The 6 Coolest Wookiees (Who Aren’t Chewbacca)
Is there any cooler, more appreciated character in science fiction than Chewbacca? We all know there’s an awesome actor in that costume, but we also all totally treat Chewbacca as a real person. It’s one of my favorite things about the human race.
But Chewbacca isn’t the only wookiee worthy of our attentions. The Star Wars Universe is a wide and impressive place, filled with all manner of delightful aliens and crazy people. And after Chewbacca made wookiees so cool, the brilliant minds behind Star Wars went out and created a bunch more! The Star Wars Universe is filled with fun and fascinating Wookiees, and here are the coolest ones (who aren’t named Chewbacca)!
You might remember Tarfful if you’ve watched Revenge of the Sith at any point since its theatrical release, which I know is something difficult to do. But there were several scenes on the wookiee home world of Kashyyyk, including a few fun scenes of Yoda hanging out with wookiees, including a prequel appearance by Chewbacca! Tarfful was the one badass wookiee warrior besides the usual big guy who was cool enough to hang out with Yoda, and was there when Yoda fled the planet. Tarfful and Chewbacca are responsible for keeping Yoda alive during Order 66, killing all the brainwashed Clone Troopers that came their way.
But Tarfful had a full history of awesomeness before Revenge of the Sith. He spent most of his life battling trandoshan slavers, who loved picking on wookiees. He also led a squad to save Chewbacca when the hairy one was kidnapped during the Clone Wars. Tarfful has even made appearances in the Star Wars LEGOs video games. That’s a high honor indeed.
5. Bowdaar the Deathmountain
Since wookiees are so cool, it shouldn’t be any surprise that they show up as often as possible in Star Wars video games. There would have been a wookiee pilot in Rogue Squadron if only they’d somehow figured out how to fit them in an X-Wing cockpit. Sadly, that didn’t happen. Instead, we’ve got Bowdaar the Deathmountain, a wookiee companion from The Old Republic MMO. Known as the ‘Deathmountain’, the ‘Boneshatterer” and the “The Killer from Kashyyyk”, Bowdaar was a gladiator who never lost a fight. He eventually became the personal gladiator/pet of Drooga the Hutt, who used and abused the wookiee warrior for maximum entertainment value. After kicking Drooga’s butt and completed a few missions, Bowdaar joins your character’s crew and all is well.
But, of course, Bowdaar is far from the only wookiee companion to join your team in a Star Wars role-playing game.
Zaalbar is the wookiee sidekick you pick up in the legendary video game, Knights of the Old Republic. Like pretty much any wookiee, he was a sidekick to another character, a twi-lek orphan named Mission Vao. You meet Vao and Zaalbar early in the game, go on a few awesome missions, and they eventually join up and become part of your crew. As the game progresses, you eventually return to Kashyyyk and discover that Zaalbar is the exiled son of the wookiee chieftain! Who knew? There’s a big battle, lots of excitement, and then Zaalbar is given a ceremonial leadership blade. It’s all well and good, and then Zaalbar helps you save the day in the end! Good times.
There’s also Hanharr, the wookiee crew member you get in the sequel, Knights of the Old Republic II. He’s an evil bastard who likes to kill for fun. So really, good times all around.
3. Black Krrsantan
Born out of Marvel’s new series of Star Wars comics, Black Krrsantan is an evil wookiee bounty hunter who operated in the years between A New Hope and Empire. Black Krrsantan was hired by Darth Vader himself to track down a mysterious agent in cahoots with the Emperor, and then he was hired once again to help Vader’s evil sidekicks steal a ship-load of money from a local mob boss. There were many bounty hunters in the galaxy back then, but Black Krrsantan was the only one evil enough to earn the trust of Darth Vader himself.
Black Krrsantan might just be the most evil wookiee in the entire Star Wars canon.
Speaking of canon, that becomes a very important distinction with the final two characters on this list: the wookiee Jedi. Because yes, my friends, there are wookiee Jedi, and it is as glorious as you can imagine. They wield lightsabers, use the Force, and are all around as badass as possible. But when Disney bought Star Wars and started work on The Force Awakens, they went and declared that all of the Expanded Universe characters were no longer part of the official canon.
Sucks, then, to be Lowbacca, the most famous of the wookiee Jedi. Lowbacca, who also happens to be Chewbacca’s nephew, was a very popular character who survived through a multitude of Expanded Universe books. He started out as a trainee/bff of Jaina and Jacen Solo, the Jedi children of Han and Leia. He would go on to study at Luke Skywalker’s Jedi Academy, attained the rank of Jedi Knight Lowbacca even fought in the Yuuzhan Vong War and beyond. He was still making appearances when the EU was declared non-canon. Poor guy.
But he’s not alone.
There were at least two other wookiee Jedi in the canon. Kirlocca was a Jedi Master before and during the beginning of the Clone Wars. He was a lightsaber instructor at the Jedi Academy. Tyvokka was a Jedi in the same time frame, a powerful and revered Master who trained the more famous Jedi, Plo Koon, as his Padawan. So now you know that Plo Koon’s master was a wookiee!
Then at the height of the Expanded Universe, George Lucas himself put an end to any more wookiee Jedi. For a man who loves excess, he apparently saw the wisdom in limiting the awesomeness of wookiee Jedi. And then when the EU was declared non-canonical, Lowbacca, Kirlocca and Tyvokka met their final fate.
But all is not lost, my friends. Because Lucas eventually changed his mind, and there exists, in Disney-approved Star Wars canon, a living, breathing wookiee Jedi!
Gungi was a young, Jedi cadet during the Clone Wars, and might just be the only remaining wookiee Jedi in Star Wars canon. He was part of a small group of cadets who starred in a couple episodes of The Clone Wars cartoon, telling the stories of how young Jedi build their first lightsabers and learn to be little badasses. Gungi couldn’t speak the normal languages, but he got along with everybody just fine. That’s how wookiees do.
And even cooler? Gungi built his lightsaber out of wood!
Gungi and his pals helped fight some pirates and some bad guys, having a few rousing adventures over the course of a couple episodes. Sadly, nothing is known of what became of Gungi after that. So we can only assume that Darth Vader slaughtered him in cold blood alongside the other younglings at the Jedi Temple.
But I think I’m going to hold on hope that there’s still at least one wookiee Jedi out there fighting the good fight.