If the Star Wars universe has taught us anything, it’s that in everything there is both a Dark Side and a Light, and both are powerful forces for merchandising. To that end, via The Star Wars Show, Lucasfilm has introduced the latest member of the Rogue One cast: C2-B5, an Astromech droid in service of the Empire, and thus the ostensibly “evil” twin to R2-D2. Not because he’s black! Just because of, you know, the kind of people he associates with … Which, we realize that’s painting with a rather broad brush, and no one should be subject to ugly stereotypes. It’s just, historically speaking, many members of the Empire have committed acts that most would regard as evil, from an objectively moral standpoint. That’s just statistics.
Anyway, here’s C2-B5, who should not be judged by the color of his plating, but by the contents of his programming.
Besides, in his case, C2-B5 is very much just a product of his environment. He’s kept around by the Empire solely to do routine maintenance on equipment, and he’s even subjected to frequent memory wipes to prevent him from developing a mind of his own—a system of marginalization and institutionalized oppression far, far away that, fortunately, has no real-world analogue. C2-B5’s also not the first of his kind to be introduced in Star Wars, as Return Of The Jedi featured a quick shot of R2-Q5, thus fulfilling the original trilogy’s diversity quota. As for whether C2-B5 will play a more significant role in Rogue One remains to be seen, but hey, at least he’s already out here breaking the color barrier on the different kinds of toys you can sell.