Droids in the Star Wars universe are not simply soulless robotic machines that perform a function and move on to the next. Many are imbued with personalities that make them stand out and attract audiences to like them. Look at the character qualities of droids such as BB-8, C-3PO, R2-D2, and C1-10P, or as more commonly known, Chopper. C-3PO is nervous and often scared. BB-8 and R2-D2 are comedically sarcastic and brave. And there is Chopper, my favorite war crime on wheels. Chopper has a body count, and it’s bigger than you think.
For fans of the animated series Star Wars Rebels, it is of no surprise that Chopper has a body count. Episode after episode, Chopper is doing things that would land people in jail. He sets bombs and rigs other explosives, shoots blasters with his two little arms, and other ways of removing the life from his opponents all throughout the series. But isn’t this a kids’ show? Technically yes. All Star Wars is made for kids if we are being honest. George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars, has said many times, like in an interview during the 2017 Star Wars Celebration, that the original movie was made for 12-year-olds.
So yes, made for kids, but it also helps kids understand politics, life, death, loss, and other adult topics. Lucas made those original films in that light. Look at the themes of the Original Trilogy, and you begin to see the vision that Lucas had for the start of Star Wars. We also see that he placed into many characters the inner war of good vs. evil and the struggle to do what was right. The conflict between the light and the dark. If Lucas put human emotions and personalities into droids like R2-D2 and C-3PO from the beginning, it would only make sense that a droid like Chopper would come along. Not only is there the internal good vs. evil conflict in his programming, but there is the comedic relief that has become part of Star Wars characters, human or droid.
Throughout Rebels, we see Chopper struggle with his good vs. evil. Let’s be honest, “Good” was behind on the scorecard in some episodes. Chop is impatient and has a temper. His temper causes him to do things beyond the Geneva Convention and, in real life, would be considered war crimes. His body count is estimated to be over 4000 and perhaps as high as 50,000. That kill count makes sense considering that Chop blew up 2 Star Destroyers, and within moments of being on camera in the new Ahsoka series, he was looking to bomb something just because it was easier. You would have to do something more drastic to get any higher of a kill count than that. Like what, though? Perhaps shooting two photon torpedos into the reactor core of the Death Star while trusting in the Force, causing a chain reaction that will destroy the whole planet-sized space station.
So, in reality, 4000 confirmed kills are a lot for a droid, even for our favorite little murder bot, Chopper. But there are other characters in the Star Wars universe who have a much higher kill count, and we think nothing of it.
And that 4000-member list for Chop has an opportunity to grow because, although Rebels may be done, Ahsoka is just beginning. Chop is in the Ahsoka show, and we may see him in a live-action chase for that top spot on the leaderboard that our hero Luke Skywalker sits atop.
Ahsoka Season 1 is now streaming on Disney Plus.