With her striking beauty and sharp features, Adele Dazeem…..ehhh, sorry…Bazine Netal, makes an intriguing figure, one who graced the silver screen for mere seconds in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and one who I hope to see more of in the future in the massive franchise that is Star Wars. Played by Anna Brewster (Anne Boleyn, Versailles) Netal is a bounty hunter and mercenary who alerts the First Order to the presence of the Resistance droid, BB-8 on Takodana Castle. And that’s all we get of the character–at least, onscreen. Netal’s made some appearances in comics and novels set after The Force Awakens, but there’s still so much we don’t know about her.
Where does that leave the character? Is there a chance we’ll see her again? And why am I so obsessed with minor characters most people forget exist? I’m not sure I can answer all those questions, but what I will do is dive into Bazine Netal’s backstory and trivia within the Star Wars canon and offer some ideas on how the character can reappear in the future. Without further ado, let’s dive into the life of Bazine Netal.
Spies and bounty hunters are an integral part of the Star Wars universe. While they often specialize in a specific skill, whether that’s assassination, splicing, or thievery, Netal is the type of agent with many dangerous masteries at her fingertips. The mysterious woman appeared in the short story “The Perfect Weapon,” by Delilah S. Dawson which details the character’s early life and missions.
Netal was born on the Inner Rim planet Chaaktil under a secret name and was taken from the orphanage where she lived by the pirate Delphi Kloda who seemingly formed an attachment to the child after she hurled a rock at him. Kloda brought Netal to his combat school where she trained in a wide range of deadly martial arts. Netal endured brutal lessons under Kloda but the violence and death she was surrounded by melded the young woman into a dangerous opponent not to be underestimated—a fact which Kloda learned the hard way after his student killed him when he betrayed her.
“Of course. I can disappear. I can be anyone. Even Kloda wouldn’t recognize me, and he raised me. That’s the foundation of any job—not being noticed.”Bazine Netal “The Perfect Weapon”
Netal leaves her homeworld and makes a name for herself as a bounty hunter and master of disguise. She eventually becames an agent for the First Order and poses as the bounty hunter Grummgar’s girlfriend at Maz Kanata’s castle on Takodana. The last we see of the character she’s using her skills and position to track down the legendary Millennium Falcon in the Flight of the Falcon storyline across comics and junior novels.
Equipment and Skills
“Bazine hooked a finger through the key ring, doing her best not to smudge the matte-black rishi eel ink she wore painted on her forefingers to cloak her fingerprints. ROOM 3, the tag read. Could be an invitation. Could be the job. Either way, she was going to find out. Sliding off her stool, she stood and stretched, readjusting her severe but exquisite outfit as she subtly checked her weapons. Snub-nosed blaster: check. Slender blade: check. Small thermal detonators hidden in the wedges of her boots: check. Seven throwing knives sewn into her jacket: check. Whatever the hotel guest hoped to pay her for, he was going to be surprised by her bag of tricks.” The Perfect Weapon,” Chapter 2.
As a master of disguise, Netal can blend into any environment and situation. In one of my favorite passages from “The Perfect Weapon,” she’s forced to work with a younger, inexperienced mercenary. He underestimates her so she toys with him by donning multiple disguises, including a gruff gunner named Paf and a seductive Twi’lek before revealing to her companion they are the only two people aboard the ship. Netal is an expert in deception and manipulation and uses her good looks and striking fashion to put her victims at ease before striking from the shadows, often fatally. Netal isn’t a messy death dealer, however, she’s professional and tidy and leaves no evidence of her involvement in any crime or infraction.
Netal is a quick learner and studies various martial arts forms and tools of the spy trade. She’s an effective fighter and while she prefers to strike from the shadows, she’s capable of open combat and deadly with throwing knives. Her fashion choices seem exquisite to the untrained eye, but just as Queen Amidala’s elaborate dresses disguised their useful purposes, Netal’s outfits enhance her abilities and hide deadly weapons she can use in a moment of crisis.
Future in the Star Wars Universe
I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Bazine Netal again in the future, especially given her role in the Flight of the Falcon storyline across novels and comics. The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett prove the hype around bounty hunters isn’t dying down any time soon.
Maybe Delilah S. Dawson will grace us with another short story about the character. “The Perfect Weapon” was an enthralling read and I loved the insight (and intrigue) into Netal. The cool thing about Netal is how unrestricted her backstory is. She’s surrounded by secrets and mystery, making her an ideal character for an expanded story. There’s an element of tragedy that makes the character compelling, from her early years as an orphan to feelings of emptiness and her near breakdown following Kloda’s betrayal, the only person she ever trusted.
Bazine Netal is a dangerous and fascinating character, and maybe we’ll see her in a spy-thriller set during the New Republic and the rise of the First Order. There’s plenty of untapped potential surrounding the world espionage and murder within Star Wars, and Netal fits nicely within that world.
“My bedtime stories were tales of bloody pirate raids. My friends were grizzled murderers who taught me how to punch. My jump rope was a garrote. But it was better than the orphanage.”-Bazine Netal ”The Perfect Weapon”
If you want to learn more about Bazine Netal, check out “The Perfect Weapon” by Delilah S. Dawson, author of Star Wars: Phasma which is next on my reading list!
Header art by Sarah Wilkinson from Star Wars: Women of the Galaxy written by Amy Ratcliffe.
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