- After being placed in an underwater prison by the Empire, Cassian Andor is forced to perform hard labor.
- In competition with other prisoners, “his table” has to produce piecework machine parts for the empire.
- But what exactly are the prisoners building on Narkina 5?
Actually, everything went smoothly for Cassian in the “Star Wars” series “Andor” on Disney +. After the successful raid with a rebel group on the empire’s cash reserves, he left and wanted to go into hiding completely. However, for “incitement” he quickly fell victim to the Empire’s brutal justice system.
On the water planet Narkina 5, Cassian (Diego Luna) now has to do forced labor for 6 years and manufacture machine parts with other prisoners in monotonous piecework. But what exactly are these intended for and why is the fulfillment of a quota for the empire so important here? There are many possible answers.
The floor is lava
In order to keep the prisoners under control and to guarantee maximum productivity, the imperial overseers used a perfidious method. An electrified floor that can be turned on and off can subject inmates to tremendous physical pain.
The strict production quotas, on the other hand, ensure that each “assembly group” for food is in direct competition with the other workbenches. This is intended to nip a gathering and possible escape attempts in the bud.
Cassian and the other prisoners have no choice but to follow the strict instructions of their “supervisor” Kino Loy (Andy Serkis) and keep their productivity high. Because the prisoners of the table hanging behind are subjected to the brutal torture by the electric floor.
Piecework for the empire
In “Star Wars: Andor” we’ve seen for 2 episodes how Cassian and the other prisoners have to assemble six-pointed, star-shaped components day after day. The work process has apparently been perfected for an extremely high production margin. 7 floors with 7 rooms and each 7 tables with 7 men are responsible for the production of just this one component.
What does the Empire need these heavy pieces of machinery for, which are likely to be processed elsewhere, perhaps across the galaxy? Since we don’t know at the moment, only a few exciting theories can be put forward.
Oppression by new droids?
A big theme of “Star Wars: Andor” is surveillance and government/imperial control and punishment. So it would be cruelly and poetically appropriate for the Empire’s captives to build tools of their own oppression, special surveillance droids.
While the shape of the components doesn’t match any known Imperial droid, including the one that captured Cassian, “Andor” isn’t stingy with introducing new elements into the “Star Wars” canon. With high production, the Empire would be able to increase its control over humans even further. This also corresponds to their current policy of robbing people of even more rights and freedoms and mutating more and more into a dictatorship under the cloak of security.
A well-known and common element in science fiction. Also used, for example, in the remake of “Total Recall”, where Douglas Quaid (Colin Farell) assembles police robots for the fascist state. Since “Andor” leans more towards “mature” and “hard” science fiction, it’s possible that the series creators have incorporated a subtle but important reference to the overall theme of the series here.
Supplies for the Death Star construction site?
Also possible from the looks of the machine parts, and even a little more likely, is that the prisoners of Narkina 5 are making parts for a major Empire construction site. The biggest at this time would probably be the Death Star, which is in final production at the time of the series.
Of course, its existence is a top military secret of the Empire. So probably not even the guards know what the components manufactured in their prison are really for. It would therefore be only logical to employ prisoners who are serving long sentences for this work.
The sheer quantity and size of the parts would speak for it. It would also inject more tragedy into Cassian’s life. Eventually he dies at the end of “Rogue One” at the hands of this very Death Star, for which he was probably forced to make components.
We may also never really know what exactly the workbenches assemble on Narkina 5. Not everything in “Star Wars” needs to be told and demystified. But maybe the terrible revelation will come at the end of “Andor” or even through an Easter egg in another “Star Wars” series.
New episodes await us every Wednesday in the Disney+ novelty program. In total, the first season of “Andor” consists of 12 episodes. “Andor” season 2 is already confirmed.