- "I will not be undermined by creatures bred in some laboratory!"
- ―Pong Krell
Pong Krell, a Force-sensitive Besalisk male, was a Jedi Master during the last years of the Galactic Republic. During the Clone Wars, he held the rank of Jedi General in the Grand Army of the Republic. Although the clone troopers under his command sustained the highest casualty rates, Krell was recognized as a successful general due to his victories on the battlefield. In addition to his reputation as a general, he was also noted for his ferocity in personal combat. The advantage of his four-armed physiology allowed him to use a unique form of Jar'Kai—wielding two double-bladed lightsabers at the same time. However, as the war carried on, Krell began to see visions of a new order rising to power in place of both the Republic and the Jedi Order. Driven by self-preservation, he secretly embraced the dark side of the Force and began undermining the Republic Military's war effort in hopes of gaining Count Dooku's attention, to ultimately become his apprentice preceding the fall of the Republic.
During the Battle of Umbara, Krell temporarily replaced Anakin Skywalker as the commanding officer of the 501st Legion. When his soldiers discovered their general's secret allegiance to Dooku, the clones mutinied against Krell's command and moved to arrest him for treason. Despite killing multiple troopers while attempting to escape, the fallen Jedi was captured and imprisoned by his men. Although his subordinate, Clone Captain CT-7567, decided to execute him, it was ultimately Krell's strongest supporter, trooper "Dogma," on questioning Krell as to why he was performing these actions, who stole a blaster from Fives' holster, and killed him for betraying the Republic.
- "Time and rest are luxuries the Republic can't afford."
- ―Pong Krell
As the Jedi were called into service by the Galactic Republic, Krell joined the war as a General in the newly formed Grand Army of the Republic. Despite high casualties of clone troopers under his command, Krell achieved many victories.
As the war progressed, Krell became seduced by the dark side of the Force. He then received a premonition about the future; the Jedi were all but extinct, the Republic fell, and a New Order rose in its place. This caused Krell to betray both the Republic and Jedi Order. Outwardly, he maintained his Jedi facade, but secretly he had renounced the Jedi way. He acted as a double agent to sabotage the Republic's efforts. Krell sought to become the new apprentice of Sith Lord and Separatist leader Count Dooku and gain a position of power in the New Order.
Battle of UmbaraEdit
In 20 BBY, Krell, along with Jedi Generals Obi-Wan Kenobi, Saesee Tiin, and Anakin Skywalker were sent by the Jedi High Council to retake Umbara back from its Confederate-aligned Umbaran Militia. Krell then provided an air strike to Skywalker's forces. Krell then met up with Skywalker, and told that he was being recalled to Coruscant at the request of both Palpatine and the Jedi Council whilst Krell was given command of the 501st Legion.
Taking the airbaseEdit
- Pong Krell: "What is your plan?"
- CT-7567: "I've dispatched two men on a stealth incursion into the airbase. They've been ordered to co-opt starfighters and use them against the tanks."
- Krell: "You what?! You put this entire assault on your hope that two clones can do what your entire group could not?!"
- CT-7567: "Sir, the rocket launchers don't work on these tanks. It would be easier to slip by undetected while the rest of us keep the tanks occupied."
- Krell: "Captain, you will launch a full forward strike immediately, or you will be relieved of duty."
- ―Pong Krell and CT-7567[src]
Krell then led the 501st to the outskirts of the capital. Krell, against Captain Rex's concerns, decided to attack the city by going along the main road instead of flanking the capital. However, Rex and his troopers were forced to retreat away from the capital much to Krell's chagrin. Krell and his forces then held their ground against the militia and their Zenuas 33 Umbaran starfighters. Krell was then contacted by Kenobi, who told them that an airbase was re-supplying the capital. Krell and the 501st were tasked to take the airbase.
As the 501st approached the outskirts of the airbase, Krell sent Rex and the battalion through a ravine to take the airfield. Despite Rex's and his troopers' objections, they went into the ravine. However, they came under heavy attack by the Militia's impeding assault tanks and mobile heavy cannons. Krell refused to let Rex and the battalion retreat or to send them reinforcements. After the clones took the airbase, despite heavy casualties, Krell objected to allowing the clones use stolen enemy Umbaran ships to attack a Separatist supply ship. Instead, he ordered the troopers to march directly into range of enemy missile fire. Rather than face certain death by following orders, several troopers secretly used the stolen ships anyway and successfully destroyed the supply ships, supporting Obi Wan Kenobi's attack on the Umbaran capital. Krell still had the soldiers who disobeyed orders locked in the brig. He later ordered Jesse and Fives executed.
- "It's treason then."
- ―Pong Krell, preparing to fight his own clone troopers
The troopers refuse to go through with the execution. Krell told the clones that enemy soldiers had stolen Republic weapons and armor and ordered them into battle. During the fight, the clones discovered that Krell had lied and had ordered the 212th and 501st, unbeknownst to both squadrons, to attack each other. Rex realized that Krell had intentionally orchestrated the deaths of countless clone troopers and organized the clones to arrest Krell. Krell dropped his Jedi facade and initially escaped arrest, killing many clones in the process and fleeing into the Umbaran forest. Rex and his men pursued, and eventually caught up with him.
Many of the clones attacking Krell were slain by the former Jedi Master. However, Tup eventually tricked him into being captured by a vixus, and then managed to stun and arrest Krell, putting him in a holding cell in the airbase. After Krell admitted to his treachery, and with the enemy advancing towards to the airbase, Rex decided to execute Krell before he could be freed by the approaching Umbarans. While waiting for Rex to shoot him, Krell expressed motivations to join the Sith and become Count Dooku's apprentice. He also played mind games with Rex, resulting in Rex's steady hand becoming shaky as Rex questioned his decision. However, Dogma seized Fives' blaster and shot Krell dead before Rex could make a decision. Dogma insisted he had to shoot Krell because, "he betrayed us". Afterwards, Dogma himself was taken into Republic custody for killing an officer, but as he was led away, Rex gave him a reassuring nod to let him know that he did the right thing.
- "This is by far the greatest breach of trust the Jedi have seen since Count Dooku himself betrayed us. Even General Krell's deception did less damage. Vos isn't just a Jedi, he's a Jedi Master with unique skills. And he is a Jedi Master in wartime who has worked side by side with Dooku. This is going to have massive repercussions."
- ―Mace Windu comparing Quinlan Vos' fall to the dark side with Pong Krell's
Eventually, the Jedi became aware of Krell's deception. After Quinlan Vos' fall to the dark side of the Force while on a mission to assassinate Dooku, most of the Council supported the idea of executing Vos, with Mace Windu citing that Vos was a Jedi Master with unique skills and that even Krell's deception did less damage.
Powers and abilitiesEdit
Pong Krell was a powerful Force-user. His Besalisk anatomy allowed him to wield two double-bladed lightsabers at the same time. Krell's weapons were unique, as they could fold in the middle, making them easier to carry. He wielded his lightsabers with deadly precision, spinning them like buzz saws to have devastating effect, and he was capable of killing many clone troopers with ease. He could also deflect an innumerable amount of blaster bolts with ease.
Krell was also skilled in the Force, as shown when he used all four arms to force push the clones trying to arrest him in all directions. Krell was also skilled in force jump, as shown when he used it to dispatch two banshees, and later used the ability to escape the tower of the Umbaran airbase. Aside from mocking the clone troopers, he also used this mocking ability to confuse them by making his voice echo in every direction. He was also able to sense emotions through the Force, such as Captain Rex's fear and uncertainty. Krell also had the ability to foresee future events. This ability was paramount to his conversion to the dark side, for he prophesied the near destruction of the Jedi, the fall of the Republic, and the rise of an Empire.
Although he was undermined by his own overconfidence and the ingenuity of trooper Tup, Krell easily massacred scores of clones with a combination of deadly lightsaber techniques and powerful force skills. He was highly skilled in unarmed combat, which he displayed while fighting clones with his bare hands. Despite his size, Krell proved himself to be an agile fighter as well.
- Star Wars: Galactic Defense
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Darkness on Umbara" (First appearance)
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The General"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Plan of Dissent"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Carnage of Krell"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Sabotage" (Mentioned only)
- Dark Disciple (Mentioned only)
- Dark Disciple audiobook (Mentioned only)
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ Ultimate Star Wars
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Carnage of Krell"
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Darkness on Umbara"
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The General"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Plan of Dissent"
- ↑ Dark Disciple