The Bad Batch: Why Pantora is important to Star Wars

Star Wars: The Bad Batch, “Cornered,” now streaming on Disney+! Photo: Disney+
Star Wars: The Bad Batch, “Cornered,” now streaming on Disney+! Photo: Disney+ /

In episode 4 of Star Wars: The Bad Batch, Omega and Clone Force 99 find themselves having to make a pit stop. Their ship is in disrepair and their supplies are low. So where do they head to? A little moon that’s been mentioned before in the Star Wars world: Pantora.

No, this isn’t “Pandora” like in the world of Avatar. But its people do come in the blue variety, and we’ve seen them a few times now in Star Wars history — it even has a fun connection to Star Wars’ creator itself, George Lucas.

The very first time we see an important character from Pantora is actually in a live-action capacity, not just the animated world. Yes, two Pantorans were featured in Revenge of the Sith, briefly seen when Anakin is meeting Chancellor Palpatine at the Galaxies Opera House. Anakin passes behind Pantorans Baron Notluwiski Papanoida and his daughter Chi Eekway Papanoida. Baron Papanoida, in this film, is actually portrayed by George Lucas in this small cameo, and Chi Eekway is played by Lucas’ daughter Katie Lucas.

Pantora in Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Later, as mentioned in the YouTube video from One Minute Critic, both the Baron and his daughter appear again — this time in The Clone Wars season 3. In the episode “Sphere of Influence,” Pantora faces some trouble after the Trade Federation puts a blockade on them, and the senator of Pantora appeals to the Federation at a senate meeting to have the blockade removed.

The request was refused, though the Separatists (and Count Dooku himself), offered immediate relief to Pantora if they joined their efforts. This led to the Baron’s two daughters being captured by Greedo at the request of the Separatists and (secretly) the Federation to put pressure on Pantora. But after the daughters were recovered with the assistance of Ahsoka Tano, the senator was able to use the discovery of the Federation’s involvement in the capturing to allow them to remove the blockade on Pantora entirely.

That senator, by the way, was Riyo Chuchi. This Pantoran appeared in season 1 of The Clone Wars during a mission where she, Ahsoka, Obi-Wan, and Anakin investigate the nearby planet Orto Plutonia. Despite then-Chairman Chi Cho wanting to claim Plutonia as theirs, the inhabitants known as the Talz complicated that. Eventually, after war broke out between them and the Talz (with Chairman Cho losing his life in the process), Senator Chuchi granted the Talz their sovereignty and affirmed Pantora would not lay claim over their planet.

Elsewhere, Pantora and its people have been mentioned in books like Leia, Princess of Alderaan and even The High Republic: A Test of Courage. It’s a small location as far as Star Wars history goes, but full of fascinating facts nonetheless.

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