Is the teased fall of the High Republic’s greatest Jedi Master the cause for the Jedi Order’s decline, long before Anakin Skywalker’s corruption?
Warning! Spoilers ahead for Star Wars: The High Republic #12
In the latest issue of Marvel Comics’ Star Wars: The High Republic, it’s teased that the Jedi Order was doomed to decline long before the corruption of Anakin Skywalker. This tease specifically comes from the current unraveling of Jedi Marshal Avar Kriss, arguably one of the most powerful and heroic masters during the era set 200 years before The Phantom Menace. While the marshal of Starlight Beacon has long had an unwavering faith in the Force she may have taken her faith too far, letting her emotions cloud her judgment in the face of failure.
In recent issues of The High Republic, Starlight Beacon is more determined than ever to rid the galaxy of the Nihil, the cunning pirates who’ve harnessed a deadly means of space travel that allows them to be nearly untouchable. As a result, Starlight’s Marshal Avar Kriss decided to send some of her Jedi undercover to infiltrate the Nihil and learn more about their operations. However, while this mission was against the wishes of the Jedi Council, Kriss still received the support she needed from her fellow Jedi under her command, many of whom adore and idolize her.
Now, High Republic #12 from writer Cavan Scott and artist Georges Jeanty sees Starlight engaged in a rescue mission after the infiltration fell apart thanks to the unexpected involvement of the Nihil’s leader Lourna Dee. However, while Avar attempts to use the Force to try and prevent Dee’s escape, it’s ultimately not enough. Additionally, Kriss’ failure results in an uncharacteristic emotional outburst, one that may follow Kriss as she continues to make bolder and riskier decisions. In the face of enough failure, It’s possible Kriss could eventually become disenfranchised with the light side of the Force. Likewise, if Kriss’ were to fall from grace as one of the High Republic’s chief heroes, it could certainly begin the Jedi Order’s gradual spiral to the point where it becomes vulnerable enough for Darth Sidious’ corruption of Anakin Skywalker during the prequel era of films.
If there’s one thing the High Republic era has done quite well, it’s shown that the Jedi of the past were more free-thinking and expressive in their views and perspectives. However, Avar’s belief that the Force will always provide seems to be an overreliance on the Force itself. To say that the Jedi will always win would mean that the Force would be constantly out of balance in favor of the light. Furthermore, it only serves to create further disappointment and despair like Jedi Marshal Kriss is currently feeling, motivating her to make rash decisions due to her high emotions in the aftermath of losing Lourna Dee.
Now, Avar Kriss is about to lead Starlight’s Jedi into battle, launching a full-scale assault on Dee and the Nihil (with some Jedi being just as unbalanced as she is). Going against the will of the Council, it’s possible Kriss could be leading the Jedi of Starlight Beacon into a major trap. Furthermore, if she does become lost as is potentially being teased, it could very well create the domino effect that sees the Order’s transformation into its weaker state before its destruction at the hands of Anakin Skywalker when he fell to the dark side in the Star Wars prequels.
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