Grand Admiral Thrawn, or Mitth’raw’nuruodo is maybe the most famous officer in the Imperial Navy, or even in the galaxy far, far away. Right now he is destined for notoriety and greatness in the new Star Wars canon. He is poised to become someone like Thanos from the MCU.
He is going to be Thanos regarding his morality as well as widespread significance. Thrawn is loved in the expanded universe or Star Wars Legends for being the main antagonist in his own Timothy Zahn trilogy of books.
He has been made canon in the new books and has appeared in Star Wars: Rebels in an animated form. Thrawn’s entry into the new Star Wars canon runs parallel to his story in Legends.
He came to the Empire to work on his own plans and prepare the galaxy for a widespread invasion. Right now, the story shows that Star Wars can indeed adapt the Thrawn trilogy of books and incorporate it into the new Disney+ live-action shows.
Thrawn’s latest books have set up a potential invasion with the Grysk Hegemony. They are a powerful species present within the Unknown Regions.
With the ending of the animated series Star Wars: Rebels, and especially after the mention of Thrawn in season 2 of The Mandalorian, both Thrawn’s and Ashoka’s stories will probably be intertwined.
It also seems like Thrawn is being set up as the main villain of the galaxy, like Thanos was in the MCU, during the period between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens.
If Thrawn continues to be relevant to the happenings of the galaxy, as he has been thus far, then Ashoka will surely become Thrawn’s Luke Skywalker. But more than that, it will be Grand Admiral Thrawn who connects the Star Wars Disney+ shows.
It’s quite like how Marvel does it. So Thrawn might become like Thanos in this regard.
After all, the MCU has hinted at Thanos for years. He was working in the shadows and was only lightly hinted at in every character’s movie. The Mad Titan didn’t show up until the very end and became the catalyst for all of the heroes coming together.
Right now, Thrawn seems pretty irrelevant in Star Wars. He doesn’t really play a role in The Book of Boba Fett and also didn’t in The Mandalorian. So he is in the shadows right now and hasn’t yet come to the front.
However, it’s possible that he is pulling strings behind-the-scenes, just like he did in season 2 of The Mandalorian. Maybe he has an Imperial remnant faction. And so now, he is just biding his time.
However, staying in the background, and collecting all the pieces to launch the final attack isn’t the only similarity between Thrawn and Thanos. Maybe the most significant connection between them is their twisted morality and self-justification.
Both characters feel that their ends justify their means. Thanos believed that he saved the universe from collapse even though what he committed was mass genocide.
Thrawn believes that he is uniting the entire galaxy to fight one common enemy, even though he is carrying out what is essentially fascism. This makes both of the villains in their universes compelling.
In Legends continuity, Thrawn’s death meant that the galaxy wasn’t ready for the genocidal Yuuzhan Vong invasion. In the new canon, the Grysks have replaced them.
These kinds of lofty ambitions of Thrawn meant that he’s threateningly relevant to all the Star Wars projects set in this era. It doesn’t matter if he is relevant to one project or another.
Ashoka looking for Thrawn in her own upcoming Disney+ series means that the character will be brought to the forefront.
It should also be noted that Thrawn is fascinated with the Force in the Legends continuity as well as in the main Star Wars canon books. In The Mandalorian, Moff Gideon was also fascinated with the Force. And maybe this is the connection between the two.
Grand Admiral Thrawn’s similarity to Thanos is likely pure coincidence and good writing. But no matter what, Thrawn’s motivations make him a formidable enemy to fight.
It makes the audience question whether, his belief in ends justifying means is worth it or not. We don’t know whether this is what Lucasfilm is planning right now. So we have to wait and let the story play out.
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