Who is Saw Gerrera?

The latest episode of Andor introduced a new character to the show, but not to the Star Wars franchise. Luthen Rael heads to Segra Milo to meet with Saw Gerrera, a fellow rebel who leads a cell that’s fighting back against the Empire.

From the scene between Luthen and Saw it’s evident that Saw sees things differently and isn’t thrilled about partnering with others to accomplish his goals. It’s evident that Saw is more radical than most rebels we’ve seen and, well, that’s true. This isn’t the first time Saw has shown up in Star Wars before.

He was first introduced in The Clone Wars. As the war came to Saw’s homeworld of Onderon, he wound up leading a resistance against the Separatists, with whom the planet was aligned. He reached out to the Jedi High Council for help, and though the Jedi couldn’t directly get involved in fighting an Onderonian civil war (due to their willful alignment with the Confederacy), the Jedi didn’t leave them alone either. Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, and Ahsoka Tano traveled to Onderon to train Saw and his rebels in how to fight back. Saw and his fighters continued to fight and rally the people to their cause, and in the meantime Saw endured significant losses – most of all, the death of his sister, Steela, in battle.

The fight on Onderon continued until the very last days of the Clone Wars, and beyond. In the final days, as Kenobi and Skywalker were contacted by an agent codenamed “Fulcrum,” they assumed that it was Gerrera and that the siege on Onderon had taken a turn for the worse – but it was really Ahsoka, letting them know that Maul was on Mandalore (setting up the Siege of Mandalore). Not long after that, as seen in The Bad Batch, as the Republic was re-branded into the first Galactic Empire, Admiral Tarkin sent the Bad Batch to Onderon to kill Gerrera and his rebels, as a test of the clones’ loyalty. It was a breaking point for the Bad Batch, who refused to complete the mission, much to the chagrin of Crosshair, who would soon betray the group and remain loyal to the Empire.

Five years later, as seen in Jedi: Fallen Order, Saw was leading a resistance on Kashyyyk seeking to free the wookiees alongside Tarfful. He encountered Jedi Cal Kestis, who aided in the efforts. Saw and his Partisans during this period were traveling around the galaxy and fighting the Empire on a number of different planets, such as Kashyyyk here. Additionally, during this time (a few years before the events on Kashyyyk), Saw began caring for a young girl named Jyn Erso, whose parents were friends of his but who came into trouble with the Empire. Jyn would stick with Saw for years, until Saw left her behind, leading to friction in their relationship.

Much later, just a few years prior to the Battle of Yavin, as told in the novel Leia: Princess of Alderaan, an Imperial Moff, Quash Panaka (who had been the captain of Padmé Amidala’s security in The Phantom Menace, was assassinated, preventing Leia or her family from enlisting his help. Though nothing ever directly tied Saw to the killing, Leia and her mother knew that he and his Partisans were involved – showing the extreme lengths he was willing to go do.

In Rebels, set after those events, we again see Saw’s radical tactics as he confronts Mon Mothma for what he views as inaction and passivity in contrast to his tactics. Saw also was investigating the disappearance of the Geonosians on Geonosis, and he was aided by the Ghost crew in these efforts. They discovered that the Empire had gassed the creatures, killing them, and also learned that the Empire had been building something there – but didn’t know what. Unbeknownst to them, the Death Star had been constructed above Geonosis.

Then, just days prior to the Battle of Yavin, Saw Gerrera was on Jedha continuing the fight, but his methods continued to descend – including a torturous interrogation of a defecting Imperial pilot, Bodhi Rook. These events, seen in Rogue One, led to a reunion with Jyn Erso, and Saw showed Jyn the message that Bodhi was carrying: a message from Jyn’s father, about an Imperial superweapon that he had helped to build called the Death Star. but also included in the message was the information about how to exploit its weakness. Armed with this information, Jyn escaped the planet as the Empire ran a test of the station, but Saw opted to stay behind and not fight any longer. He was killed in the disaster on Jedha.

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