Here’s What You Need to Know About the Phase 2 Clone Troopers Before ‘Star Wars: Andor’
Star Wars: Andor is poised to premiere on Disney+ on September 21, 2022, and will provide a deep dive into the early rebellion. The series follows Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) four years before the events of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Star Wars: Andor tracks how Andor transformed from a thief, into one of the most loyal figures of the Rebel Alliance. Additionally, it also tracks the progress of the early formation of the Rebel Alliance under such figures as Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker) and Mon Mothma (Genevieve O’Reilly).
However, the detail that really caught Star Wars animated fans’ attention in the last Star Wars: Andor trailer, screened at the D23 Expo 2022, was the presence of Phase II Clone Troopers. The glimpse of Phase II Clone Troopers in the trailer confirms that they are getting their live-action debut in Star Wars: Andor. Phase II Clone Troopers have made appearances in several Star Wars video games and were seen numerous times in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, but have not appeared in any live-action projects until now.
Clone Troopers are the highly trained soldiers who make up the Grand Army of the Republic. These clones were developed to be far superior to battle droids and were all modeled after the Mandalorian bounty hunter, Jango Fett. For years, these Clone Troopers fought for the Republic. However, their structure had been tampered with by the Sith, resulting in them turning against the Jedi during Order 66. After the Republic fell, Clone Troopers served as some of the Galactic Empire’s first Stormtroopers, though most ended up being replaced by humans or retiring.
What are Phase II Clone Troopers in Star Wars: Andor?
Phase II Clone Troopers came about sometime during the Clone Wars—when Clone Troopers seemingly upgraded their armor. It’s unclear when this happened, but the Clone Troopers can be seen wearing two distinct forms of armor during the war. This resulted in them being divided into Phase I and Phase II Clone Troopers, depending on what model of armor they wore. By the end of the war, though, nearly all the Clone Troopers boasted Phase II armor, making this model the successor to Phase I armor.
This resulted in all the Clone Troopers who came to serve under the Imperial army, being Phase II Clone Troopers. When the Galactic Empire turned to Stormtroopers, they modeled their armor off of the Phase II Clone Troopers’ armor, before eventually giving the Stormtroopers their own unique model.
The reasons for why the Phase II armor was introduced were never explicitly given. However, it is easy to deduce that, over the course of the war, advances in technology, and a deeper understanding of the Clone Troopers, led the Republic to upgrade the Clone Troopers’ armor. After all, the initial Phase I armor was modeled off of the Mandalorian armor. While this armor paid tribute to its ancestors, it is likely the Republic realized that Mandalorian armor might not have been the best choice for soldiers and decided to give them a new look that more closely resembled the Stormtrooper design that we’re familiar with.
Phase I vs. Phase II Clone Trooper Armor Explained
As said above, Phase I Clone Trooper armor bore a striking resemblance to Mandalorian armor. The helmet is nearly identical in style, as is the body glove covered in white plastoid plates. Just upon looking at the armor, though, one can tell that it looks both clunky and uncomfortable, as well as unable to withstand a lot of force. Meanwhile, the Phase II Clone Trooper armor does away with the Mandalorian resemblance and is more tailored to human anatomy. The new helmet was designed to have a more comfortable fit, as well as an advanced air filtration system. Meanwhile, the design does still use the body glove with plastoid plates, but the plates are more formfitting, lighter, and stronger than Phase I’s plates.
As for which suit is superior, depends on if we’re going off of the official Star Wars canon or Star Wars Legends. In Legends, Phase II was seen as an improvement over Phase I. However, in the canon Star Wars: The Clone Wars, some characters had reservations about the Phase II armor. There were suggestions of Phase II armor being of a lesser quality than Phase I, with some clones even preferring Phase II’s predecessor. Hence, it seems Phase II was certainly designed to be superior to Phase I, but it’s unclear if the actual armor met its expectations.
(featured image: Warner Bros.)
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