Sunday, April 10, 2011

42 BBY: Jedi vs Sith - The Essential Guide to the Force: Telepathy: Saesee Tiin Address

Thank the maker for Spike TV and its dedication to running Star Wars marathons on the weekend. If it wasn’t for a little downtime with Luke, Leia, and Han this past Saturday I may not have worked up the energy to write this post. I’ve been highly engrossed with my teaching duties this past week and I didn’t think I’d have any time to write this month, but fortunately I got ahead of the curve on Friday which enabled me to sit down on a Sunday afternoon and spend some quality time with Mr. Lucas’ world.

And thank the maker for Plaristes! If not for his attention to detail I would defiantly miss little gems The Essential Guide Jedi vs. Sith has to offer a Star Wars chronologist.

My post today focus’ upon pages 65-67, which delineate on the subject of Jedi telepathy, and how this ability affected Jedi Master Saesee Tiin, and his relationship with his own Jedi Master Omo Bouri.

Master Saesse Tiin, an Iktotchi Jedi who is not given to speaking, recorded for future padawan’s his experience with telepathy, and did so by outlining the strengths and weaknesses of such an ability. His most amusing line for me was how this ability caused him much embarrassment: “For unlike my peers, I was a natural receiver and transmitter of thoughts, a condition that I – not then able to organize incoming thoughts or consistently contain my own deliberations – often considered a hindrance and, at times, an embarrassment. I will not share details, but allow you to imagine” (66). And imagine I did! I think that one of the things that would probably cause Master Tiin embarrassment would be the thoughts of other Jedi revolving around the subject of sex. He was probably privy too many intimate thoughts of fellow Jedi members, if not for him, then maybe for each other. Cause for embarrassment indeed!

The other aspect of Master Saesse’s recording which I found educational was the history he provided for young padawans about his Master, Omo Bouri. Not even remotely humanoid, Master Omo Boui was a sentient parasitic species called a Wol Cabasshite. What made this relationship work for Saesee Tiin was that he was unable to read his Master’s thoughts, because his physiology was so foreign his Iktotchi brain was unable to decipher anything the Jedi Master said: “At first, I couldn’t understand his thoughts or a single word he said. It was a most refreshing experience” (67).

Upon investigating what Omo Bouri looked like on Wookieepedia, I discovered the picture above. This picture if not one of master Omo, but what a Wol Cabasshite looks like, and remarkably, this species had a split second cameo in Return of the Jedi!

In the ‘behind the scenes’ section of the Wol Cabasshite write-up, it gave a description of how the inclusion of this small alien in Lucas’ ’83 film evolved into the backstory of Master Saesee Tiin: “The Wol Cabasshites first appeared in Richard Marquand's Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, where they were shown, fleetingly, in the Jabba's Palace sequence. They were first named in the "Jabba's Palace Limited" set of the Star Wars Customizable Card Game. The backstory and elaboration of the species was provided by "ejmacki" through's Hyperspace feature, "What's The Story?," which worked with information provided in the card game. The "What's the Story?" information would later be used by Ryder Windham in his 2007 reference book, Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force, and in 2008's The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia.”

I know I’ve beaten this drum before, but this is a prime example of intertextuality and allusion at work, again, in the Star Wars universe. Text influencing and affecting how future text see and engage with images and stories that have come before it. I love this stuff!

For my next post I’m going to look at Watson’s Jedi Apprentice #11, The Deadly Hunter. Until then my friends, may the Force be with you.


  1. Great job on these! I love the insight you show! Very rare and valuable. You should definitely compile these into a book one day!

    Don't know if you've had a chance to see it yet, but there's a great petition gathering steam that politely asks Lucas to preserve the integrity of the Star Wars saga by treating the EU with the respect he has for 30 years.

    Check it out here and spread the word!:

  2. Thanks for the positive words Joe!

    I've taken a look at the petition and I agree with what is at the heart of its intention: preserving the integrity of the EU and treating it with respect. The integrity of the EU is the soul of Star Wars and for the Star Wars saga to continue into the future, the work of all its artists needs to be respected.

    However, the petition points to the Clone Wars as one of the largest contributors to breaking continuity, and it's here I give pause.

    I honestly feel like The Clone Wars is the best thing that has ever happened to the Star Wars franchise after the films. I'm really not sure how other fans feel about the show, as I've come across a plethora of opinions - both for and against TCW. But I think (though I am not certain) that this opinion puts me in the minority.

    There is some bad Star Wars storytelling out there. I haven't come across a lot of it yet but I know it's out there, and if Lucas fixes things - for the better - then I think that it's ultimately a good thing for STAR WARS as a whole. Take Ahsoka for example: I think she makes Star Wars better, not worse. I know there was no mention of her in ROTS, but I'm willing to accept Lucas can write an entertaining and plausible reason why she wasn't mentioned (albeit after the fact).

    I think what I'm trying to say is that I trust Lucas with Star Wars, but with that being said, I don't think he should behave as the ‘Emperor’ of its story.

    What I'm trying to say is this: I agree with the petition, and in fact I'm going to sign it, but I don't like how it has targeted TCW as the "problem" with Star Wars continuity. I think it's much more complicated than that.

    As it is, I'm writing an essay about this very idea, and it was this petition which prompted me. The title of my essay is 'An Artistically Democratic Star Wars', and you can probably gather what I'm trying to say from the title. I’d rather have an artistically democratic Star Wars accompanied with continuity errors, than a continuity error free Star Wars, at the expenses of Lucas creatively correcting, or otherwise behaving in an artistically tyrannical manner, the words and images of other artist his own company employed in the first place.

  3. I've enjoyed every episode of TCW to a certain extent, but I don't think any of them compare in terms of quality to the best Clone Wars comics from Republic, Jedi, and Obsession.

    As for Lucas ignoring or mangling the EU, just look at all the amazing stories and articles that have been done by Abel, Jason, Dan, and James Luceno by not only acknowledging but incorporating elements from all over the EU. Georgey boy should take a lesson.

  4. I haven't yet read the 9 volume Clone Wars TBP series which came out between 2003 - 2006, two years prior to TCW television show, so much of my non-bias (for lack of a better word) towards TCW obviously stems from that. From what I've read about the Clone Wars trade paperback series, it was much darker and grittier than what we're seeing in TCW TV show, but I myself cannot comment on whether or not the TBP series is better than the TV show. I am looking forward to making the comparisons though, because I do feel like, as a fan, I'm out of the loop as to why some people are so upset by TCW.

    I agree with your second point: I love the work done by Pena, Fry, and Wallace (I have yet to come across Luceno) and I'm constantly beating the drum of their Star Wars brilliance any chance I get. And I agree that Lucas could make Star Wars better by being inclusive with the work and history already completed by other extraordinary writers, rather than creatively correcting things because they don't fit "his" vision. I think we saw a little bit of Lucas' willingness to include the EU rather than write over it in the Episode Commentary #3.17: The Ghosts or Mortis where Filoni talked about Lucas including the characters of Bane and Revan in the storyline -characters that are not originally his, but exist in the EU (though one could make an argument Bane is Lucas' character seeing as how he was first mentioned in the novelization of TPM).

    But yes, I do think Lucas should take a lesson from the writers you mentioned, because if he started seeing how rich the world he started is, and pulled from that richness to further deepen and connect the universe of Star Wars, (and realize it doesn’t have to be at the expense of his own originality) he would realize there is a lot to work with.

  5. My thoughts on the petition are exactly same as yours, and I signed it almost immediately after it was created.

    New information about learning Star Wars in schools: There's Star Wars -themed workshop at Adams State College in Colorado, and course at Oklahoma State University. Here's links for news in

  6. Those two courses look awesome. I'd love to be both student and teacher for each.

  7. Sweet! Joe finally found the time to add the rest of the Jedi vs. Sith entries.

  8. I love the Jedi vs. Sith book. It was really cool to read the stuff from the characters' points of view. I almost cried when I read Pooja's reflection on Anakin. Chris Trevas is my favoutite SW illustrator. His paintings are amazing! You should check out his site.


  9. I haven't read Pooja's reflection on Anakin. Now that you've pointed it out I look forward to reading it. Agreed, Chris Trevas does some amazing work. As a matter of fact, I've considered buying myself a second copy of the Jedi vs. Sith book, removing the artwork from it and having them plaqued to hang on the back wall of my classroom.