- "Why, you tin-plated traitor!"
- ―Ahsoka Tano learns 4-A7's true loyalties
4-A7 was a masculine-programmed RA-7 protocol droid that served the Confederacy of Independent Systems and dark acolyte Asajj Ventress during the Clone Wars, a galactic conflict fought between the Confederacy and the Galactic Republic. During the Battle of Teth in 22 BBY, 4-A7 was stationed at a B'omarr Order Monastery, where the Confederacy had placed the kidnapped son of the crime lord Jabba Desilijic Tiure, Rotta. After the Republic's Torrent Company defeated the monastery's battle droid defense, Ventress dispatched 4-A7 to greet their enemies. Masquerading as a caretaker droid, he claimed they had freed him and informed the company's Jedi General, Anakin Skywalker, that Rotta was being kept on the detention level.
After Skywalker and his Jedi Padawan, Commander Ahsoka Tano, rescued the infant from his prison, 4-A7 recorded them placing the screaming Rotta in a backpack. This footage was sent to Count Dooku on Tatooine, who used it to make Jabba believe the Republic were the kidnappers. 4-A7's Separatist loyalties were later uncovered when Tano found him boarding a freighter with several battle droids. Dropping the caretaker act, he ordered the droids to kill Tano to prevent Rotta's rescue, but she quickly managed to destroy the three combat units. Turning her weapon against the protocol droid, 4-A7 told her to not dare kill him, only to then be swiftly decapitated.
Assault on TethEdit
- "Who are you?"
"Merely the humble caretaker, O mighty sir. You have liberated me from those dreadful battle bots. I am most thankful."
"Where is the Hutt?"
"The battle bots kept their prisoners on the detention level. I must warn you it is very dangerous down there, my friend."
- ―Anakin Skywalker meets 4-A7 during the droid's caretaker act
Manufactured by Confederacy of Independent Systems sympathizers in Arakyd Industries, 4-A7 was a prototype spy droid and an RA-7 series unit produced early in the Clone Wars, a major galactic conflict where the Confederacy fought the Galactic Republic, in 22 BBY. During this year, the Confederacy launched a plan to gain access to the secret hyperlanes and exclusive access to the area of space controlled by the Hutt Clan, and 4-A7 was intended to play a part in the operation. Confederate Head of State Count Dooku's assassin, the dark acolyte Asajj Ventress, kidnapped Rotta, the son of Hutt crime lord Jabba Desilijic Tiure, and brought him to an abandoned B'omarr Order Monastery that was occupied by the Confederacy on the Wild Space planet of Teth. 4-A7 and a force of battle droids were also stationed at the monastery. As the Separatists had planned, the Republic eventually discovered it was the location of Rotta.
Hoping to rescue the infant in order to make their own alliance with the Hutts, the Republic's Torrent Company attacked the Separatist base, successfully making it past the droid defenses. This had been part of the Confederate plan, however, and, now that the droid forces had played their role, Ventress sent 4-A7 to meet with the Republic. Pretending to be the monastery's caretaker droid, he approached the Republic forces and greeted their Jedi General, Anakin Skywalker, claiming that he was liberated from the Droid Army and telling Skywalker that Rotta was in the monastery's dungeons. Warning the Jedi Knight that this prison level was dangerous, 4-A7 claimed to think Skywalker's Padawan, Jedi Commander Ahsoka Tano, was a servant girl. She responded by activating her lightsaber, which startled 4-A7, and stating she was a Jedi.
- "Hey! You're that caretaker droid. I wondered what happened to you."
"Oh, young one. I mean, soon to be Jedi Knight. I had to get away from that terrible…"
- ―Ahsoka Tano reunites with 4-A7
4-A7's part in the Separatist plot was to frame the Jedi Order in the kidnapping and murder of Rotta. After the Jedi rescued the Huttlet, he secretly recorded Skywalker and Tano putting the screaming infant into a backpack, including when the former remarked that he hated Hutts. 4-A7 also used editing software to help make it seem like Skywalker was responsible for the kidnapping. He then stood by Ventress when she spoke with Dooku via hologram, and the recording, which had also been edited by her and 4-A7 to make it seem like Rotta was being abused, was sent to the count. On the Outer Rim desert world of Tatooine, Dooku presented this footage to Jabba and used it to claim the Jedi were the kidnappers.
Intending to take Rotta back, another detachment of the Droid Army arrived at the monastery, but Skywalker, Tano, Rotta, and Skywalker's astromech droid R2-D2 escaped and fled to a landing platform that had a starship. During this time, 4-A7 and several B1 battle droids were also planning on boarding this ship, a G9 Rigger-class light freighter named the Twilight that was kept fueled and flight ready by crime lord Ziro Desilijic Tiure, who Dooku had allied with to help kidnap Rotta. The two Jedi had arrived just before 4-A7 and the droids could leave, but, when Tano spotted him, she continued to assume he was a caretaker droid, noting that she had wondered what had happened to him. Although he had been surprised to hear her voice again, 4-A7 initially tried to continue his caretaker act, but she discovered his true loyalties when Separatist battle droids walked into view, one of which reported that everything was aboard, meaning they could leave.
In an attempt to stop Rotta's rescue, 4-A7 ordered the combat droids to shoot her, but he tried to flee up the ship's ramp. However, the three B1s were destroyed by Tano, and she soon pointed her lightsaber directly at him. 4-A7 demanded that she not kill him, but Tano quickly decapitated the protocol droid. Repeating his last words, 4-A7's head fell down the ship's ramp and landed in front of Skywalker. Tano, Skywalker, R2, and Rotta then boarded the light freighter, with the astromech knocking 4-A7's head out of his way, causing it to utter a final groan. Eventually, they managed to return the young Huttlet to his father, and, after learning the Jedi were not behind the kidnapping, Jabba allowed the Republic to travel through his territories.
- "Good guy or bad guy, Master?"
- ―Unable to tell based on appearance, Ahsoka Tano asks Anakin Skywalker whether 4-A7 is an ally or foe
An RA-7 protocol droid from the early Clone Wars, 4-A7 had a gray body with the plating of a 3PO-series protocol unit, stood 1.7 meters tall, and was a third class droid unit. He was also programmed as a spy and had the RA-7's distinctive insectoid head, which resembled the head of the insectoid Verpine species. Like other RA-7 units, 4-A7's head had a communications antenna, a logic housing, projecting jaw, a magnetic sensor that let him "see" magnetic field changes, a vocabulator that had a sounding box and allowed him to speak a number of dialects and languages despite its cheap components, and advanced yet sensitive audio sensors. Able to see across a very wide band and operate in almost complete darkness thanks to his broadband photoreceptors, 4-A7's droid eyes had antiglare coating and were insect-like, large, and bulbous. These photoreceptors were among the more impressive parts of the RA-7 series.
While he was loyal to the Separatists, 4-A7's appearance did not directly convey this, making Tano question if he was an adversary or ally when they first met. 4-A7 had the main power socket, olfactory sensor, energy transducers, and wrist linkage also seen on the 3PO protocol line. Also like the 3PO line, 4-A7's reinforced foot shells could be particularly prone to wear and tear. He was also equipped with a cervical servomotor, elbow joints, reinforced knee joints, an internal limb actuator, auxiliary power cells, servomotors on his arms, intersystem connection wires, intermotor actuating couplings at his knees, and a communications module that contained comlink technology and a language databank, although it was much smaller than those used by Cybot Galactica, which was the company that produced the 3PO unit. Similarly, because he was part of the RA-7 line, 4-A7's droid brain was a generation behind the module used in the 3PO unit. While 3PO units were also better at copying and understanding the fine nuances of a sentient's behavior, 4-A7 could work in etiquette and protocol due to being an RA-7 droid. Ultimately, while 4-A7 was part of a reasonably attractive and moderately capable droid series, he could not match the 3PO unit's versatility and intelligence.
- "Don't you dare!"
- ―4-A7 demands Ahsoka Tano not kill him
As a loyal servant of the Separatist Alliance, 4-A7 followed the orders Ventress gave him and had no issue with lying to his enemies, pretending to be an innocent and humble caretaker droid. Speaking in a low voice, he said the Confederate battle droids were dreadful and that he was thankful to be free. During his act, 4-A7 showed respect towards Skywalker, calling him mighty and a friend. When the Jedi Knight asked where Rotta was, RA-7 was willing to answer and even warned him that the dungeons were dangerous. 4-A7 also claimed to confuse Tano for a servant girl and, after she ignited her lightsaber, offered one thousand apologies.
Having information that could incriminate the Republic in Rotta's kidnapping was a vital part of the Separatist plan on Teth, with Dooku even stopping Ventress from killing Skywalker and Tano, as he still needed the data. 4-A7 fulfilled this part of the plan by recording the Jedi with a holocam built into his head and using a suite of editing software. His fortunes later turned, however, as Tano found him outside the Twilight before he could flee. He was surprised to hear her voice again and, after calling her "young one" and correcting himself, attempted to keep up his caretaker masquerade. After his true loyalty was revealed, Tano accused him of treason, but 4-A7 raised his voice and showcased that he was willing to kill his enemies, as he told the B1 battle droids to open fire. This show of force was short-lived, however, as he then attempted to flee before being confronted by Tano. He showed defiance in his last moments, ordering Tano to not kill him, which his severed head repeatedly uttered as it fell.
Behind the scenesEdit
4-A7 first appeared in the 2008 animated film Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The character was voiced by James Arnold Taylor, who also voiced Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi in the film and TV series. The droid's designation was revealed in the film's closing credits. Even though 4-A7 did not appear in the TV series, his name was listed in the credits of The Clone Wars: Season One episode "Rising Malevolence."
Animation models used for the RA-7 series in various The Clone Wars episodes look very similar to 4-A7's model. For the Season Five episode "The Jedi Who Knew Too Much," 4-A7's animation model was updated to better match the RA-7 units seen in the first Star Wars film, Episode IV A New Hope, from 1977. This updated model was used for the droid R-A7 in "The Jedi Who Knew Too Much." R-A7's character illustration was done by Chris Glenn and is dated to November 2011 by the episode's concept art gallery on StarWars.com. According to this illustration, 4-A7's design was called "4A7 Droid asset" behind the scenes. Within the Star Wars Legends continuity, the character was identified as 4A-7. His first appearance was in the novelization of The Clone Wars film and its junior novelization, which were both released before the film.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars film (First appearance)
- (as 4A7)
- Star Wars: Build Your Own R2-D2 11 (Droid Directory: RA-7 Protocol Droids)
- (Indirect mention only)
Notes and referencesEdit