The best thing about Star Wars is the scope. The galaxy is big, and the timeline even bigger. To that end, look no further than the High Republic, the recent Lucasfilm publishing initiative focusing on an era long before any of the flagship Star Wars movies.
The High Republic era is a great way to start fresh and create a whole new cast of characters from a clean slate. However, there’s a slim chance a memorable character from the prequels may appear in a future High Republic work, thanks to a small detail in a crew interview.
The News — The latest episode of The High Republic Show, the companion YouTube series for the new initiative, showcases the minds behind concept art and illustration — including Jeffrey Thomas, Senior Illustration Manager at Lucasfilm.
Thomas chats about the honor of having such a collaborative space to design new aspects of the Star Wars universe, as well as revive old rejected designs. In the interview, Thomas sits in front of his computer screen, surrounded by his work — and that work is very notable indeed.
Eagle-eyed Redditor u/TheMastersSkywalker noticed the concept art on Thomas’ screen was something never seen before — a creature that looks eerily like Yoda, but with a fetching bob.
The concept art has prompted all sorts of speculation. Is this character from the High Republic era at all? Is this someone entirely new? Maybe one of Yoda’s ancestors? But one theory seems the most enticing.
What if this creature wasn’t just a new “Yoda,” but a “Yoda” we hardly got to know in the prequel trilogy?
Enter: Yaddle — Debuting in The Phantom Menace, Yaddle’s origins within canon are shady at best. According to the Star Wars Character Encyclopedia, she was born in 509 BBY, making her 477 years old at the time of her appearance in The Phantom Menace. Aside from that, all we know is that she became a Jedi, was brought onto the Jedi High Council, but was no longer a member when the Clone Wars began.
But what matters here is that Yaddle is canonically old enough to have gotten her start as a major Jedi during the time of the High Republic, which spanned from about 400 BBY to 82 BBY. While creatures of Yoda’s species age at a slower rate than normal (which is why Grogu is so darn cute at the wise age of 50), Yaddle would be at least 200 years old, still working her way through the Jedi hierarchy.
The Inverse Analysis — Forget Baby Yoda. Are we entering the Age of Yaddle? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe it’s a brand new character, or maybe it’s the most iconic member of this still unnamed alien species. But Yoda’s had plenty of screentime. It’s time for Yaddle to shine!
This Yoda lookalike may just be a rejected character thrown on the screen for fun, but on the off chance it’s a tease of a new character, we can hope against hope it’s the most underrated member of the Jedi High Council. Regardless, a new member of Yoda’s species would be a huge deal — a fourth individual to add to the iconic ranks of Grogu, Yoda, and Yaddle.