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Disney Robbed Us of Maarva’s Choice Words for the Empire in the ‘Star Wars: Andor’ Finale

It's probably for the better, but I love the energy.

Maarva's projection at her funeral in andor

Disney+’s Andor ended its first season as, yet again, my favorite Star Wars property. It took on themes that others could not and reminded us that the fight against the Empire is not just Jedi versus Sith but, instead, the people of the galaxy pushing back against the fascist rule of Vader and Palpatine. And it seems as if Andor took that hatred of the Empire just one step further, until Disney intervened.

At the end of the season, Maarva Andor (Fiona Shaw) is giving a prerecorded speech at her funeral, and after telling Cassian that she was staying on Ferrix to fight, it isn’t exactly surprising that her last moments lead to those on Ferrix doing just that. Her speech emboldens those who love her to fight for their home in her honor, and towards the end, she tells them to “fight” the Empire. Many online began to point out that it definitely looked like she didn’t actually say “fight,” and … well, they were right.

In an interview with Empire Magazine, star Denise Gough talked about her first day on set and let us all know the truth about Maarva Andor’s speech at her own funeral. She really did say “Fuck the empire” in it. “My first day was Ferrix,” she said. “I was given my two Death Troopers – one of whom had to be trained to run like a Death Trooper and not like a musical theatre star – and I couldn’t help myself, I just started doing the [hums the Imperial March]. Then, everyone started doing it.”

But Gough went on to recount Fiona Shaw’s speech at the end of the season that features Ferrix fighting back against the Empire’s rule. “Fiona’s voice was over all of us,” Gough said. “Except, at the end, she didn’t say, ‘Fight the Empire!’ She said, ‘Fuck the Empire!’ Which we were all really excited about. But we weren’t allowed to keep it, obviously.”

Now, it is still a Star Wars show, meaning that despite its more adult themes, kids are probably going to try to watch it, so maybe it’s a good thing they changed it to “fight the Empire,” but the rebel inside of me wishes that the studio had let them keep it. We still have Maarva’s mouth moving to the words of “fuck the Empire,” but hey, at least we know that she really did tell them to fuck off.

Andor vs. the Empire

The show isn’t afraid of calling the Empire what it is: a fascist regime. One of the things that has gotten muddled throughout the years (because fans love all aspects of the franchise) is just how horrific some levels of the Empire are. And Andor has the unique ability to explore those darker parts of the franchise with a more adult lens.

We see the lengths the Empire will go to for information on the Rebels and what they were willing to do to keep their control, and it led to Maarva earning that “fuck” the Empire that she originally gave us. But it is still Star Wars, and I understand why the change to “fight” happened, but man, can I get the adult cut of the scene please? Just to have?

(featured image: Lucasfilm)

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Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. A writer her whole life but professionally starting back in 2016 who loves all things movies, TV, and classic rock. Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. Star Wars makes her very happy. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast. And also a Harrison Ford one.