Bey. They both fought for the Rebellion during the Battle of Empire.
“Shara flies, Kes is a ground-pounder, and a very experienced one. So, they have spent more time apart than together, and they’re in the Outer Rim world where the Imperial presence is felt, and they’re hoping that they can bring an end to this. But they’re both very tired veterans, and they come out of [the Battle of] Endor with the elation that we see in [Return of the Jedi]. ‘We’ve won. It’s over.’ — only to discover that, no it’s not. The Empire was huge.” Despite the fireworks, despite the funeral pyre of Darth Vader, despite the joy on Endor, the Empire is far from broken.”
How much fight does the Empire have left?
Greg gets into that. Obviously, some people will flee the Empire’s service, but far more will lock down on their territory, possibly leading to the birth of the First Order:
“The Empire still has resources. The Empire still has an enormous fleet.They may be in disarray post the Battle of Endor, but to think that in that vacuum people aren’t stepping up [is shortsighted].
“All these people are not about to go, ‘Oh, well, I guess we were on the wrong side. It’s over, then.’ [Laughs] There’s a Moff out there who’s like, ‘Right. I’m emptying the bank accounts, I’m changing my name, and I’m going to Aruba.’ You know there is. But for every Moff who does that, there are five who say, ‘Like hell am I leaving this post. We’ve got stormtroopers for a reason. You get out there and you shoot every last one of these upstart insurgents, these terrorists, and you make clear to them that the rule of law still stands.’ So it does get ugly.”
Rucka also drew from real world inspiration such as the Soviet Union and North Korea:
“The other thing that I tend to look at is propaganda,” he says. “Who controls the airwaves? The Empire does. So, the Rebellion can be jumping up and down, and screaming at the top their lungs, ‘Palpatine is dead!’ But I guarantee you, that message didn’t reach 70 percent of the galaxy. It’s a rumor. It’s a whisper.”
So, what will we see of Luke, Han, and Leia?
Rucka confirms we’ll see Luke (possibly in battle), Leia, Lando, Han, and Chewie despite the focus being on Shara. Rucka does allude to a certain scene for Leia we may see in another story, but will not appear in Shattered Empire.
What scene for Leia would that be?
If you recall, Leia only recently heard about her true heritage in Return of the Jedi. She thought she was the daughter of Bail Organa all these years, only to learn Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker is her real father. That’s something she’s going to have to deal with:
“There are moments that we don’t get to see that we know have to have happened. If I do a good job and they like me, hopefully one day I get to write the scene where Leia goes to Mon Mothma and says, ‘So, it turns out you knew my mom?’ You know? That’s a great scene.
“When you start to think about it and you think about what Leia now knows coming out of the Battle of Endor, she’s got a lot on her plate. I mean, she’s got a lot on her plate, both as a war leader and as a politician following the Battle of Endor. But in the midst of all that, she’s got to reconcile the fact that her biological father is directly responsible for the destruction of the people that she’s always believed were her family, of her mother and father, of Alderaan, and everything else that Vader did. And once you start unpacking that, you’ve got this story of Padmé Naberrie, who is Padmé Amidala. That leads, inevitably, and it doesn’t have to be a big moment, to her going, ‘Wait a second,’ and that scene where she’s got to turn [to Mon Mothma] and say, ‘You were there. She was your friend. Who was she? I want to know.’ That’s a hidden scene. Someday, somebody will write that scene. That scene is not in Shattered Empire. There is an insinuation that that scene has occurred. I tried very hard to respect the canon and the logical extrapolations of it.”
Hopefully down the line we’ll see Luke and Leia deal with their ancestry together. Until then, the first issue of Shattered Empire will be out September 2nd, 2015.