Count Dooku, (Darth Tyranus), didn’t make much of an impression when I first watched Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. But thanks to this job, I’ve become fascinated by him.
As his name suggests, Count Dooku is a real aristocrat. His parents were either proud to have a Force-sensitive son (there are many theories about this), or his father refused to have anything to do with him.
All but abandoning his first born and turning to his brother (who would become a tyrant), Dooku’s life began in an interesting bubble. One that would pop with the death of his former Padawan, Qui-Gon Jinn.
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Did Dooku Want To Destroy The Sith?
This is under debate. He tells Obi-Wan Kenobi if he joins him then they will destroy the Sith. (Very similar to how Darth Vader would try to get Luke Skywalker to join him).
Dooku did want to destroy the Sith at one time (and this is canon though we only see certain moments on screen). Dooku was a Jedi Master at the start of The Phantom Menace.
His views on the Jedi Order were skewered at best (more on this further down), but he wouldn’t leave the Order until one month after The Phantom Menace. While the movie was going on, Dooku met with Darth Plagueis the Wise (Palpatine’s master), on several occasions, (he didn’t know he was talking to a Sith).
Darth Plagueis was intrigued by Dooku and considered taking him as an Apprentice. As either a replacement for Palpatine or a spare, (Darth Maul was alive during this, so if they had turned Dooku, he would’ve been an Accolite).
Palpatine learned of this and decided to meet Dooku as well. The two wound up becoming friends and when word reached him of Qui-Gon’s death.
Palpatine comforted Dooku, (Palpatine had killed Plagueis in his sleep and Maul was now dead). At this time, Palpatine knew of Anakin Skywalker and how he might be the Chosen One.
But, the boy was too young to be of use to him (and Dooku confided in him that he intended to leave the Order and find the Sith). This delighted the Chancellor, and he watched as Dooku grew more and more disgusted with the Jedi.
Until Dooku learned that his brother had set himself up as a tyrant and was ruining his planet and people. And the Jedi did nothing because he’d declared himself to be independent of the Republic.
Dooku killed him and reclaimed his birthright. Becoming the Leader of the Seppritist Movement and, for a time, seemed content.
When he next spoke to Palpatine, Dooku admitted that avenging Qui-Gon couldn’t stand in the way of his other goal. To take down the Jedi Order and rebuild it to what it’s supposed to be.
Palpatine revealed that he was Darth Sidious and invited Dooku to join him as his apprentice. Promising to fulfill Dooku’s wish and make the Jedi pay.
Dooku agreed and we met him in Attack of the Clones. Despite never meeting Obi-Wan before the war, Dooku felt a grandfatherly affection for the Jedi Knight.
To the point where he attempted to save Obi-Wan from Order 66 twice. The first was also the time when Dooku told Obi-Wan the truth.
The truth about how most of the Senate was under the influence of Darth Sidious, (he never tells Obi-Wan that Sidious is Palpatine). Obi-Wan refuses to believe him and Dooku is visibly disappointed for a moment.
(This scene more than any other reveals the true nature of Dooku. Despite Obi-Wan having avenged Qui-Gon years ago, Dooku is still grieving his death).
He even says that he could use Qui-Gon’s help (and told Obi-Wan that Qui-Gon was his former Padawan). Dooku would show remorse on several occasions regarding the Jedi he knew.
Despite all of this, Dooku didn’t intend to destroy the Sith. He wanted to remake it, by keeping the Rule of Two and adding an army of Force users.
Dooku had a plan with Palpatine, (not knowing that his master had his own plan). One where the galaxy would be ruled mostly by humans.
And the Force users would rule over all, settling disputes in lightsaber duels instead of bowing to corrupt officials. In a way, this would come to pass though Dooku wouldn’t be there to see it.
Did Dooku Want to Kill Sidious?
Yes and no. Their relationship was mostly civil, but with the Rule of Two. It’s customary for an Apprentice to attempt to kill their Master, (until they succeed).
Dooku wasn’t like that. Eventually, he would take on apprentices (Asajj Ventress, General Grievous, and Savage Opress).
But Dooku was loyal to Palpatine (sadly this wasn’t a mutual feeling). Palpatine viewed Dooku as a tool.
Replaceable. Useful, intelligent, and able to hold his own against Yoda (something that he struggled with).
When Palpatine ordered that Dooku kill Obi-Wan Kenobi in order to turn Anakin Skywalker to the Dark Side. Dooku attempted to change his mind.
Someone of Obi-Wan’s character denouncing the Republic would be a boon to their cause. But when Palpatine questioned Dooku on his reasoning, things went south.
Seeing Dooku refer to Obi-Wan as like a grandson to him, made Palpatine scoff and refuse to consider it. They’d already tested the Jedi Knight once and he failed to be turned.
There was no point in attempting it again this late in the game. Dooku agreed and let go of his attachment to Obi-Wan.
(This may have been the final straw for Palpatine. Anakin was just one step away from the Dark Side, he didn’t need Dooku anymore.)
Is Count Dooku Good Or Bad?
Both. Dooku had an honor code when it came to dueling. He rarely used his Force abilities and relied mostly on his lightsaber skills.
Back when he was a Jedi, (and up until he was confirmed to be a Sith Lord), Dooku was often called an idealist. When he ruled his home planet of Serrano, Dooku proved to be a good leader.
He cared about his people and wasn’t interested in conquering or gaining more power. We see him call several Jedi his friends, and apologizes to them (though he still either tried to kill them himself or ordered them to be executed).
Mace Windu and Kit Mundi still held him in high regard. They defended him when Padame Amidalla, (former queen of Naboo), claimed he was behind an assassination plot.
He was Yoda’s last Padawan, and the last Jedi Master to willingly leave the Order, (there have only been twenty to do this). He also never had the Sith eye color, (Yoda sees him with red eyes in the Clone Wars but this was just a vision).
He hated mixing flesh with cybernetics (though he might have overlooked Grievous since he was very good at killing Jedi). He was also a racist (anyone that’s not human is expendable to him).
Dooku would often invade planets and force the residents to join the Seppertist army. Mostly every alien in the Senate was on the Seppertist side.
Dooku despised Jar’kai, (duel-wielding)users. If you can’t beat your opponent with one lightsaber, adding another was insulting.
To Dooku, wielding a lightsaber should always be elegant, graceful, and an art. He was a fencer first and foremost.
(It’s ironic that Asajj Ventress, General Grievous, and Savage Opress would all use styles that he hated).
Why Did The Jedi Not Believe Dooku?
When Dooku was still a Youngling, (Jedi Hopeful), he had a best friend named Sifo-Dyas. They underwent the Padawan tournament together and wound up having to duel each other.
Dooku didn’t want to humiliate his friend, but he also wanted to get Master Kostana to choose him as her Padawan. Sadly, she would choose Sifo-Dyas and Yoda would claim Dooku as his Padawan.
Most Jedi choose their Padawan because they see potential, or feel a kinship with them, or just want to spend time with them. Yoda chose Dooku as a project.
Dooku was fascinated by prophecies and started questioning the Jedi. (This would lead him to share his interest with his Padawans).
Yoda kept trying to make Dooku adhere to the Code, and Dooku, in turn, would try to please him. (He wanted Yoda’s approval, but he learned that the only way to get it was to let go of his questions).
Despite things becoming tense between Master and Padawan, Dooku still kept a good friendship with Sifo-Dyas. And the fate of his friend would drive a wedge into Dooku’s core.
Sifo-Dyas possessed the rare ability of Foresight. He saw the fall of the Jedi, the rise of the Sith, and was the one who commissioned the clone army.
But the Jedi Council refused to believe him. They locked him up on Oba Diah. A prison meant for Jedi who could see the future.
Dooku was ordered to kill him after Palpatine learned that Sifo-Dyas had commissioned the clone army. Dooku did so and took his body to Felucia and had his body cremated.
Dooku would state that Sifo-Dyas had been punished by the Jedi for using his gift, but the Council denied everything. If they admitted that the Sith were back, they would lose face in the Republic.
And that was something that couldn’t be allowed to happen. The Jedi had to be seen as wise and powerful at all times.
(This is another reason why Dooku left the Order, and would prove to shake Anakin Skywalker as well).
Count Dooku was a very calm individual. He respected skill and cared for Qui-Gon Jinn like a son.
He was one of the greatest duelists of his generation, and it’s been argued if he was a true Sith Lord. Thank you for reading and remember: The Force will set us free.