Remember that Black Series First Order stormtrooper being introduced at San Diego Comic Con? Well, aside from the packaging looking rather spiffy… it also contains some information on The First Order.
What information is that?
Check out this shot of the packaging:
If you’re having trouble reading the text on the picture, here it is:
“Shock troopers clad in white armor first appeared on the galactic stage during the opening battles of the Clone Wars. Clone Trooper armor became iconic almost immediately; its stark white design stood for hope that peace and stability might be restored to a galaxy of war. But this dream of peace died with the Republic, and the Empire that rose to take its place imposed order by any means necessary. Soldiers within the Grand Army of the Republic were given a new name: Stormtroopers. As these former protectors of galactic peace mercilessly crushed resistance across the galaxy, their white armor came to symbolize oppression and the indomitable power of the Emperor’s will. Yet the tyranny of the Imperial rule sparked rebellion, and the Stormtrooper legions were scattered in the aftermath of the Empire’s fall. Now, the rise of the First Order ushers in the next chapter of the Stormtrooper legacy as the new era of ruthless brutality begins.”
So, what can we tell from this info?
Well, first of all it’s nice that they mention the prequel era, as despite the actual trilogy’s creative quality it adds a lot of interesting stuff to the mythos. As a result, it’s good to see that the Clone Wars and the Republic are still being referenced (and hopefully will continue to be).
Second, the blurb specifically references the “Empire’s fall,” which can mean either one of two things: that the Empire was wiped out or had a steady decline in power after the Battle of Endor.
Which happened with The Force Awakens? Was the Empire destroyed or did it decline?
It’s hard to tell, but for dramatic purposes having the Empire completely destroyed wouldn’t post much of a threat to a strong New Republic/Resistance (unless, of course, the good guys aren’t strong either). It’s much more likely that some parallels to the old Expanded Universe will occur.
What happened in the Expanded Universe?
After the Battle of Endor, the Empire’s regional governors and Grand Moffs eventually carved out territory for themselves and became either isolationist states or waged aggressive (and ultimately futile) military campaigns against the New Republic. Imperial Remnant space declined due to the New Republic’s successful war of attrition until a peace treaty was signed.
What does the Expanded Universe tell us about The First Order with this new info?
It seems, like with Grand Admiral Thrawn in the Expanded Universe, someone (Supreme Leader Snoke, perhaps?) will gather up the pieces of the Empire and form The First Order, a seemingly fundamentalist version of the Imperial Doctrine.
If you’re curious about more info about stormtroopers, whether they be from the Empire or the First Order, check out our history of stormtroopers article.