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"Did you hear Kaz call me buddy? That is a term of endearment in many cultures!"
―Neeku Vozo, to Kel[src]

Neeku Vozo was a Kadas'sa'Nikto male mechanic who served as a member of Team Fireball on the Colossus. Neeku befriended the undercover Resistance spy Kazuda Xiono during his mission on the Colossus to investigate First Order influence.

Biography

Origins

"I once had a pet named Lucky that reminded me of home…and then it died…and then I ate it! And it was supremely delicious!"
―Neeku Vozo[src]

Neeku Vozo came from a long line of bantha herders and was a sort of prodigy amongst his tribe.[4] At some point, Vozo had a pet named Lucky, who reminded him of his home. Lucky eventually died, and Vozo would subsequently eat it.[5]

During the New Republic era, Neeku Vozo had found work as a mechanic at the former New Republic starfighter pilot Jarek Yeager's repair shop on the Colossus, a super tanker fuel depot on the Outer Rim ocean world of Castilon. He worked alongside the female human Tamara Ryvora and the astromech droid R1-J5 "Bucket."[2]

Enter Kazuda Xiono

In 34 ABY,[6] Neeku overheard two visitors: the Resistance pilot Poe Dameron and the former New Republic starfighter pilot–turned Resistance spy Kazuda Xiono. Neeku was familiar with Dameron and greeted him, telling him that it was a long time since they had met. Misunderstanding Xiono's remark about his childhood dream of becoming the best starfighter pilot in the galaxy, Neeku proclaimed to a crowd at Aunt Z's Tavern that Kaz was the "best starfighter pilot in the galaxy."[2]

After Kaz got caught in a brawl sparked by Grevel's rigged holodarts game, Kaz tried to correct his remark about being the best starfighter pilot in the galaxy. Taking things literally, Neeku took offense and thought that Kaz had been deceiving him. To make amends with Neeku, Kaz reluctantly agreed to prove he was the best starfighter pilot galaxy by racing with the elite Ace Squadron pilot Torra Doza, the daughter of Captain Imanuel Doza, who ran the Colossus.[2]

Neeku later accompanied Kaz to Yeager's repair shop in order to borrow Tam Ryvora's racer Fireball. Due to the ramshackle state of the Fireball, Yeager sent Neeku and Kaz to obtain spareparts from Flix and Orka's Office of Acquisitions. When Kaz asked Neeku for helped in procuring these parts, Neeku told him that the pilot had to pay for his own parts. When Neeku pleaded on Kaz's behalf, Orka agreed to give him secondhand parts in return for obtaining a gorg for lunch.[2]

The following day, Kaz took part in the race. Due to the ramshackle state of the Fireball, the ship sunk into the sea after the engines exploded. After Kaz was rescued from the sea, Neeku expressed relief that Kaz had survived without a scratch and remarked that he was an exceptional pilot. Yeager, who was a friend of Poe and was aware that Kaz was a Resistance spy, agreed to employ Kaz as a mechanic so that he could maintain a cover on the Colossus. Kaz was also accompanied by Poe's BB-series astromech droid BB-8, who was tasked with minding the young spy.[2]

Kaz's friend

While Yeager tolerated Kaz's presence and Tam and Bucket resented the newcomer, Neeku remained on friendly terms with Kaz. Neeku took an interest in Kaz's lucky trophy. In return, Neeku told Kaz the tragic story of his former pet Lucky. Due to Kaz's lack of prior mechanical expertise, Yeager tasked Neeku with supervising Kaz's repairs on the Neimoidian visitor Hallion Nark's starship.[5]

Unknown to Neeku and the others, Nark was a spy in the service of the pirate Kragan Gorr and his Warbird gang. When the Warbirds attacked the Colossus under the cover of a triple dark storm, Neeku and the rest of Team Fireball took shelter. Kaz used Yeager's machines to jam the pirates' communications, forcing them to retreat.[5]

When Kaz struggled to repair an engine, Neeku remained supportive and counselled him that an engine was not sentient. After the racer and troublemaker Jace Rucklin and his associates befriended Kaz, Neeku warned Kaz to be careful with the youths, describing them as "lazy, always laughing, pulling pranks on others, and not focusing on their work."[7]

Neeku's warnings was proven right when Jace took advantage of a visit to Yeager's office to steal a bottle of volatile hyperfuel. After the bottle was discovered missing, Neeku warned Kaz that hyperfuel was highly unstable and caused terminal blowouts. Realizing that Rucklin had stolen the hyperfuel, Kaz managed to stop Rucklin but destroyed racer in the process.[7]

Visiting Doza Tower

After testing comlinks during a blackout, Neeku and his colleagues Kaz and Tam went to Aunt Z's Tavern for a meal of Cirilian Sour Pastes. After enduring a second black out, the trio encountered the Ace leader Hype Fazon, who had a celebrity status at the Colossus. While Neeku and Kaz were friendly towards Hype, Tam was hostile towards the Ace leader since she was bitter that her former friend Hype had abandoned her during her racing days.[8]

Shortly later, a First Order delegation led by Major Elrik Vonreg visited the Colossus, intending to negotiate the supply of fuel with Captain Imanuel Doza. Knowing of Kaz's interest in the First Order, Neeku tried to make conversation with the First Order stormtroopers but they brushed him aside. As a precaution, Kaz confiscated the other half of the comlink.[8]

Seeking to win hearts and minds, Hype invited Neeku and his friends to the High Tower, an offer which Neeku and Kaz accepted. Tam reluctantly came along. While Neeku and Tam socialized with Hype, Kaz took the opportunity to spy on Captain Doza's meeting with Major Vonreg. Kaz was later forced to flee when stormtroopers spotted him.[8]

While having drinks with Tam at Aunt Z's Tavern, Neeku, Tam, and the other patrons saw navigating over the ledge to flee the stormtroopers. Neeku joined the other patrons in cheering for Kaz while Tam was worried for the young mechanic. Kaz managed to escape into a blast door. After returning to Yeager's repairs, Kaz handed Neeku back his comlink. Neeku was happy to be reunited with his comlink but Kaz warned him not to use it when they were in the same room.[8]

Orphans of Tehar

Neeku helped Tam and Kaz to install an acceleration compensator. After Kaz accidentally damaged the compensator, Neeku took pity on Kaz and paid for his glass of water at Aunt Z's Tavern. When Kaz heard about a bounty on two missing children and decided to collect the bounty in order to purchase a new compensator, Neeku told Kaz that he was not a bounty hunter. However, Kaz convinced Neeku that he could purchase a new compensator for Tam and help the children; making it a win-win situation.[9]

Neeku along with Kaz and BB-8 soon encountered the children Kel and Eila in the Colossus marketplace. Kaz tried to tell the children he was here to help them but they distrusted him and ran away. Neeku then told Kaz he had friends who could help them find the children. Neeku led Kaz and BB-8 to the engineering deck, which was the domain of the Chelidae or "Shell folk." The Chelidae agreed to help.[9]

Shortly later, Neeku along with Kaz and BB-8 were summoned by the security droid 4D-M1N for a meeting with Captain Doza at Doza Tower. Doza queried about Kaz's interest in the children before dismissing them. Later, Neeku and Kaz received word from the Chelidae leader that his people had found Kel and Eila. Meeting the children, Neeku, Kaz, and BB-8 learnt that the children were the survivors of a First Order massacre on Tehar perpetrated by Kylo Ren and that the First Order was hunting them down to eliminate all survivors of the massacre.[9]

Since Eila was hurt in the leg, Neeku accompanied Kel and Kaz to the marketplace to find a herb. However, First Order forces led by Commander Pyre arrived to hunt down the children, having been tipped off by Captain Doza. After escaping back to the engineering deck, Kaz came up with a plan which involved tricking the First Order into thinking that Kel and Eila had jumped to deaths below. Kaz's plan worked and the children were able to find refuge with the Chelidae. As a bonus, Kaz managed to placate Tam by obtaining an acceleration compensator from the Chelidae.[9]

Kaz's salvage run

Neeku was asleep when Kaz departed with Yeager on an early morning "salvage run." Unknown to Neeku this salvage run turned out to be a starfighter training exercise with Kaz's mentor Dameron. While flying, the two Resistance pilots investigated a distress transmission in sector six of the Castilon system. They rescued a crew member named Synara San, who turned out to be a member of Kragan Gorr's Warbird gang.[10]

Later, Neeku was working in Yeager's repair station went BB-8 embarked on a wild chase searching for Kaz, who had been working on a targeting computer all that time.[11]

The second pirate raid

"You can go back to talking, Neeku."
"Oh, you will not believe the siege we withstood in the garage. A pirate knocked on our door. I am not sure if he knew we were here, but Bucket and I came up with a most clever ruse. We heroically hid in the supply closet and didn't say a word. Oh, it wasn't always easy, but—"
"Actually, stop talking, Neeku."
―Jarek Yeager and Neeku Vozo[src]

Neeku and his fellow Team Fireball mechanics received a contract from Captain Doza to repair the station's air defense system's tracking computer. While working on the computer, Vozo discovered that they needed a new CoMar Tri-Tracker chip, an extremely rare military component. Since Neeku had a reputation as a "chatterbox", Yeager ordered him to work in the garage and to delay his lunch break.[12]

After Kaz and Tam returned with a tracker chip provided by Synara San, Yeager allowed Vozo to take a break but issued orders to keep their operation secret. Vozo took it literally and muffled his mouth. Neeku muffling his mouth annoyed Kaz and Tam, who had trouble understanding his words. Later, Synara San visited to give Xiono some connector couplings. In truth, she wanted to confirm that the platform's air defense system was down.[12]

After Tam returned from her lunchbreak, Kaz asked Neeku about the chances of a pirate raid happening. Before Neeku could answer, Kragan Gorr and his pirates attacked the Colossus. During the attack, Neeku and Bucket hid inside the supply closet. Following the attack, Neeku recounted his and Bucket's ordeal to an exhausted Yeager, who had just returned from installing the tracking computer into the air defense system.[12]

The Platform Classic

Neeku and his fellow crew were working on the Fireball racer when Tam informed about the upcoming Platform Classic race. When Kaz remarked that he heard a rumor that would make the Platform Classic the "greatest race" in the galaxy, Neeku thought that Kaz was joking. Shortly later, Neeku accompanied Yeager and the rest of Team Fireball to a meeting with Captain Doza, who wanted Yeager to compete in the Platform Classic against galactic racing champion Marcus Speedstar, Yeager's estranged younger brother.[13]

While Neeku and the other members of Team Fireball were delighted by the presence of Marcus Speedstar at the Platform Classic, Yeager was still hostile towards Marcus for causing the deaths of his wife and daughter. After returning to the workshop, Neeku asked Yeager why his brother had a different surname. Yeager was annoyed that Neeku thought that Speedstar was a proper surname.[13]

When Speedstar visited Yeager's garage in an attempt to mend relations with his older brother, Neeku introduced Yeager's Esral'sa'Nikto Oplock and astromech droid R4-D12 to his teammates. When Oplock howled, Yeager reassured Kaz and Tam that this was a traditional Esral'sa'Nikto greeting.[13]

Later, Neeku accompanied Yeager and the rest of the team to Aunt Z's Tavern where Yeager attempted to force Speedstar to pull of the race. Speedstar refused because he wanted to pay back his debts to the Guavian Death Gang to secure the release of his friend Oplock. Yeager's ploy backfired when Aunt Z and her patrons began betting on the two brothers.[13]

While Yeager was preparing his racer for the race, Neeku asked Yeager why he had stopped speaking to his younger brother. Without disclosing the details of their fallout, Yeager told Neeku that Speedstar had not been there when he needed him.[13]

Neeku and the rest of Team Fireball watched the Platform Classic on a holoscreen. During the descent phase, Neeku remarked that he could not bear to look. During the race, Yeager and Speedstar reconciled after Yeager realized that Speedstar truly cared for his friend Oplock. Yeager then pulled out near the finish line, allowing Speedstar to win the race and claim the prize money to pay Oplock's ransom. Neeku and the rest of Team Fireball were present when Yeager and Speedstar parted company on amicable terms.[13]

Casual adventures

Neeku and his fellow Team Fireball members and Torra Doza later had a game of holodarts at Aunt Z's Tavern. Xiono missed all three shots in his round. Bucket managed to hit the bull's eye twice but the third dart struck Xiono in the backside.[14]

As reward for his hard work, Yeager treated Neeku for lunch and allowed him to buy anything that he wanted. Neeku decided to buy a gorg from Bolza Grool's stall in the Colossus marketplace. However, the gorg escaped and led Neeku on a wild chase through the market. Following the chase, Neeku changes his mind and decided to have bantha milk instead. Yeager remarked to BB-8 that Neeku could have gotten a droid instead.[15]

Neeku was present with Ryvora when Xiono took a test flight in the Fireball. Xiono managed to circle the Fireball with Torra Doza's Blue Ace. However, the ship's throttle broke, causing Xiono to descend rapidly into Yeager's hangar. Xiono managed to regain control of the ship and land it safely. However, the Fireball's landing gear and canopy soon fell apart.[16]

Personality and traits

Neeku Vozo was a male Kadas'sa'Nikto with black eyes and green skin. He interpreted everything very literally.[1] Neeku easily befriended people but his tendency to interpret things literally would often cause confusion and trouble. While Neeku was initially upset that Kaz was "not the best starfighter pilot in the galaxy", he forgave him after Kaz took part in a race with Torra Doza. Though Kaz lost and even crashed his ship, Neeku regarded Kaz as an exceptional pilot since he escaped uninjured.[2]

While the rest of Team Fireball initially resented or barely tolerated Kaz's presence, Neeku went out of his way to befriend Kaz despite the latter's lack of mechanical skills.[5] Neeku also recognized that the seemingly charismatic racer Jace Rucklin and his associates were idle and unscrupulous troublemakers. His warning was proven right when Rucklin took advantage of his friendship with Kaz to steal a bottle of volatile hyperfuel.[7]

Neeku was friendly and approachable. He often sought to help others but in the process annoyed them or made the situation worse. On one occasion, he tried to chat with First Order stormtroopers in order to solicit information on Kaz's behalf.[8] Neeku was also a kind-hearted individual and once treated the cash-strapped Kaz for a glass of water. As a discreet observer, Neeku told Kaz that he would not make a good bounty hunter due to the ethical implications of the job.[9]

Neeku's tendency to take things literally led him to muffle his speech when Yeager ordered him to maintain the secrecy of their tracking computer project.[12] On another occasion, Neeku thought that Marcus Speedstar's surname was a real name, not realizing that it was a nickname. Neeku held Speedstar in high regard due to reputation as a galactic racing champion.[13]

Skills and abilities

Neeku Vozo was a skilled mechanic who was familiar with repairing starships[5] and the dangers of hyperfuel.[7] Neeku was familiar with comlinks but annoyed Kaz by using it in the same room.[8] Besides speaking Galactic Basic, Neeku could also speak several languages including the Chelidae language[9] and the Nikto language Cracek.[13]

Behind the scenes

Neeku Vozo is a character created and developed for the Star Wars Resistance animated series. He is voiced by Josh Brener, who voiced Erskin Semaj in Star Wars Rebels.

Appearances

Sources

Notes and references

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