Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hunting the Hunter: The Fate of Cad Bane in The Clone Wars

From time to time I like to take a step back and ruminate on characters or story lines on The Clone Wars.  Accurate or not, I find it to be a useful intellectual exercise that helps me think about writing and story telling.

We have a number of characters that have been created for The Clone Wars television series, one of my personal favorites is the Duros bounty hunter Cad Bane.

What purpose does Cad Bane serve in the Clone Wars?  

In the most general sense Bane provides us with a "cool" supporting character, similar to the role played by Boba Fett in the Original Trilogy.  Bane also provides us with a representative of a prominent class of characters in the Star Wars galaxy, i.e. the bounty hunter.  This blaster-for-hire character has powerful cultural origins drawing on concepts such as the Samurai or the old West gunslingers.

Bane also serves an important role in terms of story telling.  Anytime you are telling a story that precedes a story you have already told the fate of characters or plots is already well known to the audience.  If you simply used the same characters and their predetermined fates, you could tell an interesting story but you loose loads of dramatic tension.  With Bane and other characters created specifically for The Clone Wars you have unresolved fates.

Will Cad Bane survive the Clone Wars?

The funny thing about telling prequel stories is that when you create new characters you have to figure out why they didn't appear in the stories told earlier that where set in later period of time.  Cade Bane doesn't appear in Episode III, IV, V, or VI.  How do we explain the absence of such a major player in galactic events from the stage in the context of those four films?

There are four main explanations for the lack of Bane's character in the films, he either simply "accidentally" off-camera, retired, imprisoned or dead.
Gentle Giant Ltd's Maquette has dubious continuity value. 

"Accidentally" Off-camera

This is the ret-con way of explaining Bane's absence.  Basically he is still around the galaxy, but just by chance he wasn't around any of the key events of the four films.  This is the least satisfying of the explanations and as such the least likely that we would see upon the conclusion of The Clone Wars series.  It would be a shame to see the fate of such an interesting character as Bane be left unresolved.  The best justification for this fate would be if they wanted the character preserved for possible inclusion in the Live Action Series. Gentle Giant produced a Maquette statute of Bane that said Bane was, "a favorite freelancer of the Empire for many of their dirty dealings."  I would take a package blurb by Gentle Giant with a big grain of salt in regards to continuity, but we can't really ignore that it is out there and as such provides a potential fate for the character.


Bounty hunting is a rough business and no doubt Bane has made a lot of money, so perhaps he simply rode off into the sunset to enjoy his retirement.  Such a peaceful fate for such a violent character seems unlikely, and seeing how he is a villain a happy ending also wouldn't be the most satisfying for the audience.


We have already seen Bane in and out of Republic custody, so it is possible that as the Clone Wars ends Bane is arrested again and incarcerated.  As the Republic becomes the Empire, perhaps the Emperor keeps Bane in one of his many prisons, keeping him alive in case he could be useful but off the space lanes to prevent him from causing trouble.  This story line could also keep Bane viable for inclusion in the Live Action Series.


This is both the most likely and most satisfying fate would be for Bane to die during the final season of the series.  After all not many who interacted with Darth Sidious during the Prequel era went on to long lives, Sidious isn't a fan of loose ends.

We have seen Bane tangle with other bounty hunters, stand up to Hutts, duel with Jedi and dispatch Clones. It raises the question what would be the most entertaining and useful way for Bane to die and who should be the one to take out the baddest bounty hunter in the galaxy?

The answer is as simple as it is obvious, there is only one character who should kill Bane and that is Boba Fett.

"You can run, but you'll only die tired."

Fett taking out Bane serves as both a changing of the guard in the bounty hunting world (or Bounty Hunter's Guild if that is still in continuity) and also serves as a seminal coming of age moment for young Boba Fett in the series.

It is already clear that Boba Fett has matured greatly in the series, early on he had a nursemaid in Aurra Sing who was clearly bossing young Boba around.  By season four however we see a teenage Fett in charge of his own gang of adult bounty hunters.  If you think of yourself as the toughest hombre in the galaxy then the obvious step is to take out the individual that most people think is currently the toughest hombre.

We could have a serious blaster, gadget and hand to hand fight between Fett and Bane that would be pretty awesome.

SOURCES :, Wookieepedia, and


  1. Great article. TCW is spawning a lot of characters without their fate in sight.

  2. Awesome post :) Cad Bane's fate is almost as mysterious as Ahsoka. Personally I would feel better if he would just go to retirement