Get to know the unique story of a fan-favorite Jedi.
Star Wars Inside Intel is a StarWars.com feature where Lucasfilm’s Emily Shkoukani, whose job is to know as much about a galaxy far, far away as possible, explores obscure facts about Star Wars lore and continuity. In this installment, Emily takes a look at the maverick Jedi, Quinlan Vos…
Making his debut as a background character on the streets of Mos Espa in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, Quinlan Vos’ story developed in Expanded Universe comics -- where an affinity among fans quickly grew for the character. Recognizing the character's popularity in Dark Horse’s Star Wars: Republic comic series, George Lucas intended to bring Quinlan in for the final episode of the prequels. Although the scene ultimately never made it into the film, he does return in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series and is a main character in Christie Golden’s Star Wars: Dark Disciple novel.
Quinlan Vos is a Kiffar, a near-human species from the planet Kiffu. (Kiffar could also be found on its twin planet, Kiffex.) The most notable difference between Kiffar and humans is their blood color, a stark scarlet. Another distinction are the Kiffar’s facial tattoos, which traditionally signify an association with their clan on their home planet. Although Vos was raised by the Jedi Order, thus largely unaffiliated with his homeworld, he still has a yellow, tattooed line across his face that denoted his heritage.
What makes Quinlan Vos particularly captivating, though, is his unique Force ability known as psychometry. Through the Force, this talent allows Quinlan to touch an object and see an important event associated with it. However, only objects imprinted with a Force echo can provide him with these visions, and those echoes were only impressed onto objects that had witnessed a significant event. Without the Force, the imprint would not have been left, nor would a psychometry-abled person be able to see the imprint. Also known as postcognition (or retrocognition), this ability could not be taught. Rather, it’s an innate skill the Force seemingly bestows upon few Force-users. Another notable Jedi capable of psychometry is Cal Kestis. Years after surviving the Jedi Purge, Cal used this ability to learn information, such as what the Empire was up to, and how the Second Sister was corrupted by the dark side. Karr Nuq Sin also has this gift, as seen in the Star Wars: Force Collector novel.
Vos’ psychometric ability made him an excellent tracker, as he sought out Force echoes and used them as clues to carry out missions for the Jedi Order. After Ziro the Hutt was broken out of Republic prison, Obi-Wan Kenobi teamed up with Quinlan Vos to track down the escapee. His ability came in handy when an echo imprinted onto a cup Ziro had used allowed him to know of the Hutt’s recent presence. His talents often took him to the underworld, where on one such mission he met Aayla Secura, a Force-sensitive Twi’lek who became Vos’ apprentice. Beyond Vos’ uncommon power, he was generally regarded as a bit reckless among the Jedi Order. Obi-Wan wasn’t thrilled when he had to work with Vos in the hunt for Ziro.
Toward the end of the Clone Wars, the Jedi Council tasked Vos with hunting down and killing Count Dooku as a last resort to end the war. This mission would lead him to partnering with former Sith-assassin (and Dooku’s former apprentice) Asajj Ventress. Over the course of months, the two ended up falling in love, but were ripped apart by Dooku’s wickedness after Vos was captured by the Sith Lord. Dooku corrupted Vos, turning him to the dark side and making him an agent of the Separatist known as Admiral Enigma. While the mission was ultimately a failure, his bond with Asajj would bring him back to the light.
Although Quinlan’s scene from Revenge of the Sith was cut, Obi-Wan informs Anakin that “Master Vos moved his troops to Boz Pity,” after his former apprentice failed to make it to the originally scheduled briefing. This was possibly one of the last updates the Jedi received about Vos before Order 66 was executed. Vos’ fate during the Jedi Purge remains unknown, although the Empire believed he had survived…
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