Star Wars Antiheroes We Love To Root For

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, an antihero is “a central character in a story, movie, or drama who lacks conventional heroic attributes.” These attributes include, but are not limited to, idealism, altruism, courage, and/or morality.

Often an antihero can simply be a good guy with a bad attitude — hence the “jerk with a heart of gold” trope that’s so prevalent in pop culture. The most important thing to remember about antiheroes, of course, is that they are not villains. So then where’s the line, and who exemplifies these traits?

Well, Star Wars is no stranger to antiheroes. From smugglers to bounty hunters, the galaxy far, far away has its fair share of lovable, morally ambiguous adventurers. Let’s take a look at some of the best of the not-quite-the-worst below.


Din Djarin

“This is the way.”

A mysterious stranger, a bounty hunter, and a Child of the Watch, Din Djarin™, or The Mandalorian, is not your typical leading man by any means. He’s antisocial and quick-tempered, a loner who kills or collects criminals for a Guild fee. But he’s also kind-hearted, caring deeply for Grogu as well as his other allies like Cara Dune™ and Bo-Katan Kryze™. He’s loyal to his people and uses his galactic credits for their betterment — or for armor that can help him fight for The Child’s future.

This titular character has become one of Star Wars‘ most beloved protagonists. He’s also beloved in world, with other heroes naturally gravitating toward his peaceful presence despite his constant attempts to work alone. So while he doesn’t fit the exact hero archetype, he’s undoubtedly the hero of the next generation of Star Wars stories.


Han Solo

“Never tell me the odds.”

Han Solo™ is introduced in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope™ as a selfish and arrogant smuggler. His character is apparently only motivated by money, and he takes every opportunity to mock Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi about their “hokey” ancient Jedi™ ways. Han doesn’t believe in friendship or the Force — he believes in a hearty payday and a light-speed escape before he has to risk his neck.

Of course, after meeting Princess Leia and accidentally joining the Rebellion, Han changes his way. He leaves before the final assault against the Death Star, but swoops in at the last minute in a daring deus ex machina move to prove he’s more than his gruff exterior.


Hondo Ohnaka

“Oh, the stories I could tell. Many of them true.”

Captain Hondo Ohnaka™ is a troublemaker. A liar. A pirate. This outlaw operates during Star Wars: The Clone Wars throughout the galaxy, grabbing glory and gold. For the right price, Hondo helps the Jedi. He might also help the villains if the prize is alluring enough. Hondo never lies about his intentions, though; he’s upfront about what he wants as well as the fact that he’ll do pretty much anything to get it.

Hondo shows a little more integrity in Star Wars: Rebels™. In his attempts to recruit young Jedi Ezra Bridger™, Hondo inadvertently assists the Rebellion in his first few appearances, but then actively commits to a dangerous mission in the Rebels finale. He explains in one of his most selfless monologues that he’s willing to do anything to help Ezra.


Lando Calrissian

“This deal is getting worse all the time.”

Lando Calrissian™ and Han Solo are old friends, and coincidentally pretty similar in their habits of double-crossing, swindling, and self-preservation. In Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back™, Lando provides sanctuary for our heroes in Cloud City™. This refuge actually becomes a prison cell for Han, who is slated to be frozen in carbonite™, and Luke, who must duel a Sith Lord™ before barely escaping with his life.

Wracked by guilt and wrestling with his hidden desire to do good, Lando helps Leia and Chewbacca devise a plan to save Han. And as we see in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi™, Lando has found the hero within himself, putting his life on the line for the Rebellion as well as the people he loves.


Boba Fett

“He’s no good to me dead.”

Boba Fett’s™ alignment is a little trickier. In the Original Trilogy, he’s a bounty hunter who works with villains such as Darth Vader and Jabba the Hutt. A killer-for-hire, he’s absolutely an antagonist, but he’s pushed into a sarlacc™ pit before we can really get to know him.

In The Mandalorian™, Boba Fett is still a killer, but he partners with Din Djarin against Moff Gideon and other Imperial remnants. In this way, he becomes an antihero, fighting for mostly the right reasons but in kind of the wrong way. His ultimate goal is realized in the season finale when he takes over Jabba’s Palace. Throughout The Book of Boba Fett™, Boba, along with his right-hand woman, Fennec Shand, redefine the role of crime lord. We won’t say they’re perfectly stand-up galactic citizens but hey, Mos Espa does seem to be a nicer place when they’re done with it … sorta.


The Bad Batch

“I like you. You don’t fit in here either.”

It’s clear that the Bad Batch™ are antiheroes from their entire pitch alone. This band of unique, or “defective,” clone troopers™ deal with threats a little differently than their regulated brothers. Clone Force 99™ is composed of Hunter™Crosshair™, Echo™, Wrecker™, and Tech™. Each has his own special ability that makes him a more capable soldier and they’re all willing to work a little outside the rules of engagement, war, combat, etc., if it gets the job done.

Make no mistake, the Bad Batch are good guys. They’re just also, well — their team name says it all.


Who is your favorite Star Wars antihero? Share your thoughts with other fans at side.show/geekgroup, and don’t forget to Let Your Geek Sideshow!