Movies and Shows

How Legends Already Gave Star Wars Its Own What If…? Series

Star Wars fans interested in seeing a similar series to Marvel’s What If…? may find what they’re looking for in Legends-era’s Star Wars Infinities.

Fans of the Star Wars franchise have expressed interest in the possibility of a Star Wars multiverse anthology series, similar to Marvel’s What If…?, though the Legends era already did this. The MCU series was based on Marvel’s 1977 comic series What If, which told standalone stories that explored how the Marvel universe might be different if one detail in a storyline changed. These comics were incredibly popular, and, in some cases, spawned new and fan-favorite comic series, such as Spider-Girl and the subsequent MC2 universe. With the What If…? TV series proving so popular, it’s not surprising that a Star Wars equivalent has been requested by some fans.

The Star Wars franchise is an incredibly malleable playground for creatives. Having been inspired by a variety of genres, including fantasy, classic science fiction, samurai films, and westerns, nearly any type of story could fit into the franchise somewhere. Star Wars has had two main continuities since its 1977 Star Wars debut: canon and Legends. Legends was the first official continuity, including the original and prequel trilogy films and spinoff material from 1977 to April of 2014. Canon includes the six original saga films, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and most material released after the April 2014 Legends rebranding.

While Star Wars doesn’t have an animated TV show equivalent to What If…?, it once had a comic series that explored alternate narratives. The Star Wars Infinities series, which was published from 2001 to 2004, consisted of three four-issue miniseries’, each telling an alternate version of a Star Wars original trilogy film. In A New Hope, Luke’s proton torpedoes only delay the Death Star’s superweapon instead of destroying the station. In The Empire Strikes Back, Luke dies on Hoth before Han could save him. Return of the Jedi has Leia and Luke’s plan to rescue Han Solo fail.

Each Infinities miniseries leads to fascinating story twists on the classic Star Wars films. Leia ends up being trained as a Sith in A New Hope, while she takes Luke’s place on Dagobah in Empire, completing her training under Yoda and becoming a powerful Jedi. Darth Vader survives the Battle of Endor in the Return of the Jedi story, becoming a Jedi again and wearing a new cybernetic suit that replaces his Sith Lord appearance. Infinites told alternate universe tales based on the Legends continuity and included Legends lore and characters such as Vilmarh Grahrk.

There was never an Infinities series for any of the Star Wars prequel trilogy films, unfortunately, despite their tragic narratives being the perfect fodder for alternate universe narratives. What if Qui-Gon failed to free Anakin on Tatooine? How would the Clone Wars have changed if Anakin and Obi-Wan captured Dooku on Geonosis? What would be the ramifications of Anakin remaining a Jedi and helping Mace Windu defeat Palpatine? A Legends-era Infinities comic series or a canon animated TV show could tell fascinating prequel-era stories.

If the Star Wars Infinities made a comeback, it would likely only apply to the post-2014 canon universe. This would mean that prequel-era stories would reflect the lore of 2008’s The Clone Wars, but it’d also mean that the Star Wars sequel trilogy and spinoff films could be explored. With the Legends-era Star Wars Infinites as its inspiration, a Star Wars equivalent to What If…? could tell a plethora of fascinating alt-universe stories based on more than just the original trilogy.

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