The Star Wars universe comprises many exciting anti-heroes. And in case you are not familiar with the term, an anti-hero is an individual who can be selfish, greedy, and on the surface, not likable.
In other cases, they can even be a villain that performs an otherwise heroic act to save or ally with a protagonist. Below, we list five characters from Star Wars believed to be the top anti-heroes in the saga.
Some of the anti-heros listed below transformed from villain to hero. Others were not likable, but their intentions helped save the galaxy.
And one particular character performed nothing but villainous acts, though they still ended up with a grudge against the saga’s primary antagonist.
1 – Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker
Anakin Skywalker’s midi-chlorians were the highest of any Force-sensitive on record. This made him incredibly strong with the Force, something we saw on several occasions during The Prequel Trilogy.
However, Anakin could never control his emotions, and it ended with him falling to the dark side and embracing his new moniker, Darth Vader.
We first met Vader in A New Hope, where he served as the film’s primary villain until we crossed the Emperor, also known as Palpatine and Darth Sidious, in The Empire Strikes Back.
In that same flick, we discovered there was more to Vader than we initially thought when he revealed he was Luke Skywalker’s father. While Vader battled Luke on several occasions, Luke’s refusal to join the dark side prompted the Sith Lord to revert back to his old identity as Anakin Skywalker.
When the Emperor attacked Luke with Force lightning, Vader turned on his boss and tossed him into a reactor shaft. Vader’s turn back to the light side also fulfilled the Prophecy of the Chosen One, allowing him to strike balance within the Force.
2 – Han Solo
If it wasn’t for Vader’s actions at the end of Return of the Jedi, Solo would definitely take the top ranking here. In A New Hope, Solo just wanted to make a quick buck shipping Obi-Wan Kenobi and Luke Skywalker across the galaxy.
For Solo, it was just another day at the office before he would return to smuggling, killing, and theft. As we know, it didn’t happen that way, and Solo became one of the focal figures for the Rebellion.
After he and his Wookiee partner Chewbacca received payment for shipping Luke, Leia, R2-D2, and C-3PO, they initially left, refusing to become part of the Galactic Civil War. However, Solo changed course and ended up assisting Luke and the Rebels in winning the Battle of Yavin.
Throughout the Original Trilogy, Solo also had a selfish personality and often made sarcastic remarks to the main characters, which only continued to fuel his anti-hero persona.
But that didn’t stop him from leading a group of Rebels to Endor and destroying the second Death Star’s shield generator, which ultimately ended in the Death Star’s overall destruction.
Solo was by no means a likable character when we first met him. But by the end of the Original Trilogy, he became a fan favorite. Solo’s good side also shone in The Force Awakens, when he allied with Rey.
He once again showed his caring side when Leia asked him to find their son, Kylo Ren, and try to turn him back to the light side. Unfortunately, it did not end well for Solo when he confronted his son.
Upon tracking down Ren, Solo asked Ren to turn against the dark side. Ren, however, impaled and killed Solo. In The Rise of Skywalker, Solo has a similar conversation with Ren through a vision.
And this time, Ren had enough strength to embrace the light side as Ben Solo, thanks to Han Solo’s insistence.
3 – Jango Fett
One of the galaxy’s most notorious bounty hunters during the Prequel Trilogy, Jango Fett was the one hired to assassinate Padme Amidala in Attack of the Clones.
Obi-Wan Kenobi, ordered to seek out Padme’s would-be killer, found Fett on the planet Kamino and the two engaged in a duel. Fett also took part in the Battle of Geonosis, where he met his end against Mace Windu.
While Jango Fett came off as ruthless, his primary motive was to be a good provider for his son, Boba. Fett is even remembered as saying, “I’m just a simple man trying to make my way in the universe.”
If that meant allying with Count Dooku and fighting Jedi, Fett was willing to do it to make his and his son’s life better. This showed that Jango was a family man who cared deeply for those closest to him.
4 – Din Djarin
While Din Djarin is not as notorious as some of the other anti-heroes on this list, he is still among the most lethal of characters whose ethics remain questionable. He established his willingness to use violent tactics when he apprehended a fugitive following a brutal fight on the planet Pagodon.
He then uttered the famous line, “I can bring you in warm, or I can bring you in cold,” to the fugitive. Right there, you knew Mando had some malicious intentions. Then he met and saved Grogu after initially seeing the young Force-sensitive as merely an asset for a client.
And while Mando has shown time and again that he cares for and has become a father figure to Grogu, he mostly remains the cold-hearted and unforgiving character we initially met in The Mandalorian.
Sure, he is a character fed up with low-paying bounties, who uses any means necessary to make money, but Din Djarin has also grown softer toward those who cannot help themselves, further epitomizing his anti-hero persona.
He also cared for Grogu so much that he allowed the child to see him without his helmet on, something Mandalorians belonging to the Children of the Watch are not allowed to do. Mando is a character of two extremes who will go out of his way to defend those he cares for the most.
But if a character ends up on his bad side, he will be their worst enemy. And it is something you can expect to see more of in the future.
5 – Maul
We first met Maul as the villainous apprentice to Darth Sidious in The Phantom Menace. Darth Maul’s mission was to capture Queen Padme Amidala, but he failed when Qui-Gon Jinn fought him off on Tatooine.
He later met up with Obi-Wan Kenobi and Qui-Gon during the film’s climax, killing Qui-Gon before Obi-Wan seemingly killed him moments later. Maul’s supposed demise meant he was out as Darth Sidious’ apprentice, and Maul didn’t take this too kindly.
During The Clone Wars, Maul took it upon himself to challenge and defeat the series’ primary antagonist, Darth Sidious, which puts him into the category as an anti-hero.
However, he never allied with the Jedi or any of the protagonists out of good faith, only doing so out of necessity, and it often ended in betrayal.
A prime example occurred in The Clone Wars, when he forewarned his Shadow Collective Lieutenants about the rise of the Galactic Empire. He even went as far as to share his vision of his former master’s victory over the Jedi with Ahsoka Tano.
Sarah Hood is a freelance content writer and editor with a love for all things Star Wars. When she’s not writing, she enjoys cooking, singing, and spending time in the great outdoors.