- Rich Hardy
Obscure Heroes and Villains from the EU: Jolli
When one thinks Star Wars many different things may come to one’s mind. Starships zipping around in outer space, gallant Jedi knights dueling it out with evil Sith Lords, and soldiers going to battle across a sweeping galaxy. Star Wars is a fantastic mix of classic fantasy tales and epic myths set in a sci-fi universe, and with those classical architypes comes many different types of characters- including rogues. Not everyone in the Star Wars universe picks a side in the constant struggles for good and evil, many like Han Solo and Talon Kardde chose to live on the fringe, making ends meet, doing what they must to survive. Among them is a space pirate named Jolli, a bloodthirsty tough neck who not even a Rancor would want to tangle with!
Jolli’s story begins on a frontier world, living with a group of outlaws on the run from the Galactic Empire There she would live happily with her mother and father until one fateful day when Imperial Stormtroopers sieged the outlaw stronghold and began killing off the runaways. Hunkered down behind heaps of rubble, Jolli would witness her father abandon her and her mother, claiming they weren’t “good enough”. This would scar young Jolli who was only young girl, leaving her with a hatred of men and always wanting to prove she was “good enough”. She was luckily able to survive the Imperial attack, and as she grew older, she joined Crimson Jack’s pirate crew.
Not long after the Battle of Yavin, while Han Solo prepared to pay off his debt to Jabba the Hutt with his reward money, Jolli would encounter the smuggler as he was captured by Jack’s Star Destroyer. After stealing his treasure, Jolli would wish to kill Solo, but was ordered not to by her pirate captain. She would soon meet up with Solo again, this time though the pirates had also captured Rebel leader Princess Leia. Leia would trick the pirates into thinking there was a rebel treasure in the Drexel System, and with the help of the Millennium Falcon’s Navigational Tapes, they plotted their course and began the journey. Jolli would be impressed by Leia, due to how she stood up for herself and punched Han who had tried to kiss her. Jolli would compliment her but would find herself insulted when Leia suggested to her that not all men were evil. Leia even admitted to Jolli that Han was in fact a good kisser, which infuriated the female pirate who was developing feelings for the scruffy nerf-herder.
Upon arriving in the Drexel System, Crimson Jack’s Star Destroyer would get trapped in a Sonic-Jammer powered by the Space Wreckers based on the unnamed ocean world they flew towards. Han, Chewie and Leia would all escape Jack’s ship to rescue Luke (who had recently crash landed on the planet) and once the Sonic-Jammer was destroyed in the raging water-battle happening down below, Jack would allow Jolli to unleash her anger and kill Han Solo. She hopped into one of their only available fighters left, a Y-Wing Bomber, and pursue the Millennium Falcon.
Jolli would see this as the perfect opportunity to prove herself worthy and would furiously chase after Solo. When she was unable to take the Falcon out with her fighter’s weapons alone, she tried a last-ditch attempt to crash into the freighter. Jolli’s Y-Wing was left crippled, but she was uninjured and left to drift in space. She would call Jack for help but was denied, who feared pulling her back in may affect his outer space rendezvous with Han Solo. He then taunted Jolli, saying she’d have to make it back on her own… if she were “good enough”. These words struck Jolli, remembering her horrifying experience as a child, and while Jack and Solo geared up in breathing masks and met outside their ships, Jolli used what was left of her fighter’s power to collide head on with the bridge of Jack’s Star Destroyer. With Jack stuck in the void of outer space, and Han Solo saved, Jolli had defeated an enemy and saved the one man she had started developing a liking to. Soon after, Han pulled her body out of the wreckage and gave Jolli her first and last kiss.
Jolli is an interesting character as she was originally created in Marvel’s original Star Wars series from the late 70’s. At the time she may have had the most fleshed out character arc of many of the series’ original characters, until Valence came along at least. Jolli stands as a unique character in the Star Wars EU, mostly due to her hatred of men due to her traumatic childhood. One of the great things about the EU was that it was able to present numerous kinds of characters, all with their own personalities and back stories, which fleshed out the universe in incredible ways. That’s all for now you space pirates! (As I channel my inner Lando Calrissian) Go forth and plunder…