Even if you haven’t seen ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens‘ yet you probably have seen the Stormtrooper who is wielding an electric baton of pure unadulterated awesomeness and now we’ve found out a little bit more about him. Obviously there are going to be some spoilers here from the movie and other sources so head away now if you don’t want to know more.
Still here? Of course you are! Who doesn’t want to find out more about this mysterious character who has been dubbed TR-8R. We’re first introduced to him when Finn is on Takodana and the outpost is under attack by the First Order. This is the Stormtrooper who approaches and yells quite angrily that Finn is a “traitor” before engaging him in gladiatorial combat.
Lucasfilm has confirmed that the character is actually FN-2199 who goes by the nickname “Nines” in Greg Rucka’s novel ‘Star Wars: Before the Awakening’. He is a Stormtrooper who both trained and served with Finn during his stint in the First Order and so it makes sense that this trooper feels a personal betrayal that ex-squadmate has left him.
This image shows not only Stormtroopers in training but FN-2199 with red hair sitting against the wall. Apparently while not in combat the recruits have permission to take their helmets off.
What else do we know about the character? The voice may be familiar but not for any reason on a major active taking on a role unlike a certain other stormtrooper:
“You’ve heard his work before. Kind of! FN-2199’s voice (including, of course, “Traitor!”) was provided by David Acord, a Skywalker Sound sound editor. Acord’s production credits include Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Pretty good training for a stormtrooper. (Inside the armor is Liang Yang, a veteran stunt performer. Without his baton spinning, I wouldn’t be writing this.)”
So why exactly is Nines such a bruiser with a baton? Well not only was he trained as above to have one but it fits in with his primary role of crowd control:
“There’s a reason that Nines gets to use an awesome weapon (which is called a Z6 baton). He’s riot control, and part of an elite squad that enforces order or squashes uprisings. While their weapons are non-lethal in theory, the Z6 can definitely cause harm or kill an opponent when used with brute force. Look, if a lightsaber can’t cut it, you know it ain’t good news.”
While we sadly won’t be likely seeing him return to the big screen there is always a chance that he’ll be back and gunning for Finn in a future installment.
Are you happy to have learned more about one of the coolest minor villains to grace the ‘Star Wars’ saga? Do you think there is a chance we’ll see him back with more of his backstory explained on the big screen? Share your thoughts below!