I want to talk about this except from this issue of Star Wars Insider. Because it is something I don’t think I have really thought about before.
Thrawn fans have made many observations about the difference between Chiss and Imperial politics/military hierarchy, but less about the Rebel’s internal structure and practices. Thrawn doesn’t quite get Imperial stuff because of how much petty bickering and personal vendetta’s end up hindering progress.
But both Chiss and Imperial military still adhere to a strict ranking system where one does NOT deviate from protocol. Even when Thrawn is bending the rules, he does it with a general protocol safety net. Thrawn has never dealt with a group of soldiers that don’t follow the ‘rules’, and I think that gives a lot more depth to his role in Star Wars Rebels. It makes sense for him to lose, because Phoenix Squadron is chaos to his order. He has spent so much time studying history and art, and cause and effect, but unless he can start planning for the unexpected, he is going to have a hard time.
I wonder what new conclusions Thrawn might draw about humans after dealing with humans who are not a part of the Imperial navy? It will be fun to explore where things go from here.
I really loved his detail because it does put a different spin on things. Thrawn is about order and coming from a society with a clear chain of command in both military and society. Coming into humanity with it’s personal vendettas, military structure not running on merit, and political coups it must be pretty crazy for him to grasp at first. Humans don’t always make rational choices and tend to make a lot of emotional ones. It’s the one trait Thrawn seems to struggle to wrap his head around despite understanding it from a logical stand point. Makes humans hard for him to predict. When Thrawn views the Phoenix crew as more a chain of command instead of a family, it makes his predictions have flaws. In a way, it humanizes Thrawn that he’s capable of making mistakes and not all knowing. I love insights into Thrawn’s mind like this since his stoic behavior and attitudes can be hard to wrap my head around especially paired with him being inhuman.