The Star Wars franchise is massive, now covering 11 films, multiple TV shows, and an extensive collection of other non-canon books and video games. And there’s still more content on the way. With so many characters and plot arcs, it’s easy to forget interesting details, especially if it’s been years since your last rewatch. As a result, it’s always a blast to revisit these films again and refresh our memories on amusing moments, such as the little scenes that show us what a culture is like on alien planets or strange connections between characters that we completely forgot about.
And that’s what this article is all about — touching on things you forgot happened in the Star Wars universe. We’re talking about obscure characters, overshadowed moments, and brief scenes that quickly fly by and never quite settle into our memories. Some of these things you’ll suddenly remember with a sense of fondness, but others may remind you about some of the shortcomings of the Star Wars saga. But whether they make you chuckle or shake your fist at the sky, these are things you forgot happened in the Star Wars franchise.
Everyone forgot about the death of Admiral Ackbar
If you’re a Star Wars fan, close your eyes for just one minute. Can you remember the death of Admiral Ackbar? You know, that fish-looking dude who commanded the fleet that attacked the Death Star in Return of the Jedi. That one guy who gave us the famous "it’s a trap!" meme. Well, if you don’t remember, don’t feel bad because next to nobody remembers the death of Ackbar except for the people who were looking for it. It so happens that Admiral Ackbar dies in The Last Jedi, but his death is overshadowed by a bigger moment — the near-death of Leia Organa. This is the infamous scene where Leia gets blasted into space but miraculously survives using a Force shield to fly to safety.
As much as fans criticized that scene, they probably would’ve attacked it more had they known that one of their favorite minor characters died in the background. In the moments leading up to the ship’s explosion, Leia and Admiral Ackbar are on the deck, leading the Resistance in a fight against the First Order. Outside, Kylo Ren is flying around, ready to torpedo the ship to pieces. This is when the camera cuts between Kylo Ren and Leia multiple times as Ren struggles to pull the trigger. In the end, his fellow fighters torpedo the ship down, and that’s the end of Admiral Akbar.
Chewbacca is a war veteran and personally knows Yoda
As we all know, the original Star Wars movies were released in the ’70s and ’80s. The prequels started coming out in 1999. Naturally, there was going to be some difficulty maintaining continuity within the story due to the massive gap between their creations. Still, there were some pretty big plot holes between these trilogies for anyone who was paying attention. One of the biggest examples is the forgotten relationship between Chewbacca and Yoda. In Revenge of the Sith, Chewbacca and Yoda essentially fought a battle together on the Wookiee home planet Kashyyyk. Furthermore, Chewbacca is present when the clones try to assassinate Yoda. Afterward, the two even have a heartfelt goodbye when they have to go their separate ways.
If you forgot about all of that happening, you’re not alone, because it seems like Chewbacca and Yoda also forgot about it. Somehow, this relationship is never once brought up in the original Star Wars trilogy. For example, Han Solo will give Luke and Obi-Wan a really hard time about the supposed existence of the Force and the Jedi, essentially saying that it’s all fiction. But why doesn’t Chewie speak up right then and there? You would think that Chewbacca would say something to the effect of, "Actually, Han, the Jedi are real. I fought with one, and I’m an eyewitness of the Force’s existence." (Of course, all we would hear is Chewie roaring.) But we never see these kinds of conversations take place.
Did you forget the Jedi Council had a member named Yaddle?
We know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking the reason you don’t remember Yaddle is because she’s from the extended universe. Well, surprise. Yaddle is 100%, bona fide, Disney-approved canon. Yaddle first appeared in The Phantom Menace as a member of the Jedi Council in Coruscant. She’s basically a female version of Yoda. And let’s pause here for a moment just to talk about how uncreative this character’s name and appearance is. We understand building a complex, enormous universe like Star Wars probably takes a lot of creative energy, and sometimes you have to recycle ideas. But come on. Yaddle? It looks like they just put a wig on top of the Yoda puppet and changed a few letters in Yoda’s name.
Anyway, despite being a Yoda knock-off, Yaddle is very real. She’s present during the Jedi Council session when Qui-Gon Jinn brings news that the Sith have returned in The Phantom Menace. She’s also there when the council tests Anakin, but she doesn’t have any speaking parts. Yaddle is also a part of the (off-screen) deliberation over whether or not the Jedi Council will train the young Anakin Skywalker. And she’s present when Mace Windu delivers the news to Qui-Gon Jinn that the council is refusing to instruct Anakin due to his old age. Beyond these few scenes, we don’t know what happens to Yaddle. Maybe she perished in the Battle of Geonosis or during Order 66, but we never see her again.
Anakin wrestled with Greedo
The prequels loved making small connections between characters from the original trilogy. For example, it turns out that Darth Vader built C-3PO, and Boba Fett’s "father" served as a clone template for the Empire’s stormtroopers. These tiny connections can sometimes be too coincidental, but they’re also neat because we get to see that these beloved characters have more history than we knew about. Among these interesting links is one that Star Wars fans often forget, and that’s when Anakin wrestled with Greedo.
Greedo, of course, is the infamous bounty hunter in A New Hope who plans to turn Han Solo over to Jabba the Hutt, but Han kills him before that can happen. It turns out that Greedo grew up on Tatooine at the same time that Anakin did. In a deleted scene from The Phantom Menace, a young Anakin Skywalker wrestles with Greedo in the middle of a street, but Qui-Gon Jinn intervenes. Apparently, Greedo was accusing Anakin of cheating to win the podrace, and that really ticked off Anakin. Little did Greedo know at the time that one day, Anakin’s son-in-law would shoot him dead in a cantina not too far from where they wrestled.
Believe it or not, Count Dooku trained Qui-Gon Jinn
One of the classic tropes in the Star Wars universe is that heroes must have special connections with villains. Luke is Darth Vader’s son, Rey is the emperor’s granddaughter, Obi-wan trained Darth Vader, and so on and so forth. But among these relationships is a frequently forgotten one, namely that Qui-Gon Jinn was Count Dooku’s Padawan. Before Dooku turned to the Dark Side, he was a well-respected member of the Jedi Council. And like most Jedi, Dooku trained up younger Jedi, and among his disciples was the altruistic Qui-Gon Jinn.
It’s difficult to imagine that a power-hungry traitor like Dooku could train such a stand-up guy like Qui-Gon, but it happened. It seems Dooku did a really great job of passing on his fighting skills to Qui-Gon, as his skills clearly reflect he’s an excellent warrior (besides dying to Darth Maul). Fortunately, it seems that Dooku never passed on his Dark Side tendencies to Qui-Gon despite being so close to him.
Even though we don’t get to see this backstory take place on screen, we know what happens. Dooku gets fed up with the Jedi Order and the Republic, so he leaves and joins Darth Sidious as his apprentice. He takes on the Sith name Darth Tyranus and helps manufacture the Clone Wars. As for Qui-Gon Jinn, he remains with the Light Side of the Force and takes on a Padawan named Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Anakin buried his mom on the Lars homestead
Holy plot holes, George Lucas! We don’t blame any Star Wars fans for forgetting this small fact. Anakin’s mother, Shmi, dies at the hands of the Tusken Raiders, prompting Anakin to slaughter the entire tribe. This is one of the key moments of his transformation into Darth Vader. After this incredibly dark scene, Anakin wraps his mother’s body, places it on a speeder, and drives to the Lars’ residence. And there, on the property, Anakin buries Shmi Skywalker.
But that begs a question, of course, because a few years after this burial, Luke Skywalker would move in with the Lars and start working the land as a fellow farmer. Didn’t Luke see this tombstone? Was anything inscribed on the tombstone that Luke could read? We know Owen Lars hid the truth about Luke’s past, but wouldn’t a tombstone that reads "Shmi Skywalker" prompt Luke to ask his adoptive parents about it? These are questions we may never get the answer to.
Robots play televised sports in the Star Wars universe
Harry Potter has Quidditch. The Hunger Games has the Hunger Games. And Star Wars has, well, this weird football game played by droids. It’s easy to forget this amusing fact because we only see it in the background of a short scene. During this time in Attack of the Clones, Anakin and Obi-Wan are chasing an assassin into a nightclub of sorts. It seems like a pretty chill place. The club has low lighting and tons of people who are gathered in groups, chatting and drinking away. On the wall, there are massive screens displaying various sports, and one of them shows two teams of robots on what looks like a football field. One team manages to sack the opposing quarterback, assuming they play the sport like we do.
Apparently, even in the Galactic Republic, a football-like sport is popular enough to merit widespread broadcasting. But it looks like sports fans in the Star Wars galaxy have moved on from watching biological creatures face one another. Instead, the leaders behind the Galactic Football League (or whatever they call it) have replaced their players with robots. Was it to spare human-like players from getting injured while playing the game? Was it because droids are stronger, faster athletes, and thus, more entertaining to watch? We may never know, but what we do know is that before the Empire rose to power, people all over the galaxy sat down in their homes to watch droid football.
Padme swapped places with her maid for protection twice
Remember that one time Padme swapped places with her maid and got her killed? We do.
In The Phantom Menace, Padme Amidala is introduced as the queen of Naboo and the planet’s representative in the Galactic Senate (yeah, we don’t understand the political titles, either). What we do know is that some dangerous people in the galaxy really want to kill Padme. So naturally, she takes precautions in the event of any assassination attempts. One of her favorite strategies is swapping places with one of her maids. This team of maids follows their queen wherever she goes, and they all kind of look alike, especially when one maid is played by Keira Knightley, and Padme is played by Natalie Portman.
We won’t question the ethics of this plan because it’s really smart, effective, and it seems that the maids are on board. Padme first pulls this stunt in The Phantom Menace by swapping places with her maid, Sabe. In Padme’s words, "This is my decoy, my protection … my loyal bodyguard." Then, Padme does it again in Attack of the Clones, but this time, the maid who takes her place is Corde. Unfortunately, Corde is killed in an assassination attempt. At the beginning of the film, Padme’s ship lands in Coruscant, but an assassin blows it up. Corde initially survives the blast, gives one last line to Padme, then passes away.
Obi-Wan helped a drug dealer turn his life around
This brief but wholesome scene seems memorable, but somehow, it gets forgotten. Let’s recall it, shall we?
In Attack of the Clones, Obi-Wan and Anakin are chasing an assassin on Coruscant, which brings them to a nightclub. It seems Obi-Wan wants to take a step back and let Anakin develop his Jedi skills because he tells Anakin to find the assassin while he calmly gets a drink at the bar. So Obi-Wan takes a seat, but while sitting there, a man approaches Obi-Wan and offers to sell him "death sticks." We’re not entirely sure what death sticks are, but they sound extremely unhealthy, and we’re assuming death sticks are some kind of heavy drug in the Star Wars universe. And just in case you’re worried we’re judging a book by its cover, people call this dude Elan Sleazebaggano. So yeah, we’re supposed to think this guy is a sleazebag.
Obviously, Obi-Wan is in no mood to deal with this stranger, so he uses his Jedi mind tricks to shut down the sale. The death sticks dealer seems incredibly susceptible to Obi-Wan’s persuasion. Here’s the dialogue.
Obi-Wan: "You don’t want to sell me death sticks."
Sleazebaggano: "I don’t wanna sell you death sticks."
Obi-Wan: "You want to go home and rethink your life."
Sleazebaggano: "I wanna go home and rethink my life."
Thanks, Obi-wan. Maybe Sleazebaggano did reconsider his drug-dealing ways.
A female Hutt used to own Anakin and Shmi Skywalker
Do you remember who owned Anakin and his mom before Watto did? In The Phantom Menace, we first see Shmi and Anakin Skywalker enslaved by Watto, the junk dealer and obsessive gambler. From there, Qui-Gon Jinn finagles Anakin’s freedom. But Watto didn’t always own Shmi and Anakin. In fact, Watto won them in a wager on a podracing game. Shmi and Anakin’s previous slave owner was Gardulla the Hutt. We basically only see Gardulla once — she’s in the background when Jabba the Hutt is giving a speech at the start of the podracing game that wins Anakin his freedom. She’s pretty hard to distinguish from Jabba, and if they weren’t standing next to one another, viewers would probably assume she was Jabba. But she’s a completely different Hutt.
We don’t learn what kind of person Gardulla the Hutt is, but considering she gambles slaves and is a Hutt, we imagine she’s a cunning crime lord like Jabba. It’s pretty difficult to picture Shmi and Anakin serving this giant toad. While Watto isn’t the most friendly character, it’s probably for the best that they ended up working at his junkyard. At least that way, Anakin can spend time building droids and podracers. Plus, it ends up working out for the best because they run into Qui-Gon Jinn when he visits Watto’s shop.
We all forgot that Obi-Wan got a lead from Dexter Jettster
Who is Dexter Jettster, you ask? Let us refresh your memory. In Attack of the Clones, Obi-Wan Kenobi is after a bounty hunter who uses unique poison darts, and it’s his plan to track the bounty hunter by discovering the origins of this weapon. Obi-Wan has a lot of resources available to him, such as the Jedi Council, access to the Jedi archives, and relationships within the Senate. But he doesn’t use any of those to identify these poison darts. Instead, he visits an old buddy named Dexter Jettster, who’s a four-armed alien who owns a diner on Coruscant.
Who in the Galactic Republic is this guy? Obi-Wan hugs this dude and talks to him as if he were an old high school best friend. How did these two ever meet? Jettster, for reasons that only the Star Wars gods know, possesses great knowledge about specialized weaponry and esoteric cultures. Jettster immediately identifies the dart as belonging to the Kaminos and then gives Obi-Wan some tips about how to interact with their culture. It sounds like this guy should be a college professor, but here he is working at a diner. We’re not sure what the game plan was for this character, but it seems like the only reason he ever existed was to help Kenobi identify this dart.