- "Da name of dis ship is Tantive V. It looksa exactly like da Tantive IV. Da ambassador beesa already long gone. Meesa job was to stall yousa. And it workeds, didn't it, Lord Vader?"
- ―Abso Bar Binks
The Tantive V was a CR90 corvette in the service of the Rebel Alliance during the Galactic Civil War. Just prior to the Battle of Yavin, the Tantive V acted as a decoy for the identical Rebel corvette Tantive IV, the consular vessel of Princess Leia Organa of Alderaan, which was carrying stolen technical data of the Galactic Empire's Death Star battlestation.
To buy time for Organa to escape with the Death Star plans, the Tantive V drew the pursuit of Darth Vader's Imperial Star Destroyer, the Devastator, away from the Tantive IV. Believing the Tantive V to be the princess's corvette, the Devastator captured and boarded the decoy vessel, only to find that it carried an unarmed crew of Gungans rather than the coveted Death Star plans. The Tantive V's ruse briefly allowed Organa to slip past Vader's grasp with the Death Star readouts.
The CR90 corvette named Tantive V was a Corellian Engineering Corporation blockade runner of the Rebel Alliance Fleet. The Tantive V, which resembled exactly its counterpart vessel, the Rebel corvette Tantive IV, measured 150 meters in length, was armed with turbolaser cannons, and was equipped with a drive system.
Captured by Darth Vader
- "Where are the stolen plans? I know they're on this ship!"
- ―Darth Vader
During the Galactic Civil War, the Tantive V participated in the Rebel Alliance's campaign to secure stolen technical readouts of the Galactic Empire's first Death Star battlestation. After the Rebels succeeded in capturing and transmitting the Death Star data to Princess Leia Organa aboard the Alderaanian consular ship Tantive IV, Organa began racing home to the planet Alderaan to finalize the safe acquisition of the stolen data. However, the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Devastator, commanded by the Dark Lord of the Sith Darth Vader, pursued the Rebel corvette in an effort to capture Organa and recover the stolen plans.
As an exact lookalike of Organa's Tantive IV, the Tantive V provided the perfect diversion to stall the Devastator as it gave chase. Crewed only by a group of unarmed Gungans, the Tantive V lured the Devastator in pursuit of itself and away from the Tantive IV, thus buying time for Vader's true target to temporarily slip away with the plans. Ignorant of the ruse, the Devastator captured the Tantive V via tractor beam and drew the neutralized vessel into its main docking bay, where a stormtrooper force, led by Vader himself, prepared to board the corvette.
Vader's stormtroopers covered each of the Tantive V's hatches and jury-rigged open the corvette's main hatch when the Rebel counterattack came. A hooded figure—in reality, the Gungan Abso Bar Binks, son of former Imperial Senator Jar Jar Binks, personally tasked with stalling Vader—tossed two small boomas into the Devastator from inside the Tantive V's breached hatch, creating an explosion and an effective smoke screen among the stormtroopers.
The perfect decoy
- "If yousa still wants da ambassador, she'sa not on dis ship. And neithers are da secret plans."
- ―Abso Bar Binks, to Darth Vader
In the ensuing confusion, Binks slipped through the hatchway into the Devastator and began to attack the distracted stormtroopers, who refrained from firing on the hooded figure in fear that it might be Organa herself, whom they hoped to capture rather than kill. Upon eventually learning the identity—and ineptitude—of the hooded attacker, Vader quickly ordered his stormtroopers to board the Tantive V and bring him the Death Star plans. However, the stormtroopers soon reported to Vader that the data they sought was nowhere to be found aboard the Tantive V, and all they had uncovered was the corvette's unarmed Gungan crew.
At that moment, Binks revealed the deception to Vader: The Tantive V had been a diversion all along, and he had single-handedly manufactured the opportunity that Organa and the Tantive IV needed to escape. The stormtroopers booted Binks back aboard the Tantive V, but Vader refrained from issuing the order to eliminate the Gungans, considering them too worthless on which to waste blasterfire.
The Devastator released the Tantive V back into space and continued pursuit of Organa. Despite the Tantive V's efforts, the Devastator caught up with and captured the Tantive IV an hour later over the planet Tatooine. However, Vader failed to recover the Death Star plans, eventually leading to the battlestation's destruction at the Battle of Yavin.
Commanders and crew
- "Lord Vader! We can't find them anywhere!"
"All we've found are unarmed Gungans."
- ―Darth Vader's stormtroopers failed to find the Death Star plans aboard the Tantive V
During the mission to delay Darth Vader's pursuit of Princess Leia Organa aboard the Tantive IV, the Tantive V was manned by a crew of unarmed Gungans, including Abso Bar Binks, the Rebel son of Jar Jar Binks. Binks and his fellow Gungans fooled the Devastator's crew into believing that the Tantive V carried the princess and the stolen Death Star plans.
Behind the scenes
The Tantive V appeared in the illustrated story Tantive IV, created by the artist known as Formalin and published in Tokyopop's October 2006 Star Wars Manga: Black trade paperback comic book. All stories from Star Wars Manga: Black were considered non-canon within the Star Wars Legends continuity.
- Tantive IV (First appearance)
Notes and references
- CR90 corvette. According to the story Tantive IV, the Tantive V is an identical decoy of Princess Leia Organa's Tantive IV, which the StarWars.com Databank identifies as a CR90 corvette. — Based on standard technical specifics for the
- Tantive IV
- The story Tantive IV tells of the Tantive V's involvement in the Rebel Alliance's acquisition of the Death Star plans. The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, p. 417 ("Operation Skyhook") identifies this mission as Operation Skyhook.
- The New Essential Chronology
- Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
- "We Need to Talk About Jar Jar" – Star Wars Insider 131