- "Your primary mission is to recover our people and any intel they gathered."
- ―Senator Bail Organa
The mission to investigate Geonosis, also referred to as the mission to Geonosis, was an operation undertaken in 2 BBY by the Partisan leader Saw Gerrera. Gerrera traveled to desert planet Geonosis in the hopes of determining what major construction project the Galactic Empire had previously posted in the Geonosis system. He and his team were drawn by a deflector shield generator into an underground labyrinth that was inhabited by Klik-Klak, the sole survivor of the Sterilization of Geonosis. Believing that Saw and his team posed a threat, Klik-Klak killed most of the team except Saw.
Senator Bail Organa and Commander Jun Sato later dispatched the Spectres and Captain Rex to Geonosis to find Saw and investigate the apparent disappearance of the Geonosian species. Rex, Kanan Jarrus, Ezra Bridger, and Chopper encountered Saw and helped capture Klik-Klak following a prolonged pursuit. Meanwhile, Sabine Wren and Garazeb Orrelios discovered a deflector core. Following a heated debate, Ezra and his rebel comrades convinced Saw to let Klik-Klak and the last Geonosian Queen egg stay behind.
The mission was complicated by the arrival of an Arquitens-class command cruiser commanded by Captain Brunson. After a brief dogfight with TIE bombers, the Ghost retreated into a large air shaft which led to the depths of Geonosis. The rebels and Saw joined forces to fight off Imperial Jumptroopers. While returning Klik-Klak and the Geonosian Queen's egg, the rebels and Saw discovered poison canisters which the Empire had used to exterminate the Geonosians. They then managed to escape the air shaft before Brunson's light cruiser could bury them with debris. The rebels brought news of the Geonosian genocide and a new deflector core to the rebellion.
Following the end of the Clone Wars, the Galactic Empire embarked on an ambitious project to construct a superweapon that later became known as the Death Star. The Empire dragooned several Geonosian weapons designers into assisting with the construction of the Death Star. When the Geonosians were unable to develop a working superlaser, the Imperial Director Orson Krennic enlisted the services of Galen Erso to complete the project. After the work crew had developed an operational hyperdrive, the Empire bombed and sterilized the planet Geonosis and its population in order to conceal the superweapon's secrecy.
In 2 BBY, the rebel operative Saw Gerrera and his Partisans were assigned by Rebel Command on a mission to investigate the apparent disappearance of the Geonosian species. Saw and his fellow Partisans traveled to Geonosis and reported an energy source before losing contact with Rebel Command. This energy source turned out to be a deflector shield generator that was operated by Klik-Klak, the sole Geonosian that survived the Imperial genocide. He inhabited an underground labyrinth near a large air shaft and was also the custodian of a Geonosian Queen's egg. Klik-Klak also controlled a force of battle droids that he had managed to reactivate.
Believing Saw and his team to be hostile, Klik-Klak attacked them and wiped out Saw's team with the exception of Saw himself. Desperate, Rebel Command solicited Senator Bail Organa and Commander Jun Sato's help in sending the Spectres and Rex to Geonosis to find Saw's team and to recover the data he had discovered. The Spectres were led by Phoenix Leader Hera Syndulla and were part of a rebel cell called the Phoenix Cell. Hera's crew had previously traveled to Geonosis and been involved in a skirmish with Imperial forces at an Imperial construction module.
Relics of the Clone Wars
Despite a sand storm, the Spectres' ship Ghost managed to land on Geonosis near the source of the energy reading. Under Hera's orders, Rex, Kanan Jarrus, Ezra Bridger, and Chopper ventured into a Geonosian structure which had been the last source of Saw's transmission. The rebels crept into a hole which led to an underground labyrinth. The rebels found abandoned rebel gear and resolved to find Saw at the urging of Rex, who was unwilling to let his former comrade die. After reaching a dead end, the rebels were cornered by several old Clone Wars-era B1-series battle droids and a droideka. A skirmish ensued and the droids were destroyed by a skirmish thrown by Saw. Kanan and Ezra destroyed the droideka with their lightsabers.
Saw told the rebels that he and his team had discovered an operational shield generator. His squad had been attacked and wiped out by a Geonosian. Believing that the Geonosian held the answers as to why the Empire wiped out the population of Geonosis, Saw convinced Kanan and Ezra's team to help him find the Geonosian. After the rebels and Saw reached a large air shaft which led to the surface, Kanan was able to re-establish contact with the Ghost. Kanan warned Hera that there were still operational battle droids on Geonosis.
Meanwhile, Hera had dispatched the other rebels Sabine Wren and Garazeb Orrelios to explore the source of the energy reading; which turned out to be an operational shield generator. Under Hera's orders, Sabine and Zeb began extracting the deflector core. Before they could return to the Ghost, the two rebels discovered that the generator was surrounded by several deactivated droidekas. After receiving Hera's warnings, Sabine and Zeb decided to bring the deflector core back to the Ghost.
The lone Geonosian
After Chopper shone a searchlight on the opposite side of the air shaft, the rebels and Saw discovered a hidden Geonosian. The Geonosian used a remote controller to activate the droidekas guarding the deflector shield generator before fleeing deeper into the labyrinth. Since they could not cross the shaft, Kanan used the Force to throw Ezra safely onto the other side. Chopper activated his rocket boosters and joined the pursuit. Kanan then used the Force to lower a bridge above so that Saw and Rex could also cross. After all the others had crossed, Kanan Force-leaped onto the other side.
Meanwhile, Sabine and Zeb found themselves under attack from the droidekas. Sabine managed to activate the deflector core and created a deflector shield which absorbed the droid's blaster bolts. Back at labyrinth, the Spectres and Saw managed to capture the lone Geonosian following a prolonged pursuit. Saw also managed to shoot the Geonosian's droid controller, which deactivated the droidekas attacking Sabine and Zeb. Saw then demanded that their Geonosian captive tell them what the Empire was building above Geonosis.
While Saw was aggressive in questioning the Geonosian captive, Ezra tried to convince him that they were not hostile. Ezra's kindness reached the Geonosian, who identified himself as Klik-Klak. Since Klik-Klak could not speak Galactic Basic Standard, he tried to communicate by drawing two circles on the ground. While Saw didn't understand the Geonosian's message, Ezra recalled that Chopper had picked up an energy reading earlier. While Ezra's team were willing to trust Klik-Klak, Saw harbored ill feelings towards the Geonosian species due to their support for the Separatists during the Clone Wars.
A restrained Klik-Klak led the rebels and Saw into his dwelling, which doubled as a workshop and generator for maintaining his battle droids. Inside, the rebels also found an operational transmitter which they used to reestablish contact with Hera and arrange a rendezvous at the central air shaft. Ezra learnt that Klik-Klak was the custodian of the last Geonosian Queen's egg. While Saw wanted to take Klik-Klak back and interrogate him, Ezra insisted that Klik-Klak belonged here with his people. As a compromise, Kanan managed to convince Saw to let them take Klik-Klak to Chopper Base for interrogation and then return him safely to Geonosis.
The Spectres' mission on Geonosis was complicated by the arrival on an Arquitens-class command cruiser commanded by Captain Brunson, whose ship was responding to a proximity alert triggered by the rebels' presence. Brunson deployed two recon TIE bombers which came into contact with the Ghost. By then, the rebels had safely stored away their deflector core and Zeb had returned to the ship after managing to connect Kanan and Hera's signals. Sabine and Zeb managed to use the Ghost's laser cannons to shoot down the Imperial bombers.
Hera managed to fly the Ghost into the air shaft with considerable difficulty and rendezvous with Kanan's team, Saw, and Klik-Klak. Once aboard, a disagreement broke out between the Spectres and Saw over the treatment of Klik-Klak. Saw wanted to leave immediately with Klik-Klak on the Phantom II. When he tortured Klik-Klak with an electro-transmitter, Ezra, Rex and the others objected to Saw's harsh methods. Desperate, Saw threatened to shoot the Geonosian queen's egg in order to obtain results. Rex and Ezra managed to reason with Saw by warning him that resorting to such violence would make little better than his Imperial opponents.
Saw and his rebel allies put their differences aside when Captain Brunson's light cruiser arrived over the central air shaft and blocked their escape. Brunson deployed a squad of Jumptroopers to board the Ghost. Ezra, Kanan, Rex, Zeb, Saw, and Sabine managed to repel the boarders following a brief battle. Sabine even used her jetpack to sneak up behind two Jumptroopers and kill them with grenades. The Ghost then descended into the depths of Geonosis.
Once at the bottom, the rebels and Saw discovered several poison canisters that the Empire had used during the Sterilization of Geonosis. Having discovered irrefutable evidence that the Empire had perpetrated genocide against the Geonosians, Saw freed Klik-Klak and allowed him to go deeper underground with the Geonosian queen egg. Despite his past animosity towards the Geonosians, Saw realized that they should have the same chance to rebuild as everyone else. After taking a few canisters as evidence, the rebels decided to flee Geonosis.
By that stage, Captain Brunson had ordered her crew to bury the rebels alive by collapsing the air shaft on top of them. The crew of the Ghost managed to blast their way out by firing proton torpedoes which set the Imperial light cruiser ablaze. They then managed to slip through the burning vessel. Captain Brunson survived the inferno but was embarrassed by the rebels' successful escape. However, the rebels dropped the poison canisters, losing their physical evidence of the Imperial genocide.
As a result of the mission to Geonosis, the Spectres and Saw Gerrera discovered that the Empire had perpetrated genocide against the Geonosians. Despite taking photos of the canisters, Senator Organa informed them that these images would not be sufficient enough to sway the Imperial Senate against the Empire. However, he reassured them that it would convince more worlds to join the rebellion. Despite this setback, Commander Sato reassured the Spectres that their mission was a success because they had rescued Saw and obtained a deflector core. In addition, the crew of the Ghost also helped ensure the survival of the Geonosian species by helping Klik-Klak to escape with the Geonosian queen's egg into the depths of Geonosis. Despite their partnership with Saw, the Spectres remained uncomfortable with Saw's methods.
Behind the scenes
The mission to Geonosis was first mentioned in the 2016 reference book Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide. It later became the subject of the Star Wars Rebels double episode "Ghosts of Geonosis," which premiered on Disney XD on January 7, 2017.
- Star Wars Rebels – "Ghosts of Geonosis" (First appearance)
- Star Wars Rebels – "In the Name of the Rebellion" (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide (First mentioned)
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 19 (Databank A-Z: GA-97–Geonosis)
- Star Wars: The Rebel Files (First identified as mission to Geonosis)
- Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game – Saw's Renegades Expansion Pack (Card: ) (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 57 (Weapons & Uniforms: Chopper Base–Atollon)
- "Imperial Troops" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
Notes and references
- Star Wars Rebels – "Ghosts of Geonosis"
- "Final Round"—Star Wars Rebels Magazine 34
- Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow
- Star Wars Rebels – "Warhead"
- Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
- Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide establishes that the mission to investigate Geonosis, seen in "Ghosts of Geonosis," occurred 2 years before the events of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas places the events of Rogue One in 0 BBY. Therefore the mission to Geonosis took place in 2 BBY.
- Star Wars Propaganda: A History of Persuasive Art in the Galaxy