Since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker brought an end to the Sith – seemingly for good, this time – then Star Wars: Episode X should bring the Yuuzhan Vong back into canon as the next big villain. With Emperor Palpatine dead once again, and the Sith gone with him, it’s the perfect time to introduce a new galactic threat, and turning to the wealth of material in Star Wars Legends (previously the Expanded Universe) makes sense. With their imposing figures and their wills bent on conquering everything in their path, the Yuuzhan Vong could make for a stellar new story.
In the Star Wars Legends timeline, the Yuuzhan Vong appeared first in The New Jedi Order: Vector Prime by R.A. Salvatore. It was a titan among the Legends novels that set up The New Jedi Order, introduced the masochistic Yuuzhan Vong conquerors, and included the death of the mighty Chewbacca. The extragalactic race became a staple in the series for a long time afterward in both novels and comics, and included new challenges for Luke Skywalker’s fledgling Jedi Order, as the Yuuzhan Vong did not really exist within the Force. They could not be sensed or directly affected by Force powers, and they thrived on pain.
Assuming that Star Wars 10 and its sequels will include Rey, it would be much more interesting to see her, and hopefully some resemblance of a new Jedi Order, with a unified New Republic take on a serious threat that does not just rehash the Jedi versus Sith stories that have dominated much of Star Wars‘ canon media. While these stories are interesting and have given fans a wealth of entertainment over the years, there remains a great opportunity to dig into the Legends timeline and incorporate more of the elements that worked. The Mandalorian, for example, has done this with the krayt dragon on Tatooine, pulling from Knights Of The Old Republic, and it made for exciting, fresh storytelling in the Star Wars universe. The feature films should take note.
Anyone that spends time following Star Wars media knows that a large part of the fanbase is clamoring for more characters and stories outside the Jedi and Sith, and with the Yuuzhan Vong moving in to threaten the entire galaxy, this could be a great jumping off point to see how the common galactic citizen deals with this threat, and how that plays into the Republic and their Jedi counterparts. Because of the nature of the Yuuzhan Vong, their motives and battle tactics, it could allow a regular citizen to rise up to help the Jedi deal with this new enemy. Star Wars has always been about underdog heroes afterall.
Aside from an overarching galactic story, the Yuuzhan Vong would be visually refreshing. They are a species that disdains technology and uses genetically altered organic matter for all of their armor and spacecraft. Some of that matter is sentient and would be incredible to see how it works with all of the new special effects technology that just continues to achieve new levels of excellence. For Disney, this could be a fun challenge to help them continue upping their level of creating visually striking movies, while at the same time allowing them new stories not only for upcoming Star Wars movies, but games, novels, comics and their plethora of other initiatives.
The Yuuzhan Vong proved to be a huge threat to the Star Wars galaxy in the Legends timeline, and the villains left marks on the galaxy for hundreds of years. The infamous Darth Krayt went on to use Yuuzhan Vong armor when he took over the Sith Order, and even Cade Skywalker, generations after Luke, had to deal with the aftermath of their invasion and the use of their organic weaponry. Though the Sith are the natural enemy of the Jedi, that has already been done, and after Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Disney has the opportunity to move on to see how Rey and her new Jedi deal with a different enemy in Star Wars: Episode X. And, like in Star Wars Legends, this can eventually build up to a reinvented Sith that is bigger and badder because of the Yuuzhan Vong, because even though the Sith are dead, with Force users abound, they’ll never stay that way.