- "Pellaeon is completely loyal."
"I agree. But his loyalty is to the Empire, not you."
- ―Grand Admirals Balanhai Savit and Thrawn
Gilad Pellaeon was a male individual who served as a captain in the naval forces of the Galactic Empire, commanding the Imperial Star Destroyer Harbinger as part of Grand Admiral Balanhai Savit's Third Fleet. When Savit was exposed as a traitor who was stealing components from Project Stardust, Pellaeon sided with Grand Admiral Thrawn and Commodore Karyn Faro, and helped them arrest his superior.
After Savit was relieved of his duty, Pellaeon and the Harbinger were reassigned to assist Thrawn's Seventh Fleet. Together with Thrawn, Pellaeon participated in the Imperial blockade of the planet Lothal until it was liberated by the rebel Spectres and their allies shortly before the Battle of Yavin. During the liberation, all Imperial starships present were destroyed by flocks of the space-faring purrgil, and Pellaeon's communication with the Grand Admiral was quickly cut off.
Serving the Third Fleet
- "This is Captain Gilad Pellaeon, commanding the ISD Harbinger. I've reviewed the data sent by the Chimaera, and have concluded that the evidence is sufficient to justify an official inquiry. Accordingly, I am placing the Harbinger under the authority of Commodore Faro and calling on Grand Admiral Savit to surrender his command. I also call on Captains Lochry and Rasdel to join me—"
- ―Captain Pellaeon turns against Grand Admiral Savit
During the reign of the Galactic Empire, Gilad Pellaeon was an Imperial officer who held the rank of captain during his deployment with the Imperial Navy. He served as the commanding officer of the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Harbinger in Grand Admiral Balanhai Savit's Third Fleet, though the Grand Admiral was not satisfied with the degree of Pellaeon's personal loyalty to him. During the fleet's anti-piracy campaign in the Esaga sector, Savit ordered Pellaeon and the latter's first officer to meet him to discuss a pirate-hunting mission. However, unbeknownst to Pellaeon, the Grand Admiral himself had hired the pirates in order to steal components from Project Stardust, which saw the construction of the Death Star superweapon.
Not long after, Grand Admiral Thrawn of the Seventh Fleet, who aimed to remove Savit from command by exposing his treachery, asked Savit to turn over the captive Assistant Director Brierly Ronan to him and sent coordinates for a rendezvous. Savit traveled to the prearranged star system with four Star Destroyers, including Pellaeon's Harbinger, and met with Thrawn's flagship, the Star Destroyer Chimaera, commanded by Commodore Karyn Faro. Suspecting an ambush, Savit sent the Harbinger to sweep a nearby space station, which was actually used by Savit's pirates, as a precaution in order to keep Pellaeon away from a possible conflict. Faro subsequently transmitted evidence of Savit's complicity to the Third Fleet personnel.
Meanwhile, Savit's three remaining Star Destroyers engaged in a skirmish against the Chimaera. During the battle, Pellaeon reviewed the evidence against Savit and concluded that an official inquiry against the Grand Admiral was justified. Pellaeon then called for Savit to surrender his command, as well as calling on fellow Captains Lochry and Rasdel to join him. Pellaeon further placed the Harbinger under the command of Faro. Following Savit's arrest, Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin reassigned Pellaeon and the Harbinger to the Seventh Fleet, believing that he might prove useful to Thrawn's ongoing struggle against the Lothalite insurgents.
Imperial blockade of Lothal
- "Get Captain Pellaeon."
"Sir, they came out of hyperspace! I've never seen…"
- ―Grand Admiral Thrawn and Pellaeon encounter the purrgil over Lothal
In 0 BBY, prior to the Battle of Yavin, Pellaeon took part in the Empire's orbital blockade around the planet Lothal as part of Thrawn's fleet. However, the blockade failed to stop band of rebels, led by Jedi Padawan Ezra Bridger of the Spectres, from launching an attack that liberated the planet from its Imperial occupation.
While Thrawn was dealing with the rebels on the planet surface, he learned that the entire blockade was destroyed by several objects not identifiable to the Imperials. The Grand Admiral subsequently contacted Pellaeon to inquire about the situation, and the captain reported that their attackers had come out of hyperspace, before their communication was quickly severed. Moments later, Thrawn discovered that the Imperial vessels were destroyed by flocks of purrgil—massive, whale-like creatures that were naturally capable of traveling through hyperspace—as part of Bridger's attack. Having lost the liberated planet to the rebels, the Empire never again returned to Lothal.
Personality and traits
- "Captain Pellaeon's not a blind follower, and Savit knows it."
- ―Commodore Karyn Faro
Gilad Pellaeon was a competent officer whose loyalty lay with the Empire itself, instead of blindly following any individual commander. After receiving evidence suggesting his commanding officer, Grand Admiral Savit, had committed treason, Pellaeon turned against Savit and demanded his surrender.
During the Liberation of Lothal, Captain Pellaeon was astonished upon witnessing the purrgil swarm coming out of hyperspace and attacking the blockade of Imperial starships over the planet. Pellaeon spoke Basic.
Behind the scenes
Reintroduction into Star Wars canon
- "I just wanted to mention the name so it gets in there, so it's something people can use. And sometimes that's what I can do for things that come out of Legends. I could create just another Captain with some name there or I could put someone like Pellaeon in play. And then maybe he gets picked up in comics or novels, I don't know. But I think that would be kind of fun to do, and it's a way to get that idea rolling."
- ―Dave Filoni, on the inclusion of Pellaeon in Star Wars Rebels
Gilad Pellaeon was reintroduced into Star Wars canon in the Star Wars Rebels animated series finale, "Family Reunion – and Farewell," which was written by executive producer Dave Filoni and his team, and first aired on March 5, 2018. The character was voiced by Jim Cummings, who was also the voice of Hondo Ohnaka in the series.
Filoni described bringing back Star Wars Legends characters like Pellaeon into canon as being one of his favorite parts of the job. He said that bringing in Pellaeon serves as an opportunity for other authors to explore new stories for the character in canon, which creating a new character with a new name would not necessarily allow for. Filoni also indicated that, in his opinion, Pellaeon survived the events of the Star Wars Rebels finale and expressed hope that other authors would continue the character's story.
Although author Timothy Zahn, the character's original creator in Star Wars Legends, was not informed of Pellaeon's inclusion in Star Wars Rebels beforehand, he later used the character in his 2019 novel Thrawn: Treason, which reintroduced the character's first name, "Gilad," into canon.
Stories in Star Wars Legends
- "Pellaeon, by the way, was named after Pelleas, an idealistic young knight in the King Arthur mythos."
- ―Timothy Zahn
The character of Gilad Pellaeon originally appeared in the 1991 Star Wars Legends novel, Heir to the Empire, the first volume in The Thrawn Trilogy by author Timothy Zahn. Zahn named the character after Pelleas, a knight from the King Arthur legend, while the 1995 reference book The Essential Guide to Characters, written by Andy Mangels, introduced his first name, "Gilad."
In these stories, Captain Pellaeon was depicted as an elderly Human with a bushy mustache, and he was a prominent military officer who served as Grand Admiral Thrawn's right-hand man during the latter's campaign against the New Republic following the Battle of Endor. Pellaeon also played a significant role in numerous other Legends stories, acting as the founding leader of the Imperial Remnant and signing a peace treaty with the New Republic that ended the Galactic Civil War. Through his many appearances over two decades, Pellaeon became a fan-favorite Legends character.
- Thrawn: Treason (First identified as Gilad, simultaneous with Thrawn: Treason audiobook)
- Thrawn: Treason audiobook
- Star Wars Rebels – "Family Reunion – and Farewell" (First appearance) (Voice only)
- "Thrawn: A Villain's Purpose" – Star Wars Insider 182
- Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Four
- "Thrawn: A Villain's Purpose" – Star Wars Insider Special Edition 2022
Notes and references
- Thrawn: Treason
- Star Wars Rebels – "Family Reunion – and Farewell"
- Star Wars: Battles that Changed the Galaxy establishes that the Liberation of Lothal takes place nineteen years after the formation of the Galactic Empire and occurs prior the Battle of Yavin, which corresponds to the year 0 BBY, according to Star Wars: Galactic Atlas.
- Heir to the Empire: The 20th Anniversary Edition
- Heir to the Empire
- The Essential Reader's Companion
- The Essential Guide to Characters
- The New Essential Guide to Characters
- Specter of the Past
- Vision of the Future
- The character of Gilad Pellaeon appeared in the 2012 comic book Crimson Empire III: Empire Lost 6, more than twenty years after his debut in the 1991 novel, Heir to the Empire.