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  • Writer's pictureAaron Fonseca

Star Wars Deserves a What If...? Series

In the recent Marvel show What If...?, it's been entertaining to see alternate events in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Multiple timelines mean the main timeline won't be affected, so the stories told are free to get as wild and world-ending as they want. Another franchise that would be interesting to explore What If...? scenarios in is Star Wars. With so many events throughout canon that completely change the trajectory of the story, there are endless possibilities for unique, galaxy-altering tales.

Star Wars is littered with moments that make fans wish things turned out differently, with one of the most obvious being Anakin's turn to the Dark Side in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. While Anakin's turn to Vader and back is one of the most well-known stories and redemption arcs in cinema, a glimpse at a happier life could satisfy a lot of fans. Anakin could've still gotten along with Obi-Wan and Ahsoka, the clones might not have turned and Luke and Leia could've grown up with their real parents. It could be a much less tragic tale than is usually found in Star Wars, but that's the beauty of a What If...?, as fans can explore different themes and tones.

On the flip side, a much darker side of Star Wars could be shown. Events such as Palatine turning Luke to the Dark Side in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi could explore a grimmer ending. Luke could kill Vader and the Emperor could focus on the attacking rebels, seeing the Empire finally win once and for all. Leia could even be forced to rise up and confront her brother, as Jedi Leia has never been shown much in canon.

When Disney first acquired Star Wars, the company seemed adamant that all new content would be canonically part of the larger universe. But Disney has recently strayed away from that idea, with examples like the recent Star Wars: Visions being an animated show with mini-stories confirmed not to be canon. While Visions mostly tells stories that keep away from the movie events, it wouldn't be much of a change to make a Visions-style show that resembles What If...?

And if Disney wished to make Star Wars What If...? somewhat canonical, there's a way to introduce a multiverse. In the fourth season of the animated show Star Wars Rebels, Jedi Ezra Bridger finds himself in a space outside of time called the World Between Worlds. In this strange area of the Force, Ezra could interact with moments in time if he so wished, meaning that an unusual form of time travel is somewhat possible in Star Wars, and alternate timelines aren't out of the question.

Disney could even look to past Star Wars comics for inspiration. Though it's never been canon, the comic Star Wars Infinities was published by Dark Horse Comics from 2002 to 2004, which told What If...?-style stories taking place during the original trilogy. The comic featured scenarios such as Leia turning to the Dark Side, meaning Luke has to face the Emperor, Darth Vader and his sister. And with the comics running for as long as they did, it shows that there's plenty of possibilities and fun storytelling in Star Wars alternate history and that there's definitely an audience for it


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