This Star Wars: Andor article contains spoilers.
Andor reached its crescendo this week, as the season finale brought death and destruction to the streets of Ferrix. When Maarva’s final message to her people sparks a riot, the Empire opens fire on the town, an atrocity that is sure to echo across the galaxy as more people rise up against the fascist government. During the chaos, Cassian breaks into the Imperial command center on Ferrix and rescues Bix, and later makes sure all of his loved ones get off the planet safely. But he decides to stay behind. As Star Wars fans already know, Cassian’s destiny lies elsewhere.
Here’s what Cassian’s decisions in the season finale mean for season 2 and beyond…
What Does Cassian’s Choice Mean?
We knew this Andor moment had to happen eventually: at the end of the episode, Cassian decides that he’s done running. When we meet him at the start of the series, Cassian’s out for himself, a thief who’s happy to steal from the Empire but isn’t wiling to fight them head on. He doesn’t care about rebellions or being a part of a greater cause. Cassian certainly isn’t interested in what the Imperial oppressors are up to in other parts of the galaxy.
That all changes after he’s unjustly imprisoned on Narkina 5, where inmates are forced to work themselves to death for the Empire. After he hatches an escape plan with the other prisoners and makes it back to Niamos, Cassian and Melshi make a pact to tell the rest of the galaxy what the Empire is really doing to its citizens. It’s clear that Cassian is ready to expose the Empire and fight them.
But first he needs to take a detour to Ferrix to say goodbye to his late adoptive mother Maarva and rescue Bix from the ISB. This all leads to a final showdown between Cassian and Luthen on the Fondor. Cassian deduces from the increased Rebel presence on Ferrix that Luthen was planning to kill him in order to preserve the Rebellion’s secrets (after the Aldhani heist, Cassian ditched Vel, making him a loose end Luthen needed to take care of). But Cassian suggests there’s another option: Luthen should take him in and make Cassian one of his agents.
Fans of Rogue One of course know that Cassian’s decision to join the Rebellion is meant to set up his later role in the movie. After all, when we first met Cassian in 2016, he was already a high-ranking Rebel spy and also a skilled assassin, the one the leaders of the Rebel Alliance trust with killing Galen Erso, the chief scientist behind the creation of the Death Star. Joining Luthen is the first step toward that future for Cassian as well as his ultimate demise on Scarif at the end of Rogue One.
The Death Star
Speaking of the Death Star, a surprise post-credit scene shows us that construction on the Imperial’s superweapon is well underway. We watch as little droids use the parts that Cassian and the other Narkina prisoners were building to form pieces of the space station. This is of course a bit of foreshadowing for what’s to come: we know the Death Star will play a big part in the final act of Cassian’s Star Wars story. He’ll later become one of the brave heroes who sacrifices his own life to steal the Death Star plans for the Rebellion. What this Andor post-credits scene reveals about that ending is that Cassian was unknowingly forced to help build the very weapon that will eventually kill him. Palpatine would call it ironic.
But is there more to that Death Star tease than just a simple bit of dramatic irony? It’s possible that the space station’s debut on the show means Andor season 2 will delve deeper into its creation. Is ISB officer Dedra Meero meant to play a part in keeping the Death Star secret? Will we get a Mads Mikkelsen cameo via Galen Erso? Can Disney+ afford CGI Peter Cushing?
Either way, Andor wants you to know that, yes, the Death Star is definitely out there and that the show is closer to Rogue One and A New Hope than ever before.
Where’s Cassian’s Sister?
Besides stealing from the Empire for the credits, Cassian seemed to be driven by one specific motivation: his search for his long-lost sister Kerri (Belle Swarc). It’s this quest to find his sister that first gets him in trouble on Morlana One, which in turn leads him right into the hands of Luthen Rael. But despite his sister’s whereabouts being set up as a central mystery at the start of the season, the show doesn’t revisit this after the first arc.
One can easily make the case that Cassian simply had no time to resume his search for Kerri after being chased off Ferrix, pulling off a heist on Aldhani, and getting thrown in the slammer. And now that he’s joined up with the Rebellion, he’ll probably have even less time to pursue her. Does Cassian giving his life to the Rebellion mean he’s given up the search after Maarva told him earlier in the season that there were no other survivors from whatever disaster befell Kenari?
There are many theories regarding who Cassian’s sister might be, with one of the most popular being that the mysterious Kleya Marki (Elizabeth Dulau) is actually a grown-up Kerri. Of course, you’d have to assume that Kleya hasn’t done her research on Cassian before sending Vel to kill him. Which, as Luthen’s right hand, seems unlikely. We’ll have to wait and see if season 2 gives us some better answers.
What We Know About Andor Season 2
One thing we do know for sure is that Andor season 2 is definitely on the way. In fact, it’s currently shooting in the UK as you read this sentence, with an eye on wrapping principal photography by next August, according to Collider. Hopefully, this means we’ll get to enjoy the further adventures of Cassian Andor sometime in 2024.
Yes, that’s a long wait to get the second half of this two-part saga. Fortunately, showrunner Tony Gilroy has revealed a few details about what fans should expect when the show does return. For one thing, he’s already told us when on the Star Wars timeline the second season takes place and how much time it will cover: while Andor season 1 starts five years before Rogue One and covers a single year in Cassian’s life, the second season will chronicle the next four leading right into the events of Rogue One.
“We’ll do three episodes, and we’ll jump a year. And we’ll do another three episodes, and we’ll jump a year. And we’ll come back to the final four episodes, and those episodes will be the last three days really before Rogue One, and the final scene of the show will be walking you into Rogue One,” Gilroy told Polygon.
Gilroy confirmed to Collider that season 2 will begin a time jump set “a year later after what you just saw. [A] great deal has happened in the interim.” That means we’ll likely find Cassian in a slightly different place than where we left him in the season 1 finale. According to the showrunner, that also means we’ll finally get to see how Cassian met his trusty ex-Imperial interrogation droid K-2SO (Alan Tudyk), telling Collider, “I think that’s one of the responsibilities of Part 2. Obviously, if we’re going to walk into Rogue, we have to deal with that.”
Since the second season has to connect more directly to Rogue One, fans should expect to see the formation of the Rebel Alliance — in season 1 all the Rebel cells in the galaxy are still working separately from each other — as well as how they established their secret base on Yavin IV. In fact, Gilroy has already confirmed that we’ll get to see the fourth moon of Yavin in some capacity next season.
A new group of directors and writers will be joining the creative team for Andor season 2 as well. Ariel Kleiman (Yellowjackets), Janus Metz (True Detective), and Alonso Ruizpalacios (Museo) will direct the second batch of 12 episodes, with Kleiman helming six episodes while Metz and Ruizpalacios take charge of three each. Joining the writers room alongside Tony and Dan Gilroy and Beau Willimon is Tom Bissell (The Vanishing of Ethan Carter).
With Gilroy’s Rebel Alliance all set and filming already underway, the showrunner has a clear map of where Andor is going next.
“This first half was about him becoming a revolutionary and committing to it, and sort of marrying himself to it, and sort of the blood oath,” Gilroy told Polygon. “Cassian’s commitment to the cause is not in doubt. If it was about him becoming a revolutionary, then the second half is about him becoming a leader.”
Star Wars: Andor is streaming now on Disney+.