As a child, I knew with absolute certainty that my favorite Star Wars character, Darth Maul, was dead. People say you can’t know if a character is dead in film for sure unless they show you on screen. Well, Maul’s demise seemed cut and dry — literally. But he refused go down in history as nothing more than a failed apprentice, returning in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels.
Maul is a troubled and broken character with a riveting history and future, and is the driving force behind many great moments across the films, television, and comics. When Maul appears in the Star Wars universe, you know you’re about to witness something special. Here are five of great moments that show the impact of Darth Maul.
1. The Reveal (Star Wars: The Phantom Meance)
Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi were speechless when they saw the wraith awaiting them — a devil-faced being cloaked in black — as the launch bay doors opened on Naboo. The audience was left the same way — in shock and anticipation, as John Williams’ incredible “Duel of the Fates” blasted from the screen. The reveal of Darth Maul was perfect, and remains a great Star Wars moment overall.
2. Alive — and Broken (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, “Brothers”)
Pulling from his lust for revenge and hatred for Obi-Wan, Maul was able to survive a certain death on Naboo and make his way to Lotho Minor, where he became a cybernetic, crazed, arachnid-like monster. Monster Maul would be found by Savage Opress, his brother, and taken to Mother Talzin on Dathomir. The Nightsister witch returned Maul to sanity, gifted him cybernetic legs, and brought the former Dark Lord of the Sith close to his revenge.
3. The Hunt for Kenobi (The Clone Wars, “Revenge”)
“Jedi! I have been waiting for you.” Chills. The reunion of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Maul was a moment that most fans had only dreamt of. It was true, high-stakes, Star Wars drama. Maul was back, and he was hungry.
4. Dark Memories (Star Wars: Shattered Empire #3)
Princess Leia Organa’s connection to the Force has always been a topic of discussion among Star Wars fans, especially in the lead-up to the release of The Force Awakens. And in Shattered Empire, we saw a powerful reminder of that connection. Upon entering the Naboo hangar in which Maul clashed with Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan, Leia felt the cold, dark-side imprint of the Sith Lord. It’s a chilling moment not just for Leia, but the for the reader as well.
5. Old Master/What Fun! (Star Wars Rebels, “Twilight of the Apprentice”)
On the dark planet of Malachor, Maul was a different warrior than the one we had met on Naboo. Seemingly old and decrepit, he had no future — until Ezra Bridger and the crew of the Ghost arrived. When he befriended young Ezra — “Call me…old Master…” — Maul began to resemble the man he once was. And when he finally let go of his feeble facade and took on the Empire’s Inquisitors, it was a reminder of just how powerful and deceptive he was and is. Maul leapt into action, once again displaying his amazing agility and lightsaber prowess. And with his manipulation of Ezra and betrayal of Kanan, he may be more of a threat than ever. Here’s to more Maul in Star Wars Rebels Season Three.
Tyler Westhause is the social media manager for Rebel Force Radio, a popular podcast that covers the latest and greatest in Star Wars news. He became engrossed with Star Wars at the age of three, when he went to see The Phantom Menace in theaters. Tyler is also always happy to run your ear off about why Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is the greatest video game of all time. Follow him on Twitter @twesthause.