Darth Maul

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Darth Maul
Star Wars character
Darth Maul.png
Ray Park as Maul in Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018)
First appearanceThe Phantom Menace (1999)
Created byGeorge Lucas
Portrayed byRay Park
Voiced by
In-universe information
Full nameUnknown
SpeciesDathomirian Zabrak
GenderMale
Occupation
Affiliation
  • Sith Order (formerly)
  • Shadow Collective
  • Crimson Dawn
Family
HomeworldDathomir[1]

Darth Maul, later simply Maul, is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise. A powerful Zabrak Sith Lord and Darth Sidious' first known apprentice, he first appeared in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999), portrayed by Ray Park and voiced by Peter Serafinowicz. Despite his apparent death at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi at the end of the film, the 2008 Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated television series reveals that Maul had actually survived his injuries, and he made further appearances in the 2014 series Star Wars Rebels and the 2018 film Solo: A Star Wars Story, all voiced by Sam Witwer, with Park physically reprising the role in the latter film.

The Clone Wars reveals that Maul was once a member of a group of Zabrak warriors on Dathomir, and was abducted as a child by Sidious.[2] Following his defeat at Kenobi's hands, Maul is driven to insanity and becomes a cyborg, but is rescued by his brother Savage Opress twelve years later, during the Clone Wars. After being provided with a pair of new robotic legs by the Nightsisters, led by Maul's mother, Talzin, he seeks revenge against Kenobi. In the process, he recruits several crime syndicates to his cause, forming the Shadow Collective. He takes over Mandalore, only to be defeated and captured by Sidious. Maul later escapes and manages to rebuild his criminal empire[3]; near the end of the war, he engineers a conflict on Mandalore to lure out and kill Anakin Skywalker. Ahsoka Tano is sent to deal with him instead, and he is captured, only to be freed by Tano when Sidious executes Order 66, causing the clone troopers to turn on their Jedi generals. During the Galactic Empire era, Maul, having abandoned his Sith persona, leads the Crimson Dawn crime syndicate, until being stranded on the Sith world of Malachor for years. He escapes after meeting Jedi Padawan Ezra Bridger, whom he attempts to turn to the dark side, and later forces to assist in locating Kenobi. Upon tracking him down to Tatooine, he confronts Kenobi and fights him one final time. Maul is fatally injured and dies in Kenobi's arms, realizing that the latter is looking after the boy he believes to be the Chosen One.[4]

Since the release of The Phantom Menace, Maul has become a widely recognized character in popular culture, mostly because of his unique facial tattoos and horns, and his double-bladed lightsaber. Aside from the films and television series, he has appeared in various canon and non-canon Star Wars media over the years, such as books, comics, and video games.

Characteristics[edit]

Concept and creation[edit]

After getting frustrated with a drawing by production designer Gavin Bocquet, Iain McCaig started covering it in tape. Both he and Lucas liked the result, described as "a kind of Rorschach pattern". The final drawing had McCaig's own face, with the skin removed, and some Rorschach experimentation (dropping ink onto paper, folding it in half then opening).[5] Maul's facial tattoos were inspired by the indigenous peoples of Brazil.[6] Maul is described as a thing of nightmares when his art design is finished.

Darth Maul's head originally had feathers, based on prayer totems, but the Creature Effects crew led by Nick Dudman interpreted those feathers as horns, modifying his features into those common in popular depictions of the devil.[7]

His clothing was also modified, from a tight body suit with a muscle pattern to the Sith robe based on samurai pleats, because the lightsaber battles involved much jumping, spinning, running, and rolling.[8] Another concept had Maul a masked figure, something that could rival Darth Vader, while the senatorial characters would sport painted and tattooed faces. It was later decided to apply the painted and tattooed faces to Maul rather than the senator.[8]

Portrayal[edit]

Darth Maul was physically portrayed by actor and martial artist Ray Park in The Phantom Menace.[9] The character was voiced by comedian/voice actor/director Peter Serafinowicz in The Phantom Menace and Lego videogame adaptation of the prequel trilogy, while Sam Witwer performed the character's voice in the animated series The Clone Wars, Rebels, and in the live action movie Solo: A Star Wars Story. Actors Gregg Berger, Jess Harnell, Stephen Stanton, Clint Bajakian, and David W. Collins have all voiced him in Legends adaptations and minor appearances.

Appearances[edit]

Films[edit]

The Phantom Menace[edit]

Ray Park as Darth Maul in The Phantom Menace

In his first appearance, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul is ordered by his master Darth Sidious (Ian McDiarmid) to capture Queen Padmé Amidala (Natalie Portman) of Naboo in order to force her to sign a treaty that would legitimize the Trade Federation's invasion of the planet, thus making him the central antagonist. Maul manages to track down her starship to Tatooine, where he briefly duels Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson), who was assigned to protect the Queen, near the ship's landing zone, but Qui-Gon ultimately escapes aboard the ship. He soon concludes that Maul is a Sith Lord and informs the Jedi Council on Coruscant, thus revealing the return of the Sith, who were thought to be extinct for over a millennium. Later, Maul is sent to Naboo to assist the Trade Federation when they face hostile opposition from the Queen and her men, and once again duels Qui-Gon, along with his apprentice Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor). Ultimately, Maul is able to mortally wound Qui-Gon and knock Obi-Wan down into a shaft, but the latter uses the Force to propel himself out of the pit, and equip himself with Qui-Gon's lightsaber to bisect Maul, sending the two parts of his body falling down the shaft.[10]

Solo: A Star Wars Story[edit]

Ray Park reprised his role as Maul in Solo: A Star Wars Story, with Sam Witwer providing the voice,[11] the latter reprising the role from the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels.[a][12] At the end of the film, Maul is revealed to have become the master of the crime syndicate Crimson Dawn,[b][13] to which crime lord Dryden Vos (Paul Bettany) answers. Smuggler Qi'ra (Emilia Clarke) tells Maul that Vos and his men were killed by Tobias Beckett (Woody Harrelson) and his accomplices, but neglects to mention Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich) and Chewbacca (Joonas Suotamo). Maul commands her to meet with him on Dathomir and tells her that they will work more closely from that point forward, igniting his lightsaber.

Animated series[edit]

The Clone Wars[edit]

Darth Maul's origins are elaborated upon in the third season of the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which takes place between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. Maul is explained to have been a warrior of the Nightbrother clan on the planet Dathomir inhabited by the dominant Nightsister witchcraft society led by Mother Talzin. Maul's tattoos are described as the markings of a warrior.[c] Talzin instructs Savage Opress to find his long-lost brother. George Lucas decided to resurrect Maul for the series after developing Opress.[14]

In the fourth season, Maul is revealed to be alive, having survived his presumed death at Obi-Wan's hands. Having ended up on a junkyard planet of Lotho Minor via a dumpster craft, Maul has suffered from amnesia since Obi-Wan defeated him. Savage finds Maul and brings him to the devastated Dathomir, where Talzin restores Maul's mind and gives him robotic legs. Maul and Savage set about a plan to exact revenge on Obi-Wan.[15] Maul proceeds to attack a colonial village to draw Obi-Wan there and make an attempt on his life, only to be thwarted due to Asajj Ventress' unexpected appearance to collect a bounty on Savage. Maul and Savage overpower Obi-Wan and Ventress, but Maul lets them go, deciding to await another opportunity.[16]

In the fifth season, Maul takes Savage as his apprentice, and begins building a criminal empire. Needing followers, they travel to Florrum and manage to convince Weequay pirate Jiro and his crew to join them and betray their leader Hondo Ohnaka. Maul's pirates attack Hondo's loyal forces, and Maul once again duels Obi-Wan while Savage fights and kills Jedi Master Adi Gallia. Obi-Wan draws the two brothers away from the pirates, engaging them in a duel. Obi-Wan, though outnumbered, cuts off Savage's arm. While Maul and Savage are in the process of retreating, Hondo's crew open fire at them and shoot off one of Maul's robotic legs. Maul's ship is blasted by a missile as it attempts to take flight, but Maul and Savage manage to escape using one of the emergency pods. After several days, they are found floating in dead space and close to death by the Mandalorian Death Watch warriors, led by Pre Vizsla. They are taken back to Vizsla's settlement, and Maul's damaged cybernetic legs are replaced with a new prosthetic that resembles a more humanoid form, while Savage is fitted with a mechanical arm. Maul offers Vizsla the chance to reclaim Mandalore by recruiting Black Sun, the Pyke Syndicate, and Jabba the Hutt's minions to create the criminal syndicate named the Shadow Collective.

From there, Maul engineers Vizsla's rise to power: he orders his henchmen to attack Mandalore so the Death Watch can arrest them and appear as heroes to the denizens who have long lived under Duchess Satine Kryze's pacifist rule. Vizsla betrays Maul, imprisoning him and Savage. Easily breaking free, Maul challenges Vizsla to a duel to take over Death Watch and Mandalore; he succeeds in killing Vizsla and claims his former co-conspirator's darksaber. He wins the loyalty of most Death Watch members, but Bo-Katan retreats along with those loyal to their previous leader. Maul then puts disgraced former Prime Minister Almec, whom Satine had imprisoned for corruption, in power as a puppet leader, solidifying his control over Mandalore. Maul anticipates Satine's contacting the Jedi Council as part of his plan to get Obi-Wan to Mandalore. Once Obi-Wan arrives, Maul captures him and murders Satine in front of him, hoping to make the Jedi suffer as much as he once did. Obi-Wan is later freed by Katan's Death Watch faction.

Maul senses Darth Sidious arriving on Mandalore. Although impressed with his former apprentice's survival, Sidious declares Maul a rival and uses the Force to push and choke him and Savage. He then engages them both in lightsaber combat, fatally injuring Savage. After Savage dies from his wounds, Sidious reminds Maul of the Rule of Two, and tells him that he has been replaced. Enraged, Maul pulls out both his lightsaber and darksaber and proceeds to fight Sidious on equal ground, but Sidious ultimately defeats him. Maul pleads for mercy, but Sidious ignores him and tortures him with blasts of Force lightning. Sidious reveals that he has no intention of killing Maul, remarking that he has other uses for his former apprentice.

Maul returns in the seventh and final season, serving as the main antagonist of the first half of the Siege of Mandalore story arc (set after the events of the Son of Dathomir novel and during Revenge of the Sith), and is portayed by Ray Park using motion capture.[17] After his escape from the Separatists and downfall of his crime syndicate, as both the Hutts, the Pyke Syndicate, and the Black Sun have all left the Shadow Collective, Maul returns to rule over Mandalore. He manages to rebuild the Shadow Collective, though not as powerful as before, as the Death Watch are still loyal to him, and he somehow convinces both the Pyke Syndicate and the Black Sun to rejoin the organization, in addition to the Crimson Dawn, led by Dryden Vos. Maul first appears as a hologram in the episode "Together Again", speaking to the Pyke Syndicate, during which he reveals that he is on Mandalore. At the end of the episode, Ahsoka Tano is approached by Bo-Katan, who requests her help in defeating Maul and liberating Mandalore. In the following episode, the Siege of Mandalore begins, with Bo-Katan's Mandalorian forces being aided by part of the 501st clone legion, led by Ahsoka and Commander Rex. Maul's forces are shown to be commanded by Gar Saxon and Rook Kast (who helped free him from the Separatists' custody), as well as Almec, although the latter is captured after a fight with Bo-Katan. Soon, Maul leads Ahsoka and her forces into a trap, during which he tells the latter that he had hoped for Kenobi to come and mentions Darth Sidious, before being forced to flee when Republic reinforcements arrive, though he manages to capture ARC trooper Jesse for interrogation.

Later, Maul orders Saxon to assassinate Almec before he can relay information to the enemy, and sends the Shadow Collective lieutenants into hiding, warning them of the Galactic Empire that is about to be created. Eventually, when Ahsoka, Bo-Katan and Rex come to confront Maul in the throne room, he hands Jesse over to them, and is soon left alone with Ahsoka as the others engage in a final battle with Saxon's Mandalorian forces. Ahsoka initially accepts Maul’s request to join him in destroying Sidious after Maul warns her of the Republic’s fall, but Maul reveals that he had engineered this conflict to lure Anakin Skywalker to him, intending to kill the Jedi, having learned that Sidious intended to turn him to the Dark Side and make him his new apprentice. This causes Ahsoka to engage Maul in a duel, which leads them to a scaffold above the throne room. Maul, abandoning Saxon and his forces, tries to escape on a shuttle, but he falls off the scaffold before Ahsoka takes him into Republic custody.

Maul is imprisoned in a Mandalorian device designed for Force users and placed on a Republic Star Destroyer headed to Coruscant, where he is to stand trial before the Jedi Council. En route to Coruscant, however, Palpatine (Darth Sidious) issues Order 66, branding all Jedi as traitors to the Republic, which Maul senses through the Force. When Ahsoka is betrayed and attacked by her clone troopers, she escapes and makes her way to Maul, just as he was about to be execute by a pair of clones under Palpatine's orders. Ahsoka saves and frees Maul, much to his surprise, who then reveals that, despite having been Sidious' apprentice and known of his plan to destroy the Jedi Order, he never knew how he intended to do it, remarking the "brilliance" of using the Jedi's own army against them. He then proposes an alliance, but Ahsoka declines the idea and sends him unarmed to distract the clone troopers pursuing her. Maul manages to kill numerous clones using nothing but the Force, aiding Ahsoka's escape, before damaging the Star Destroyer's hyperdrive, causing it to crash on a small moon, though he is able to escape before the crash.

Rebels[edit]

An older Maul appears in the season 2 finale of Star Wars Rebels,[18] which takes place between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Tracked by an Imperial Inquisitor named the Eighth Brother, Maul is stranded on the ancient Sith world of Malachor, where he is discovered among the ruins by series protagonist Ezra Bridger. Introducing himself as "Old Master" and seeking revenge against Sidious, Maul leads Ezra into an ancient Sith temple, where they discover a holocron that Maul claims can give them the knowledge needed to defeat the Sith. After recovering it, the two find Ezra's master Kanan Jarrus and former Jedi Ahsoka Tano locked in battle with the Eighth Brother. They also find the Inquisitors known as the Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister, who have been pursuing the rebels for some time. Maul—having cast aside the title of Darth—reveals a new lightsaber disguised as a walking stick and joins the Jedi in battling their enemies, including Darth Vader.

After the Inquisitors retreat, Maul wins the Jedi's trust by denouncing the Sith, and tells them that he cannot defeat Vader on his own. Working together, he and the Jedi ascend towards the top of the temple and successfully kill all three Inquisitors. Then, Maul reveals his intention to take Ezra as his apprentice, having already tricked him into activating the temple. After slashing his lightsaber across Kanan's eyes, Maul briefly duels Ahsoka before facing the now-blind Kanan again, only to be knocked off the temple's edge. However, he survives the fall and escapes Malachor in the Eighth Brother's TIE fighter.

Months later, Maul takes the Ghost's crew hostage and threatens to kill them unless Kanan and Ezra bring both the Sith and Jedi holocrons to him. Maul takes the crew to a remote base in the Outer Rim where he awaits Kanan and Ezra's arrival. Then, the holocrons are hazardously united allowing Ezra and Maul to see visions of their desires: Ezra sees images of a way to destroy the Sith, images including "twin suns", while Maul sees a vision of his own. Kanan begs Ezra to look away before he sees too much of the dark side, while Maul tells him to ignore Kanan and keep looking. Ezra heeds his master's words and breaks off the connection, which causes a great explosion. Maul escapes in the confusion, uttering, "He lives."

Maul reappears after finding the rebels' secret base. He tells Ezra that because the connection was severed, they got bits and pieces of each other's visions. After the holocrons were destroyed, Maul discovered another way to get the information he needed. He travels to Dathomir with Ezra, and recreates a Nightsister spell to temporarily meld his and Ezra's minds. After this is completed, Ezra and Maul realize that they are both looking for Obi-Wan Kenobi.

In the episode "Twin Suns", Maul is shown lost on Tatooine. He decides to use Ezra to lure Obi-Wan out of hiding. His plan is ultimately successful as he tracks Ezra through the desert and the latter is rescued by Obi-Wan. Maul then comes face to face with his nemesis who ushers Ezra away. During their confrontation, Maul deduces that Obi-Wan is not only hiding, but is protecting someone. Obi-Wan realizes Maul has to die and ignites his lightsaber. In a swift duel, Obi-Wan fatally wounds Maul. As he lies dying in Obi-Wan's arms, Maul asks if the person he is protecting is the Chosen One, and Obi-Wan replies that he is. Maul declares that this "Chosen One" will avenge them and dies.

Comics[edit]

Darth Maul[edit]

In 2017, Marvel released Star Wars: Darth Maul, a 5-issue prequel series centered on Darth Maul before the events of The Phantom Menace.[19] The comic reveals that Maul was abducted as a child by Darth Sidious. During his training, Sidious took Maul to Malachor, where an ancient battle between the Jedi and the Sith occurred. Maul experienced a vision of Jedi massacring numerous Sith, which led to his hatred of them and desire for revenge, becoming fully dedicated to Sidious' goal to restore the Sith to power. As his training progressed, Maul became more impatient and wished to fight Jedi, but Sidious forbade this, as it would reveal the Sith's return to the galaxy. Instead, Maul hunted various dangerous beasts across the galaxy, and was sent to kill numerous pirates and crime lords representing a threat to Sidious' plans.

While attacking a group of pirates, one of them mistakes Maul for a Jedi and tells him about a Padawan that is about to be sold at an auction. Seeing this as an opportunity to finally kill a Jedi, Maul recruits a group of bounty hunters, including Cad Bane and Aurra Sing, who at one point save his life after he gets into a bar fight. Maul and the bounty hunters eventually learn about the place where the auction was set to take place and found the Padawan, a Twi'lek named Eldra Kaitis. After letting her be bought at the auction, Maul and his allies kill the buyers and leave in a ship stolen from the crime lord Xev Xrexus, who sold Eldra. After learning of this, Xrexus activates a bomb planted inside the ship, causing the group to crash on a moon. With hunters after them, Maul frees Eldra and the pair kills them together, before dueling each other, which results in Eldra's death. Shortly after, Maul confronts Xrexus and kills her to ensure the Sith's secrecy, before returning to Sidious to report his mission.

Age of the Republic[edit]

Darth Maul had his own one-shot comic book within the 2018–19 Age of the Republic miniseries, which depicts short stories of various characters during the Galactic Republic era. In his comic (set shortly after the events of the Darth Maul miniseries), Maul creates a criminal cartel called the "Kaitis Cartel" (inspired by the name of the Jedi Padawan Eldra Kaitis, the first Jedi Maul ever killed) and poses as a low-ranking member of the cartel to earn the attention of Force-sensitive thief Zek Peiro on Coruscant. While on a job with Peiro, Maul turns on him and kills him, before returning to Darth Sidious to report the success of the mission. Sidious then brings Maul back to Malachor, where he experiences a vision of him being a Jedi and saving a fellow Zabrak. However, while having dinner with other Zabraks as a show of thanking him, Maul is disgusted by their idolization of the Jedi and kills them all. He then awakens from his vision and is praised by Sidious for denying a peaceful life as a Jedi, though he says that it will take more than his rage and emotions to destroy the entire Jedi Order.

The events of the comic lead into The Phantom Menace.

Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir[edit]

Dark Horse Comics produced Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir based on the scripts and storyboards of an unproduced four-episode story arc intended for the seventh season of The Clone Wars. The events of the comic are set some time after Maul's defeat at Darth Sidious' hands in the fifth season of the television series, and before his eventual return in the seventh season.

After defeating Maul and killing his brother Savage Opress, Sidious takes him to a Separatist prison, where Count Dooku tortures him for information about the Shadow Collective. Prime Minister Almec of Mandalore arranges Maul's escape and the latter then heads back to Zanbar to command the Death Watch army. However, he is followed by General Grievous and his droids, who battle with Maul and the Mandalorians. While they put up a fierce fight, Maul and his minions are ultimately overwhelmed by the droids. During the battle, Maul tears through the droid ranks and attacks Grievous, but is overpowered and forced to retreat. Afterwards, Maul confers with Mother Talzin (revealed to be his biological mother) and plots to draw out Sidious by capturing Dooku and Grievous. The scheme works, and Talzin is able to restore herself to her physical form, but she sacrifices herself to save Maul. Although Maul escapes with a company of loyal Mandalorians, the Shadow Collective has disintegrated due to the conflict with Sidious, as the Hutts, Pykes, and Black Sun have all abandoned Maul.

Novels[edit]

Ahsoka[edit]

In flashbacks during the novel Star Wars: Ahsoka, it is revealed that during the final days of the Clone Wars, Maul and his forces were besieged on Mandalore by an army of clone troopers led by Ahsoka Tano and Captain Rex[d] During the siege, Maul confronts and duels Ahsoka, and though he proves to be the stronger fighter, the former Jedi outwits him and traps him in a ray shield. However, before Maul can be taken into official custody, Order 66 is enacted and the clone troopers following Ahsoka turn on her, with the exception of Rex. With Rex's life in peril, Ahsoka abandons the chance of killing Maul, allowing the former Sith to escape once again.

The events of this battle were later incorporated into the Siege of Mandalore story arc from the seventh season of The Clone Wars.[citation needed]

Video games[edit]

Darth Maul has appeared in numerous Star Wars games over the years, starting with The Phantom Menace (1999), where he serves as a boss and is fought two times, similarly to the film: once on Tatooine, and the second time on Naboo. Maul also appeared as both the final boss and a secret unlockable character in Jedi Power Battles in 2000 (which loosely follows the events of The Phantom Menace), and as a playable character in Star Wars: Demolition, where he rides his speeder bike dubbed the "Bloodfin." In 2001, Maul appeared as the final boss in Star Wars: Obi-Wan (which follows Obi-Wan Kenobi throughout the events of The Phantom Menace), as a playable character in Star Wars: Super Bombad Racing (riding a miniature version of his ship, the Scimitar), and in the real-time strategy game Star Wars: Galactic Battegrounds. He is also a secret unlockable character in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3 (2001), and a playable character in Star Wars: Racer Revenge (2002), where he once again rides his Scimitar ship.

Maul later appeared as a boss and unlockable playable character in Lego Star Wars: The Video Game (2005) and Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga (2007), as well as a playable character in Star Wars: Battlefront II (2005), Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron (2007), and Star Wars Battlefront: Elite Squadron (2009). In Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (2008), PROXY, a shape-shifting robot belonging to the game's protagonist, Starkiller, fights the player at one point, taking the shape of various opponents, including Darth Maul; Maul is also available as an alternate in-game appearance for Starkiller via DLC.

Following Maul's return in The Clone Wars TV series, he was included as a boss in the massively multiplayer online game Clone Wars Adventures in 2011; this was the first video game appearance of Maul with his new robotic legs. The Lego Star Wars: The Video Game and The Complete Saga version of Darth Maul is also available as an unlockable playable character in Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars (2011), based on the titular television series. The same year also saw the cancelation of Battle of the Sith Lords, a game set before the events of The Phantom Menace with Darth Maul as the main playable character, due to Disney's acquisition of Lucasfilm and LucasArts.

In Disney Infinity 3.0 (2015), Maul is a playable character and the final boss of the "Twilight of the Republic" playset. In Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2016), he is an unlockable playable character; The Clone Wars version of Maul is also playable via DLC. Maul has also appeared in a number of mobile games, including Galaxy of Heroes (2015) and Force Arena (2017). Most recently, Maul has been featured as a playable character in Star Wars Battlefront II (2017); his default appearance is that from The Phantom Menace, but in the final update of the game, released in April 2020, he received an alternate skin based on his appearance in Star Wars Rebels. Maul is also set to appear as a playable character and boss in the upcoming Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga.

Legends[edit]

With the 2012 acquisition of Lucasfilm by The Walt Disney Company, most of the licensed Star Wars novels and comics produced since the originating 1977 film Star Wars were rebranded as Star Wars Legends and declared non-canon to the franchise in April 2014.[20][21][22]

Comics[edit]

Darth Maul is a 4-issue comics series published by Dark Horse Comics featuring Darth Maul. The series is set in the shortly before the Battle of Naboo in Episode I – The Phantom Menace. The story follows Maul in his mission to destroy the leadership of the well-feared crime syndicate Black Sun. Maul spends his time serving under Darth Sidious, killing countlessly. His main target in the series is the leader of Black Sun, some time before Prince Xizor takes command of it.

Several sources depict Maul returning from the dead in several different forms. The story "Resurrection" from Star Wars Tales #9 depicts a cult creating a duplicate of Maul as a replacement for Darth Vader, only for Vader to kill him. The story Phantom Menaces in Star Wars Tales #17 (set after Return of the Jedi) depicts Luke Skywalker visiting Maul's home planet of Iridonia in an ambassadorial capacity, where he faces a "solid state hologram" of Maul projected from Maul's salvaged brain as part of a scientist's attempt to recreate Maul as Iridonia's "champion". Luke recognizes the disruption that Maul's existence is causing in the Force, and shuts down the life-support systems keeping the brain alive.

In 2005, Dark Horse Comics published Star Wars: Visionaries, a compilation of non-canonical short comics made by the creators of Revenge of the Sith. One story, "Old Wounds", depicts Maul with longer horns on his head, having survived his bisection at Obi-Wan's hands, with his missing bottom half replaced with cybernetic legs, similar to those of General Grievous (and his eventual revival in The Clone Wars). He follows Obi-Wan throughout the galaxy, finally tracking him down on Tatooine a few years after the events of Revenge of the Sith. Maul taunts Obi-Wan, saying that after he kills him, he will take a toddler-aged Luke Skywalker to his master, Emperor Palpatine. Maul plans to kill Vader and resume his rightful place at Palpatine's side. He ignites his new double-bladed lightsaber and engages Obi-Wan in a duel, but Obi-Wan again bests him in combat, cutting off his opponent's horns. Maul is killed by a blaster bolt to the head from Owen Lars. Obi-Wan thanks Owen, and says he will take Maul's body into the desert and burn it.

Novels[edit]

In early 2012, a young adult novel entitled Star Wars: The Wrath of Darth Maul was released by Scholastic. Maul is also featured prominently in comic series starting in this period, The Clone Wars: The Sith Hunters and Darth Maul: Death Sentence. Set around the various episodes of The Clone Wars that featured Maul, the two books detail his and Savage Opress' journey across the galaxy as they seek vengeance on the Jedi.

In the 2012 novel Darth Plagueis, the titular Sith lord sends his apprentice, Darth Sidious, to the Force-rich world of Dathomir. A Dathomiri witch, or Nightsister, senses Sidious' power in the Force and approaches him. Assuming he is a Jedi, she begs him to take her Zabrak infant son. She realizes that Sidious is not a Jedi, and explains how she is trying to save her son from a Nightsister named Talzin, who killed Maul's father. It is implied that Maul has a twin brother and that Talzin is only aware of one child. Sidious realizes the infant is strong in the Force, and would become a threat if found by the Jedi. Concealing the existence of his own master, Sidious raises Maul to believe that he is a Sith apprentice, but he actually intends him to be an expendable minion rather than an heir. Maul himself acknowledges his shortcomings, such as his limited understanding of politics, even as he tries to become a true Sith.

Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter[edit]

Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter is a novel by Michael Reaves released on February 1, 2001. It is a prequel novel occurring about six months before the events of The Phantom Menace. The cover art was by David Stevenson. Del Rey aired a TV commercial for the novel in 1999.[citation needed] As portrayed in the novel, Maul was raised by Sidious for as long as he can remember. Sidious then trains Maul as a Sith, marking his body with Sith tattoos. Maul initially goes on several missions of terror for his master, killing politicians, crime bosses, merchants and warlords.

Sidious meets secretly with his Neimoidian contacts in the Trade Federation to finalize details in the plan to blockade Naboo. One member of the delegation is missing; suspecting betrayal, Sidious orders Maul to hunt down the traitor. Maul completes this task, but learns that the traitor had recorded proof of the Sith's manipulation of the Naboo blockade on a holocron to sell for profit. A suicidal attack by a Trade Federation-hired bounty hunter interferes with Maul's plan and the holocron is purchased by a Corellian con man named Lorn Pavan. Pavan realizes the nature of the information and seeks to take it to the Jedi Temple. Maul, for his part, is ordered by Sidious to retrieve the holocron and kill Pavan and anyone else who might have the information. Meanwhile, a Jedi Padawan named Darsha Assant is faced with the Jedi trials to become a full-fledged Jedi Knight, and tries to save a member of Black Sun (which Maul had crippled in Saboteur).

Pavan attempts to do business with a Hutt crime lord in one of the lower levels in Coruscant, but Maul arrives and kills the Hutt. Pavan escapes into the caverns where they meet Darsha and her master. The Jedi begin escorting Pavan and his droid to the temple but Maul soon attacks them. Darsha's master is slain while attempting to buy time for the others. Pavan and Darsha escape various dangers of Coruscant's subterranean levels before finding themselves in another battle. Darsha, realizing that she cannot defeat Maul, draws out their duel long enough for Pavan's droid to repair a carbonite-freezing unit and seal Pavan and the droid inside it. Darsha plunges her lightsaber into a pile of volatile gas canisters, killing her and causing an explosion that Maul barely escapes. Upon surveying the scene, Maul feels no trace of Pavan in the Force, not realizing that the carbonite hibernation has made his lifeforce undetectable.

An automatic timer frees Pavan from hibernation and he goes after Maul on his own. Pavan follows Maul to a Republic space station and sneaks up on Maul, stunning him momentarily before he awakens, severes Pavan's right hand, and pursues him through the station's service tubes. Pavan barely makes it into a public area where Maul cannot follow, and unwittingly gives the holocron to Senator Palpatine of Naboo, not realizing that Palpatine is Maul's Sith Master. After recovering, Pavan starts to leave his quarters, only to be confronted by Maul, who kills him as a worthy opponent.

Darth Maul: Saboteur[edit]

Darth Maul: Saboteur is a short story by James Luceno. It was released in ebook form, with a length equivalent to about 55 printed pages, on February 1, 2001. It was also published in the back of the paperback edition of Michael Reaves' Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter.

The story is about Darth Maul and takes place roughly a year before The Phantom Menace. It recounts Maul's first solo mission and attempt to destroy two mining companies so the Trade Federation can take them over.

Maul: Lockdown[edit]

Maul: Lockdown is a Star Wars novel written by Joe Schreiber, released by Del Rey Books on January 28, 2014.[23] It was the last novel to be released in the Star Wars Legends line of the franchise.[21][24][22] Before the events of The Phantom Menace, Sith lords Darth Plagueis and Darth Sidious send their disciple Darth Maul to a galactic prison to recover a powerful weapon. There, an insidious gambling empire pits the galaxy's most terrible criminals against each other in gladiatorial combat, and Maul must face Jabba the Hutt and various other horrifying obstacles to complete his mission.

In popular culture[edit]

Since the release of The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul has proven to be a popular character. Whilst the movie received a mixed reaction from fans and critics alike, the character was one of the most highly praised parts of the film. IGN named Darth Maul the 16th greatest Star Wars character, noting, "Of the countless characters to walk in and out of the Star Wars saga, none looks or acts more badass than Darth Maul."[25]

Darth Maul-related merchandise was popular among Hasbro Star Wars toy lines, with plastic recreations of his double bladed lightsaber and various action figures in his likeness developed. Darth Maul was the focal point of the toy marketing campaign surrounding the 2012 re-release of The Phantom Menace, being featured on the packaging for the toy line.[26]

Darth Maul fan film[edit]

A Darth Maul fan film titled Darth Maul: Apprentice was released on YouTube on March 5, 2016.

"Darth Maul kids" viral videos[edit]

At least two videos of kids trying to imitate Darth Maul have gone viral: the 2003 Star Wars Kid, which spawned an internet meme, and another which went viral in December 2017 of an 8-year-old Ontario boy pretending to be Darth Maul and displaying his martial arts skills.[27]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Peter Serafinowicz had recorded new dialogue for Solo, but his dialogue was over dubbed by Witwer, as the producers wanted to keep continuity with The Clone Wars.
  2. ^ According to writer Jon Kasdan, the name was a reference to Maul's red appearance.
  3. ^ Earlier sources identified his body art as Sith markings.
  4. ^ Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi were dispatched to Mandalore with Ahsoka, but were immediately called back to Coruscant to rescue Chancellor Palpatine, thus leading into the opening sequence of Revenge of the Sith.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Maul, Darth". Star Wars Databank. Lucasfilm. Retrieved 2011-09-24.
  2. ^ "Darth Maul: Early Life".
  3. ^ Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir. Marvel Comics. November 21, 2017.
  4. ^ "Twin Suns: Wookieepedia".
  5. ^ "Designing a Sith Lord". Archived from the original on 2015-02-07. Retrieved 2015-02-06.
  6. ^ Cotta Vaz, Mark (July 1999). "Phantom Visions". Cinefex (78): 39–68.
  7. ^ Moyers, Bill (1999-04-26). "Of Myth And Men". Time Magazine. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
  8. ^ a b Designing a Sith Lord Archived June 11, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Wetmore, Kevin J., Jr. (10 August 2017). The Empire Triumphant: Race, Religion and Rebellion in the Star Wars Films. McFarland & Company. p. 127. ISBN 9781476611716.
  10. ^ Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace
  11. ^ Simpson, George (24 May 2018). "Solo 2: How two MAJOR Star Wars villains are set up for the inevitable sequel". Daily Express. Express Newspapers. Retrieved 24 May 2018.
  12. ^ "The Solo: A Star Wars Story Ending Explained". GamesRadar. May 17, 2018. Retrieved May 19, 2018.
  13. ^ Sowa, Alexander (15 April 2020). "The Clone Wars' Reference to Maul's Solo Cameo Isn't Enough". CBR. Retrieved 22 April 2020.
  14. ^ Blauvelt, Christian (October 12, 2011). "Darth Maul Lives! 'Star Wars: The Clone Wars' shows his life after vivisection". EW.com. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  15. ^ Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008 TV series)
  16. ^ Valby, Karen. "Entertainment Weekly – Darth Maul Lives!". Insidetv.ew.com. Retrieved 2012-06-13.
  17. ^ Lussier, Germain (April 15, 2019). "How Ray Park and The Mandalorian Are Upping the Action in Star Wars: The Clone Wars". io9. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  18. ^ "'Star Wars: Rebels' resurrects a familiar old foe". Ew.com. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  19. ^ Juba, Joe (2016-11-14). "Darth Maul To Star In New Star Wars Comic Book - News". www.GameInformer.com. Retrieved 2016-12-19.
  20. ^ Hood, Bryan (December 15, 2015). "Why Disney Blew Up More Than 30 Years of Star Wars Canon". Bloomberg. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  21. ^ a b "The Legendary Star Wars Expanded Universe Turns a New Page". StarWars.com. April 25, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
  22. ^ a b "Disney and Random House announce relaunch of Star Wars Adult Fiction line". StarWars.com. April 25, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
  23. ^ Anders, Charlie Jane (January 24, 2013). "The guy who put zombies in the Star Wars universe is sending Darth Maul behind bars". io9. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  24. ^ McMilian, Graeme (April 25, 2014). "Lucasfilm Unveils New Plans for Star Wars Expanded Universe". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
  25. ^ "Darth Maul- #16". Ign.com. Archived from the original on 2012-05-29. Retrieved 2012-06-13.
  26. ^ "Star Wars Crafts and Creativity - StarWars.com". StarWars.com. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  27. ^ "Eight year old karate kid goes viral with Darth Maul skills". CTV News. 7 December 2017. Retrieved 8 July 2018.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]