We knew it had to be coming at some point, but today was the day: we got our first look at Yoda in The High Republic!
The new publishing initiative that is launching in January is set 200 years prior to the events of The Phantom Menace, so we knew that Yoda would have been a key player in the Jedi at that time. After all, he tells Luke in The Empire Strikes Back, “For 800 years have I trained Jedi.” So while it makes perfect sense that the earliest promotion for this era would be about the new characters we’ll meet and who will take center stage, we knew Yoda had to be involved somehow.
And so today, Star Wars revealed our first glimpse at Yoda from this period. They revealed that he will “feature prominently” in the IDW comic series Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures, written by Daniel José Older. “The High Republic Yoda is a journeyman out in the galaxy,” Older told StarWars.com.
Older also said, “While he’s already a respected member of the Jedi Council at this point, we meet Yoda in IDW’s The High Republic Adventures series doing what he loves best: looking out for the young folks — in this case, a group of Padawans traveling around the galaxy to learn the ways of the Jedi with a hands-on approach. The Force study abroad program, basically.”
So it sounds to me like Yoda will be pretty similar to the wise Jedi Master we know, but it sounds like he’ll be a bit more hands-on with training younglings in this period. We knew that was something that he was always super involved with (and we see it in Attack of the Clones), but presumably Yoda’s attention was drawn to other duties as well by the time of the prequels. It sounds like here he is freed up a bit to focus on younglings and traveling with them, training them.
It’s also noteworthy that Yoda is “already a respected member of the Jedi Council,” but honestly that shouldn’t be too surprising. After all, though this is set in a brand new era, for a guy who is 900 years old when we meet him in the films, a 200 year difference isn’t huge. So he’s already 700 at this point, so it would be really surprising (and probably unwise) to have Yoda not be on the Council here. What isn’t clear, though, is whether Yoda is the grandmaster at this point or not.
To top it off, StarWars.com released two concept art images of Yoda from this time period. He looks very similar, but has new outfits and a slightly different look to account for the time difference. Additionally, it was revealed that Iain McCaig, who did a lot of concept art for the prequels, helped contribute significantly to Yoda’s look here, which is really cool.
Here’s the images of Yoda, released by the Star Wars website: