Getting you the latest news about Droids That Don’t Actually Exist In Reality is an important job, and I have a very important update: another droid from Rogue One has been revealed, and this one is an astromech! The droid is named C2-B5, and I’m excited to speculate all about it for you. Right now.
You may recall just a couple weeks ago we gave a long, scrutinizing look to the main featured droid in the Rogue One trailer, a tall, humanoid robot named K-2S0.
While humanoid robots are fascinating, my real interest is in the squat, cylindrical workhorse robots known as astromechs, the most famous of whom is R2-D2. This new robot, C2-B5, also appears to be an R2 unit, but this one works for the Empire.
It should be mentioned that we’ve already identified one other astromech droid from Rogue One, but C2-B5 is much more likely to have a significant role.
As an aside, I realized I have no idea how droids get named. It sometimes seems like the first two digits refer to the type of astromech it is – there’s nine established types (see pic), and we have a number of examples, like R2-D2 and R5-D4, of droids named after their type.
But that’s not nearly enough letter combinations to cover all the droids that must be out there. Hell, license plates have more variation. So, is there some standard I don’t understand? Why C2? Why B5? Surely some geek at Lucasfilm has this all figured out in a stained notebook somewhere, right?
Anyway, back to C2-B5. This droid looks like a conventional R2 unit, ordered in the Imperial Black paint scheme that the Empire seems to prefer for all their droids. We’ve seen Imperial R2s before, and they tend to be mostly black, like R2-Q5 here, who was seen working diligently on the Death Star in Star Wars.
This new droid was revealed in this little promo video, where the only thing specifically mentioned about him/her (for whatever reason Industrial Automation thinks it’s important to gender these things) is that the Empire gives its droids frequent memory wipes to keep them subservient and prevent them from developing any kind of synthetic personality.
The Rebellion, as we’ve seen, lets their droids remember and develop willdroid-nilldroid. That’s why R2 was such a clever and plucky little bastard.
I’m going to make a prediction that this was only brought up because, somehow, C2-B5 has managed to avoid these memory wipes, and is secretly developing a sentient personality. That leads me to predict that the little droid could have a role in the plot as an inside mole, an anonymous bit of equipment that is actually harboring a secret dose of free will and a desire to stick it to the Empire.
I’m hoping C2-B5 has some sort of role like that; I like to see astromechs get good roles, and a droid like this willing to work with the Rebellion hidden in plain sight within the Empire is a very compelling idea.
Another prediction: C2-B5 will feature in the first ever love scene between a droid and a Wookie.
I guess we’ll find out if I’m even close in due time. In the meantime, I’m just glad to meet a new droid.