Andor: 10 References & Callbacks To Rogue One & Other Star Wars Movies


As Andor begins to pick up speed, it has chosen carefully placed references and callbacks to prior Star Wars movies like Star Wars: Rogue One instead of flashy iconic Easter eggs. There aren’t any cameos from huge legacy characters, nor are there buzzy mentions of Jedi and Sith. Following ancillary protagonist Cassian Andor as he makes his first steps towards joining the Rebellion, the series has freedom to leave shameless namedropping behind, and sprinkle its espionage-filled world with creatures, planets, and ships that provide a connective tissue to other Star Wars films that doesn’t seem distracting.


The characters mention planets and people in their context so they make sense, not to remind fans about another recognizable thing in Star Wars. And because Andor isn’t quite as constrained as Obi-Wan Kenobi or The Book of Boba Fett, it has more breathing room to pick and choose how it makes the galaxy seem so large and yet so interconnected.

Steelpecker – Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Looking closely in the shipyards, eagle-eyed fans might be able to spot a few familiar faces among the gleaming metal and scrap; steelpeckers. These voracious little avian can be found throughout the deserts of Jakku, where they peck at the steel left over from fallen Star Destroyers and other rusting ships.

Not only do steelpeckers carry on the great tradition of little Star Wars creatures toiling in the background of any planets’ scenery, they also act as the sort of Easter egg that is subtle, the kind that enriches the complexity of the galaxy and its inhabitants rather than distracting from it. A steelpecker munching on metal scraps makes perfect sense here.

Stuffed Bantha – Star Wars: Rogue One

During a tracking shot in Cassian’s childhood room, a stuffed Bantha can be seen referencing the beasts of burden on Tatooine. In Rogue One, a young Jyn Erso’s childhood bedroom has a stormtrooper doll which she takes as she flees from Director Krennic’s Death Troopers.

Though these characters are worlds apart, they were both children once who innocently interacted with the galaxy through toys of creatures and people they may never see. It makes the galaxy seem both incredibly large and connected on little levels.

Republic Gunships – Star Wars: Episode II – Attack Of The Clones

Flashbacks featuring Cassian (“Kassa”) on his home planet of Kenari show a planet on the verge of being pulled into the Clone Wars. Maarva removes Kassa before he can be gunned down by Republic forces tracking the Separatists to his system.

Fans will find that seeing LAAT’s flying towards the wreckage of the Separatist ship packs a different punch when the Republic drop-ships, first seen in the Battle of Geonosis in Star Wars: Episode I – Attack of the Clones, are suddenly considered a threat to the hero.

Reference To Wobani – Star Wars: Rogue One

At one point, both Cassian and Bix are asked by Timm Karlo if they’re going to bid on the “Wobani run,” which promises an encouraging payload. Cassian does eventually travel to Wobani for a different reason – to rescue Jyn Erso from prison.

This is a fun reference that indicates the invisible hand of destiny at work, as though fate is pulling him towards Erso in an inescapable way. Destiny and free choice have always been large dichotomous forces in Star Wars, and they play no less an important role between characters who are regular people than Force-sensitive characters like Jedi and Sith.

Separatist Insignia – Star Wars: Episode II – Attack Of The Clones

When Cassian (then “KAssa”) and the other children encounter the downed ship on Kenari, they encounter several bodies strewn about the wreckage. The white and gray uniforms bear the Separatist Insignia, a symbol closely associated with the prequel trilogy.

A key part of Cassian’s character is rooted in the fact that his father protested the militarization of the Republic, and though he wasn’t completely a Separatist, he still represents a faction of the galaxy that didn’t approve of the Republic’s corruption. At the end of the Clone Wars, when the Republic became the Empire, the Separatists went from being considered enemies to being thought of as freedom fighters against tyranny.

T-16 Skyhopper – Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

Scenes in the shipyard offer a treasure trove of scraps, with a few ships from the original trilogy buried like diamonds in the rough. Those eagle-eyed enough to recall what a T-16 Skyhopper looked like in A New Hope will be able to pick out its familiar shape.

Luke makes reference to “shooting womprats back home” in his T-16 Skyhopper, and though he’s never shown flying the sporty little airspeeder, in the scene where he’s playing with a model of one, the engine and fin of his real T-16 Skyhopper can be seen parked just outside the door to his room. Getting to see a full shot of a real T-16 Skyhopper isn’t just a fun Easter egg, it’s a connective fiber to another innocent boy who, like Cassian, had little connection to the conflicts in the galaxy until the fight became personal.

Kyber Crystal – Star Wars: Rogue One

If the blue kyber crystal necklace that Luthen gives Cassian as mission collateral seems familiar, that’s because Jyn Erso had a similar one in Rogue One from her father. At this point, kyber is becoming more and more valuable as the Empire gathers it from every corner of the galaxy to power its Death Star. To Cassian, the necklace represents a price, whereas for Jyn it’s priceless as the last memento she has to remember her father.

With their rare connection to the Force, kyber crystals are an incredibly desirable (and dangerous) resource, and a representation of wealth to the impoverished smuggler. Not only does Luthen’s kyber necklace act as a callback to Rogue One, it contextualizes kyber crystals in the galactic economy, while at the same time offering one more way for Jyn and Cassian to seem fated to meet.

Wookiee Armor From The Battle Of Kashyyyk – Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge Of The Sith

In Luthen Rael’s quest for valuable things he relies on being an antique dealer, using the Galactic Antiquities and Objects of Interest as a base of operations on Coruscant In his shop, he can successfully speak with the most prominent members of the Imperial Senate without his wealthy customers suspecting that he harbors anti-Imperial sentiments. Whether it’s information, people, or priceless artifacts, Luthen knows how to get anything.

His shop is a treasure trove of Easter eggs and references to all manner of Star Wars media, from Sith armor in The Force Unleashed and a Twi’lek Kalikori from Star Wars Rebels, to Gungan energy shields from Star Wars; Episode I – The Phantom Menace, and even Indiana Jones’ bullwhip and Sankara stones from The Temple of Doom. Some of the most fascinating artifacts include Wookiee armor from the Battle of Kashyyyk, one of the most important battles of the Clone Wars.

Reference To Scarif – Star Wars: Rogue One

During the meeting between various members of the ISB, Scarif is mentioned as being a point of interest, which isn’t surprising considering it’s one of the biggest repositories of Imperial Intelligence in the galaxy. One that the Empire will have to keep even closer eye on in Rogue One, when it houses the Death Star plans.

Considering how close Andor will lead up to the events of Rogue One, it’s important for these references to plant the seeds that make its narrative imperative. Now, rather than appear out of nowhere in the movie, it has some context.

Reference To The Battle Of Mimban – Solo: A Star Wars Story

In Episode 4, Cassian discusses being involved in the Battle of Mimban, something that could possibly connect one prominent smuggler to another. A young Han Solo also had a stint on the planet Mimban in service to the Empire, where he fought in the infantry and witnessed the horrors of war.

Not only is this a fun way to connect Cassian and Han, it also helps to put certain conflicts in perspective, and show the reach of the Empire. It’s impossible to think that any young man of military age wouldn’t have gotten conscripted.

NEXT: 10 Harsh Realities Andor Reveals About Life Under The Empire


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