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I'm a Star Wars fan, however my knowledge of Star Wars comes from the movies, not the numerous books, fan websites, and other sources of information that allow one to talk about the Star Wars "Universe."

There have not been any female villains in the Star Wars movies. We have the Emperor, Darth Vader, Count Dooku, and recently Kylo Ren.

In the Star Wars universe are there female villains and, if so, ones that can be just as uncool as Darth Vader? Or is the Dark Side something into which only men are seduced?

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closed as too broad by Evil Angel, NikolaiDante, phantom42, Rogue Jedi, Lego Stormtroopr Jan 6 at 21:59

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Does Zam Wesell count as villain enough? She is a bounty hunter... – HorusKol Jan 6 at 6:19
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Do you want an answer in Disney canon, or Legends/EU canon? In Legends, Mara Jade was a strong Force user who worked directly for Emperor Palpatine (she was known as the "Emperor's Hand"), doing alot of his "dirty work" for much of her life. She tried to kill Luke several times, but Luke eventually brought her to the light side and made her a Jedi (and his wife). – Remy Lebeau Jan 6 at 6:44
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Captain Phasma is a woman... – Wad Cheber Jan 6 at 6:51
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Everything published before Disney bought Lucas's companies fell under various level of canon, loosely managed by Lucas's company with some amount of continuity. They were the "official" stories. Now, there is only Disney canon, everything else (except for the films, TV shows, and a few select books/comics) is no longer canon at all, branded under "Legends". Basically, Disney wiped the slate clean, threw away most of the existing universe, and started over. Star Wars canon – Remy Lebeau Jan 6 at 6:52
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Star Wars has had a dearth of female characters since the beginning. The original 3 movies had Leia, Luke's aunt, and that one rebel general whose name I forget, and that's pretty much it. The prequels had Padme and her handmaiden, Anikin's mother, and nobody else. (There was a female Jedi in III, but she just showed up to die basically.) Other than that, you've got a few extras and one-line parts, and that's pretty much it for the entire series until Rey showed up. The Holiday Special had more gender diversity than all 6 movies... – Darrel Hoffman Jan 6 at 14:54
up vote 19 down vote accepted

Lucas canon

Aside from what other answer answers mention:

Disney Canon

  • First Order's Captain Phasma (she's not as much of a freak as Kylo Ren, but she's quite happy committing and commanding massacres, genocide and other war crimes). This is far above and beyond an average Imperial officer.

  • Arguably, Captain/Admiral Rae Sloane, though I'd be more hard-pressed to consider her a villain as opposed to simply antagonist.

EU/Legends

  • Irek Ismaren's mother Roganda - Emperor's consort and 12BBY conspirator to earn Imperial trone for her son.

  • Intelligence Director Ysanne Isard, villain of X-Wing books

    • X-Wing also had a minor female villain, Erine somethingporother.
  • Admiral Daala, Tarkin's girlfriend, who launched not one but TWO failed attempts to whack the New Republic, one with a brand new planet destroying superwerapon, Sun Crusher.

  • Mara Jade was a subversion, set up as Luke's nemesis (she had a mental order from Emperor Palpatine sent moments before DS2 exploded to "kill Luke Skywalker") but later becoming Luke's frenemy, then friend, then wife and his son's mother. She was also very explicitly noted by Luke to have never been on the Dark Side despite serving as Emperor's hand

  • Lumiya, Mistress of the Sith

  • Vergere, Jedi turned Sith

  • Abeloth, Luke Skywalker's last great antagonist entity.

  • Darth Traya of the Old Republic. IIRC there was at least on more female Sith Lord at that time (or even more - this answer covers Old Republic)

  • EV-9D9 was the droid who tortured other droids in Jabba's palace and before that on Cloud City. "Tales from Jabba's palace" paint her as far more of a villain than even the films can

  • Darth Talon, serving Krayt

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I see you have a nice list, so I'll just leave this here - Tavion Axmis - Legends – StupidOne Jan 6 at 10:51
    
@SBI - yes, existing older answers had her so I skipped – DVK-in-exile Jan 6 at 12:13
    
Did you mention Darth Bane's apprentice and Ventress from canon? – Evil Angel Jan 6 at 12:32
    
From EU/Legends lets also not forget Darth Talon and Darth Malady. – Chris Aldrich Jan 6 at 13:54
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+1. Also just a note to others that Daala, Isard, and Mara Jade have a lot of EU books around them, too, so they aren't just minor EU characters. – enderland Jan 6 at 14:17

Asajj Ventress was a Sith apprentice to Count Dooku during The Clone Wars for most of the series, until she realized he was playing her so she became a rogue force-wielding mercenary-type.

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Ok, that was cool watching! – michael_timofeev Jan 6 at 6:27
    
She turned good in the end though. – Jeremy French Jan 7 at 20:53

Canon

There is an entire order of female dark side users called the Nightsisters. A prominent Nightsister was Mother Talzin, who was Darth Maul's mother.

Talzin

Asajj Ventress was also at one time a Nightsister and was later a Sith apprentice to Count Dooku.

Asajj Ventress

Legends

In addition to the female, Force-sensitive villains from Legends mentioned in other answers, the following characters also fit your criteria:

  • Darth Cognus was an assassin who worked for Darth Bane (who is canon) and his apprentice Darth Zannah (also female, but Legends-only) before becoming Darth Zannah's apprentice.
  • Darth Zash, who attempted to take over the body of her apprentice in order to prolong her life; this apprentice survived the attempt and became Darth Nox.
  • Atris was a Jedi who slowly turned to the dark side.
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"dark side user" != "villian", per se. – Raphael Jan 6 at 12:14
    
@Raphael true, but last sentence of question suggests that OP is mainly interested in force wielders. – Mirosław Zalewski Jan 6 at 20:41

Knights of the Old Republic

If you consider playing this game and haven’t done so, be advised that some of the following spoilers are central to its story.

  • You can decide to play the player character female and villainous.

  • The main villain on Dantooine is a fallen female Jedi called Juhani.

    You can turn Juhani light again and become one of your companions.

  • One of the instructors of the Sith academy on Korriban is a female Twi’lek called Yuthura.

  • Bastila will eventually turn to the dark side and become a short-time villain.

  • Revan – former Dark Lord and “founder” of the current incarnation of the Sith and responsible for the mess you are trying to fix – has the same gender as the player character […]


    […] because the player character was Revan, before the Jedis wiped her mind.

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If you can expand this to include all KOTOR timeline, that'd be great </office_space>. I'll link ot your answer from mine since I don't know much about Old Republic canon – DVK-in-exile Jan 6 at 15:18

Darth Bane story line introduced two female Darksiders:

These characters were first introduced in Star Wars: Jedi vs. Sith comic books and then re-imagined and expanded in Darth Bane novels trilogy.

Githany and Zannah are considered Legends now; Darth Bane spectre appeared in final episode of Star Wars: Clone Wars animated series, so he is somewhat of a canon.

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From SWTOR the MMO you have quite a few villainous females.

Most notable beeing 2 of the most powerfull Sith in the galaxy at that time.

  • Brontes, also known as the "Architect of Fear", was a powerful female Sith sorceress and member of the Dread Masters.

  • Bestia, also known as the "Keeper of the Dread Seeds", was a member of the Dread Masters, powerful Sith sorcerers.

Then there is the "comical" Darth Zash

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In the Empire Strikes Back one of the TIE pilots pursuing the Millenium Falcon is identified as Civé Rashon, a female who rejoices in the callsign Howlrunner.

In various Star Wars related tabletop and video games, her backstory has been filled in to fairly villanous proportions. She lead the elite Obsidian Squadron through several engagements, culminating in the Battle of Endor.

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Could you post the highlights? So far, she doesn't sound entirely villainous :) Probably because I enjoyed playing TIE-fighter – DVK-in-exile Jan 6 at 12:14
    
@DVK In truth, there doesn't seem to be a lot more. I first heard of her via the X-Wing miniatures game which doesn't include a lot of back story. I had thought that as an elite Imperial pilot, she was worth mentioning on status alone. – Matt Thrower Jan 6 at 12:51
    
Civé? Is she from Naboo? – Martha Jan 6 at 20:15

If you count all Imperial officers as villains then there are plenty.

The most senior that I know of from Disney canon is Moff Mors, who is introduced in the book Lords of the Sith.

It is interesting to note Moff Mors and other Imperial officers. The Star Wars universe is not sexist in any of the canon. The key -ism in Star Wars is speciesism. Many (but by no means all) Imperial officers are human, and non-human species, e.g. Twi'leks, Wookies etc. are exploited for their worlds' resources or as slave labour.

Edit: extra villainous added

There was also Queen Karina, Queen of the Geonosians. She controlled an army of undead Geonosians and held Luminara hostage.

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Moff mors was most certainly NOT villainus. To do so, would require her to actually.... y'know, get off her lazy ass and do something villainous. She's absolutely too sybaritic to qualify (compare that to Sloane's active participation in atrocities) – DVK-in-exile Jan 6 at 12:16
    
That's a good point @DVK, which is why I made the caveat "If you count all Imperial officers as villains...". Ultimately she may be viewed as being a villain in the sense that she is complicit in the pacification of Ryloth. She also encourages the slave trade by having her green Twi'lek servents (they have to match the palace decor after all) as well as planning who-knows-what with the Hutts – Accio_Answer Jan 6 at 12:26
    
@DVK I absolutely and vehemently disagree! If you need to be able to "get off [your] lazy ass" in order to be counted as a villain, then Jabba the Hutt wouldn't be a villain!! So... no, not a good argument. – Mr Lister Jan 6 at 12:54
    
@MrLister - name ONE villainous thing Mors did, other than molesting houseslaves? In contrast, Jabba's list goes on for pages (including literally squashing a baby Hutt to death after murdering said baby's parent) – DVK-in-exile Jan 6 at 15:17

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