Andor Episode 7 cameo reveals a huge link to A New Hope
A background character finds his way back to live-action.
One of the strengths of Andor is how it shows the exhaustive bureaucracy of the Empire at its peak. Everything is a trail of holocrons, data, and reports that flow from world to world. That was made especially clear in Episode 7, when Syril Karn gets a job monitoring fuel purity from a Space Cubicle.
But within one of these behind-the-scenes meetings, we see a recurring Clone Wars and Rebels character whose history traces all the way back to A New Hope.
In one of the first scenes of Episode 7, we see Dedra Meero in yet another Imperial Security Bureau meeting. But this one is different. After the Aldhani heist, there are bigger fish to fry than petty thefts and increased construction zone security. An executive officer lays out the consequences of the heist, but we aren’t immediately shown his face. You may not recognize him when we finally get a glimpse, but as confirmed by the credits, this man is none other than Wullf Yularen.
This is only the second time we’ve seen Colonel Yularen in live-action, but he’s been around since the very first Star Wars movie. In A New Hope, he was present in the boardroom when Darth Vader choked a fellow officer, and he perished when Luke Skywalker destroyed the Death Star.
But his story was far from over. Colonel Yularen also featured in multiple Clone Wars episodes as a Republic Naval Admiral. When the Republic fell, he was brought into the Empire’s fold. He soon joined the ISB, and he’s seen assisting Grand Admiral Thrawn with his evil schemes throughout Rebels.
His Andor appearance therefore makes perfect logistical sense, but it’s still surprising for two reasons. First, Andor has broken the Star Wars TV mold by not relying on nostalgia and familiar faces to sate viewers, instead introducing new characters, dynamics, and elements of the Empire and Rebellion you may not have considered before. Yularen is an exception.
Furthermore, this is the first time we’ve seen this character in live-action since 1977. Why a sudden return? Could he make more appearances in Andor as the Rebel movements gain infamy? He can’t really appear anywhere else; while his arrival would normally raise questions about whether he’ll appear alongside Thrawn in the upcoming Ahoska, the video game Battlefront II: Inferno Squad has dialogue that confirms he died on the Death Star.
The Clone Wars showed us how Yularen got his start, and we know how he meets his end, but now it looks like Andor could become a big part of his illustrious military career. Could he even become the main villain of the series? Maybe he’ll emerge as a ruthless hunter of rebels... or maybe he’s just a reminder to fans that the cruel bureaucracy of the Empire is full of former Republic officers who once had good intentions. With five episodes left in Season 1, we’ll learn his role soon.
Andor Episode 7 is now streaming on Disney+.