ByKit Simpson Browne, writer at
Writer-at-large. Bad jokes aplenty. Can be gently prodded on Twitter at @kitsb1
Kit Simpson Browne

Now, with all the talk about prospective cameos in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (now less than 10 months away!), there's been surprisingly little suggestion of an appearance by a certain diminutive and green Jedi Master.

That's right - despite his apparent ability to appear in force-ghost form, and his close relationship with Luke, there's been barely a whisper about a cameo in the forthcoming sequel. Now, that may well just be because Lucasfilm have successfully kept it largely under wraps, but it's also entirely possible that we aren't set to see any more of the venerable Jedi in the upcoming franchise.

Which would be a shame, really - seeing as Yoda has proven time and time again that he's a fan favorite for a very particular reason: he's awesome.

"Obvious, that is."
"Obvious, that is."

And, as the (now non-canon, but still influential) Star Wars Expanded Universe has proved, he's had a whole lot of need to be:

Here, then, are five of the key elements of Yoda's life before the prequels...

1. His Home-Planet is a Mystery...

Legend has it that he was originally from a remote part of the outer-rim, though no-one knows exactly which planet he was from - or what the name of his species is. What is clear, though, is that he's not the only member of it to serve as a senior Jedi - other including the powerful masters Yaddle and Vandar Tokare, as well as the less experienced Oteg and Minch.

2. ...Though His Origin Story Isn't

At a young age, Yoda left his remote home-world with a human friend, seeking adventure (and employment). However, en route to the Core Worlds, their ship was hit by an asteroid, and they found themselves stranded on an obscure swamp-covered planet.

There, though, they met the Jedi Master N'Kata Del Gormo, who trained them in the ways of the force. By the time they were eventually rescued, they had become accomplished Jedi.

3. He Trained Many Students...

Though that would highlight the first of the two to the great tragedies of his life: that he would inevitably outlive almost everyone he ever knew.

After all, Yoda ultimately lived to be 900 years old, far older than any of his contemporaries could have expected to. The conservative Jedi Grand Master we saw in the prequel trilogy, then, may well have become so, in part, as a result of watching so many friends grow old and die.

4. More Than One of Whom Turned To The Dark Side

It wasn't just Anakin Skywalker who abandoned the Light Side of the Force - Yoda also had a hand in training a young man named Dooku, who would eventually lead the separatist forces as Darth Tyranus.

Throughout his lifetime, Yoda saw two of his students become two of the Republic he fought for's greatest foes - and yet, with Dooku defeated, it was the actions of Anakin Skywalker that would bring about the second great tragedy of his life:

5. He Saw the Destruction of the Republic Coming, But Didn't Realize It

Or, rather, a few hundred years before the rise of the Emperor, Yoda began to sense a disturbance in the force - one which suggested that the Dark Side was growing in strength.

Yoda, however, was the one who saw that this darkening might herald the imminent arrival of 'the Chosen One', who would bring balance to the force.

Little did he realize, though, that the arrival of this chosen one, in the form of Anakin Skywalker, would bring not the ultimate defeat of the Sith, but the destruction of almost the entire Jedi Order.

A kind of balance came - but only at the cost of thousands of lives.

And, so, Yoda was forced to hide on Dagobah, until, finally, Luke Skywalker's emergence gave him the chance to help the galaxy one final time - and to swing the balance of power away from the Sith once more.

What do you reckon, though? What else from Yoda's history do we need to know? Are there any other classic Star Wars characters with pasts that are worth hearing about? And will we end up seeing Yoda in Episode VII after all?

via Wookieepedia


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