Darth Vader Returns for New, Darker ‘Star Wars’ Spin-Off

in Star Wars, Television

darth vader broken mask obi-wan season 1 finale

Credit: Lucasfilm

Disney is certainly giving fans a wealth of material to enjoy for this year’s May the Fourth celebration. Along with re-releasing films like Episode I: The Phantom Menacethe House of Mouse is treating Star Wars fans to a new chapter in the epic space opera… with an old friend in tow.

David Prowse as Darth Vader in 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Credit: Lucasfilm

Few villains have reached quite the status and immortality that Darth Vader has in the annals of pop-culture history as the face of the Dark Side. Although James Earl Jones has since retired from the role, Disney is bringing the man in black out of mothballs for one last triumph with Tales of the Empire.

Related: 25 Years Later, ‘Star Wars’ Brings Back Darth Maul for New Horror Project

The spiritual successor to Tales of the Jedi, Tales of the Empire, takes place shortly after the events of Order 66 and drastically changes perspectives to shift focus from the heroic Jedi Knights to the Sith Lords and imperial enforcers. The newest trailer (seen below) gives viewers a small sampling of what to expect but also confirms that Lord Vader will return for the upcoming series.

Star Wars: Return of the Sith

In the new series, the fates of Morgan Elsbeth and former Jedi Barriss Offee are entwined as the Galactic Empire rises to power at the end of the Clone Wars. However, as exciting as that concept might be, they are far from the primary reason for watching.

Related: ‘Ahsoka’ Gets Massive Update at Disney, Builds Suspense for Season 2

Tales of the Empire is shaping up to be the dark, mature, and graphic villain-focused series many fans have desired for ages. While the two leads will be a central point in the six-episode-long narrative, they are far from the stars of the show. Dave Filoni has struck gold once again and has reunited longtime viewers with iconic villains like General Grievous, the Grand Inquisitor, and Grand Admiral Thrawn, but no Dark Side roster would be complete without Darth Vader.

Vader Rising

Darth Vader, the iconic Star Wars villain, stands ominously with a glowing green background, highlighted by a halo of light that accentuates his imposing black armor and cape.
Credit: Lucasfilm

Given what we know from the trailers and what we can infer from previous Star Wars lore, this will be Vader in his early days as the Empire’s lead enforcer. We’ve seen the character at the height of his power, but not so much in his early days. In a sense, he’s still getting used to the suit.

Related: ‘Star Wars’ Offers an Explanation About Anakin Skywalker After Hayden Christensen Bids Emotional Farewell

Joking remarks aside, the Vader presented in this version will be the Emperor’s deadliest asset, squashing out any glimmers of resistance or rebellion before “a new hope” can arise in Star Wars: Rebels. This writer certainly can’t wait to see what kind of damage the Sith Lord is capable of as he leads the new Inquisitorius and chokes the galaxy into submission under the new regime.

The new series hits Disney+ on May 4, 2024, and it’s set to be one of the darkest entries in the sci-fi franchise yet. Here’s hoping Disney and Lucasfilm take us in a new direction so that all may know the power of the Dark Side.

Are you excited to see Vader back in action? Tell Inside the Magic what you think in the comments below! 


in Star Wars, Television

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