Star Wars has officially introduced "Young Yoda". The younger version of the iconic Jedi Master made his first appearance in Marvel's Star Wars: The High Republic comic series, which is now on sale. The High Republic opens the door to a whole new era of Star Wars, some 200 years before the Skywalker Saga began in The Phantom Menace. Since Yoda is being whose lifespan covers centuries, he is definitely active in The High Republic - however, Yoda is a very different kind of Jedi at that time, having gone on "sabbatical" to figure out his own path through the Force. In Star Wars: The High Republic #1, Young Yoda finally makes his return!
Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS For Star Wars: The High Republic novel Light of the Jedi and comic series #1, Follow!
The first phase of High Republic stories revolve around a pivotal event in the Jedi Order's expansion: the opening of Starlight Beacon, a space station that the Jedi are establishing on the far frontier of The Republic, in the Outer Rim Territories. On the eve of the station's opening, a major hyperspace disaster throws the entire region into chaos, as ships have to make emergency diversions into strange unexplored territories. The Jedi and Republic are left scrambling, either to mount a rescue and/or simply survive the calamity.
Light of the Jedi shows how Jedi Avar Kriss jumps into action from Starlight Beacon during "The Great Disaster" in hyperspace, and ends up being a hero who saved many lives. Following the events of that book, Kriss returns to Starlight Beacon, where she is approached by Jedi Grand Masters Yoda and Vetar, who give her a hero's reward: becoming the marshal of Starlight Beacon.
Calling this version of Yoda "Young Yoda" is generous, given that the Jedi Master is still several centuries old at this point. Still, even though he's depicted still walking with his signature cane, Yoda still clearly has more pep in his step during the era of the High Republic - and far less white hair on his head.
What's more interesting is Yoda's role in The High Republic storyline. At this time in the Jedi Order, the interpretations of the Force were much wider and more varied - Yoda's beliefs were not yet the ruling view. In fact, during Light of the Jedi, Yoda is off on sabbatical, trying to find his own path as the Force leads him. This Yoda is not nearly as wise and self-assured as the older Master the Skywalkers knew, and there is already groundwork laid for Yoda's views to be challenged and shaped by his fellow Jedi. Seeing that character development may be even more interesting than seeing how well Yoda slings a lightsaber at this age.
Star Wars: The High Republic #1 is now available from Marvel Comics.