Star Wars fans are upset that a Black queer woman from the Ahsoka novel was replaced by a nameless white dude in Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi.
For those who don't have Disney+, Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi basically tells the story of how Ahsoka Tano became a Jedi while Count Dooku became a Sith lord. There are a bunch of other Jedi in there too since it all takes place during the prequel trilogy, filling in various aspects of both characters.
The last episode of the series, titled "Resolve," feature Ahsoka on the run from the Empire after surviving Order 66. The episode is largely based on the 2016 novel Ahsoka by author E. K. Johnston. In both the story and the episode, Ahsoka retreats to an agricultural planet where she's eventually forced to out herself as a Jedi in order to defend some helpless villagers. This gets the Empire's Sith Inquisitors involved, with Ahsoka fighting them off to eventually join the rebellion.
However, the story and the episode diverge on one of the characters that help keep Ahsoka's identity under wraps. In the book (with thanks to Gayming Magazine for the synopsis), that person was Kaedan Larte, a queer Black woman that develops feelings for Ahsoka over the course of the novel. In Tales of the Jedi, Kaedan is replaced by an unnamed white male.
Fans are upset with the swap for several reasons. First, it brands Ahsoka with the "Legends" moniker, which is Star Wars speak for non-canon fiction. Second, it certainly seems like another example of whitewashing from a company with a complicated history of representation.
Fans are accusing Disney of deliberately removing Kaedan in order to avoid a larger discussion about Ahsoka's sexuality. Ahsoka, the Disney+ live-action series centered on the Jedi's journey following the events of Return of the Jedi, is scheduled to air sometime in 2023. In the novel, Ahsoka expresses mutual affection for Kaedan (which was also confirmed by the author), although it’s never acted upon. Disney may have wanted to avoid hinting at Ahsoka’s sexuality in order to jive with her depiction in the upcoming series.
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