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Qui-Gon Jinn

Qui-Gon Jinn

Seamus McDermott |

Qui-Gon Jinn

Qui-Gon Jinn is a Jedi master from the last years of the Republic Era. He is Force-sensitive, and well-respected despite being a bit of a maverick and getting on in years. He rejected a seat on the Jedi Council in order to follow his own path with fewer restrictions. He follows a philosophy focussed on the Living Force to the exclusion of all else, including obedience to or harmony with the Council. Jinn brought Anakin Skywalker to the Jedi Temple on Coruscant under the belief that Anakin was the Chosen One, the Jedi who would restore balance to the Force. Jinn’s dying wish was for Anakin to become a Jedi and to fulfil the destiny of the Chosen One.

Jinn was born on the Core World Coruscant, the capital of the Galactic Republic, around 80 BBY. He became a Padawan of Jedi Master Dooku and rose to the rank of Jedi Knight. Jinn took on his own apprentice, Obi-Wan Kenobi, who was loyal to his master despite being more inclined to adhere to the will of the Jedi Council. The relationship between the two was sometimes strained, but they were an effective duo, successfully completing a mission to Pijal and other adventures. The culmination of the Pijal mission saw Jinn turning down a seat on the Council in favour of continuing his training of Kenobi.

Supreme Chancellor Finis Valorum sent Jinn and Kenobi to resolve the crisis surrounding the Trade Federation’s blockade of the Mid Rim planet Naboo in 32 BBY. The Federation, however, was under the influence of the Sith Lord Darth Sidious and launched a full-scale invasion of Naboo. Unable to stop the attack, Jinn and Kenobi rescued Queen Padmé Amidala as the city of Theed fell to the invaders.

En route back to the Galactic Capital, they had to land on Tatooine, where Jinn first met Anakin Skywalker, at that time a slave of some value due to his mechanical prowess and piloting skill – he was, however, still a small boy. Jinn tested Anakin’s potential in the Force by measuring the midi-chlorians in his blood; the boy tested higher than any Force-sensitive person in galactic history, more even than Grand Master Yoda. It then came to light that he was the child of a mother, but no father was involved. This miraculous birth further convinced Jinn that the boy was the one spoken of in the prophesy of the Chosen One. His high hopes were tainted, however, by a brief encounter with a Sith apprentice named Darth Maul. Jinn then understood that the Sith had also surfaced after a thousand years of silence.

Once back at the Temple, Jinn argued that Skywalker was the Chosen One and that the boy should be induscted into the Jedi Order. The High Council, however, conducted their own tests and deemed him too old and too full of anger and fear to take well to the training. They feared the result would not be positive. Jinn was unable to argue further at that time, as the conflict around Naboo needed immediate attention. He fought in the Battle of Naboo, during which he and Kenobi teamed up against Darth Maul, a fight which resulted in their being separated and Maul inflicting a mortal wound upon Jinn before being killed by Kenobi. Jinn’s final breath and last wish was that Kenobi take Anakin Skywalker as his apprentice. Kenobi promised to do so.

Jinn then became one with the Force, dying convinced that he had found the Chosen One and secured the right path for him.

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Qui-Gon Jinn Traits

Qui-Gon Jinn had light skin, blue eyes, long brown hair and brown beard, and stood 1.93m tall. Jinn was successful in attaining the rank of Jedi Master, but not without significant conflicts and disagreements with the Jedi Council and the rules and structures of the organised aspect of the group. He regularly disobeyed rules and deviated from the Code of the Order if it seemed good to him to do so. He also believed in the ability of a Jedi to have or close relationships with those outside of the Order, or even (non-possessive) romantic relationships – something the Council felt detracted from or endangered optimal training and success. He understood that students of the Force often faced more questions than answers, he trusted that it would guide and look after him.

There were other ways in which Jinn differed from his peers with regard to views on the nature of the Force. These differences often resulted in conflict and argument.

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For example, most Jedi focussed on meditation with an aim to glean and understanding of the future, whereas Jinn believed focus should be on the present, with only a secondary regard for the future. Along with this came a strong reliance on one’s instincts, trusting the Force to guide through intuition or even impulse.

Another major difference was his disdain for those who saw the Jedi as warriors or political weapons. His avoidance of needless violence even caused some to brand him a coward. In his view, acting in violence only validated the idea that they were political tools of combat. He thought that the Jedi should be based on a different planet than the political capital, as the close geographical location and cooperation could even lead some Jedi to see themselves as part of a political or military entity.

Jinn’s focus on the present, and his preference for diplomacy over force, led him to better understand those around him. Queen Padmé Amidala even reflected that Jinn seemed able to look right into her, even recognising her in her disguise as one of her handmaids.

Jinn often debated Jedi Master Mace Windu, but neither man sought out such conflicts.

Jinn was not entirely alone in his divergence from the Jedi norm; Master Tu-Anh was also known to go her own way at the expense of the Jedi Code or the expectations of the Council.

Film & TV Roles

Films

The Phantom Menace (1999)

Qui-Gon Jinn features in the first prequel film, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. In the film, he is a 48-year-old Jedi Master and mentor of Obi-Wan Kenobi, then only 25 years old.

The duo begins with a mission to the plant Naboo, their remit to soothe a political conflict between the planet’s government and a corrupt business conglomerate called the Trade Federation, and to have the subsequent Trade Federation blockade removed. The diplomatic mission quickly turns to a defensive military operation, as the Trade Federation attacks and the two Jedi rescue the Queen (Padmé Amidala) and they escape, though with some damage to the ship’s hyperdrive. The damage forces a pit stop on the planet Tatooine.

It is on Tatooine that Jinn meets 9-year-old Anakin Skywalker. Skywalker has a higher midi-chlorian count (a sign of Force potential) than anyone ever tested, even exceeding Grand Master Yoda’s count. Jinn then learns from his mother that she did not conceive him in the usual way – she became pregnant without intercourse: a miraculous birth. These circumstances lead Jinn to deduce that the boy is the Chosen One, the one the prophesies said would bring balance to the Force. Jinn is determined to bring the boy to the Temple for training. Through a bet on a pod race – which Anakin wins – Jinn is able to buy the boy’s freedom and his plan seems to be succeeding.

Their reception at the Temple, however, does not go as Jinn would have liked. Yoda senses fear in the boy, and the Council does not admit him to train there. Jinn decides that he will train the boy himself, as soon as Kenobi graduates to the rank of Jedi Knight.

Jinn, Kenobi, Amidala and the droid R2-D2 return to Naboo to free them from Trade Federation domination. Jinn and Kenobi fight a Sith Lord called Darth Maul. During the fight, Jinn is mortally wounded before Kenobi manages to slay Darth Maul. With his last breaths, Jinn asks Kenobi to promise he will train Skywalker. Kenobi accepts the responsibility.

Attack of the Clones (2002)

In the second prequel film, Attack of the Clones, Jinn’s voice speaks to Anakin as the young man slaughters the Tuscen Raiders; Yoda hears the voice too. Kenobi finds out that Jinn’s former master, Count Dooku, has turned to the Dark Side, becoming a Sith Lord. Dooku mentions Jinn as he interrogates Kenobi, even revealing sadness over Jinn’s death and the loss of any chance that his former apprentice might have followed him in rejecting the Republic.

Revenge of the Sith (2005)

In the third prequel film, Kenobi learns from Yoda that Jinn has returned from the ‘netherworld of the Force’ for the purpose of teaching them how to retain consciousness after death. The original filming included scenes of Yoda hearing Jinn’s voice just before the arrival of Senator Bail Organa – but the scene was deleted. In the novel version of the film, Yoda asserts that Jinn was a great Jedi Master. Also in the novelisation was a scene in which Yoda and Jinn have a conversation. This was intended for inclusion in the film, and it went so far as to have Liam Neeson asked to record the voice for it – but in the end the scene was deleted, and the recording never done

The Rise of Skywalker (2019)

Qui-Gon Jinn’s voice also makes a brief appearance in The Rise of Skywalker, as he and other past Jedi speak to Rey, urging her to battle against the rejuvenated Palpatine. Neeson provided the voice for Jinn’s part in this scene.

Television

The Clone Wars (2008–2014; 2020)

Jinn was mentioned several times, over an extended time period, in Star Wars: The Clone Wars television series as well. The first time is in the third season, but in two episodes, when he informs Kenobi in the ‘Overlords’ episode, and then Anakin Skywalker in the ‘Ghosts of Mortis’ episode. In the latter instance, he informs Skywalker that there are three other beings, in addition to Jinn himself, who believe him to be the Chosen One. The three beings are the Father (who embodies the Unifying Force manifestation), the Daughter (who embodies the light side) and the Son (who embodies the dark side).

In the sixth season, in the episode called ‘Voices,’ the voice of Jinn contacts Yoda again. Jinn cannot manifest himself in physical form (despite his presence on Mortis), but he is still able to instruct Yoda. Yoda follows these directions, moving across the galaxy to seek the secrets of becoming one with the Force, as Jinn did. An illusion of Jinn appears, along with Jedi Master Count Dooku and Obi-Wan Kenobi, during one of the tests of the Force Priestesses. Yoda passes this test and is then able to learn Jinn’s technique of retaining his consciousness after death.

Rebels (2014–2018)

Star Wars Rebels does not feature Jinn at all, though in the third season of the program (‘Twin Suns’ episode), Kenobi avenges Jinn’s death, battling ad defeating Darth Maul on the planet Tatooine. Kenobi baits Maul by using Jinn’s favoured form of lightsabre combat, and when Maul overextends himself, Kenobi is able to take advantage and deliver the killing stroke.

And again, in the season 4 episode called ‘A World Between Worlds,’ we hear Jinn’s voice along with many others from different time periods and locations throughout the Star Wars universe.

Is Qui-Gon Jinn the best Jedi?

Despite his tendency to go against the Council’s desired directions and code of behaviour, there is no doubt that Jinn was among the most powerful and accomplished of the Jedi. Had he not been slain by Darth Maul, it is very likely that he would have taken his place on the Jedi Council, despite the ofttimes tense and confrontational nature of his relationships with other members of the body. Perhaps the only reason he was not already a member of the Council, prior to his death, was that contention and perhaps some concern that he, like his former Master, Count Dooku, might have come to reject the spirit and purpose of the Council in the end. We will never know.

Who was Qui-Gon Jinn's master?

Jinn’s Master was Count Dooku. The relationship between the two was founded on trust and respect, though Jinn struggled to understand the inner workings of his Master.

What happened to Qui-Gon Jinn's lightsabre when he died?

Though Count Dooku favoured an ornate, fancy lightsabre design, Jinn opted instead for something simpler – as fits his personality and focus on the present. Kenobi gave the weapon to Anakin, for a brief period, after Kenobi himself had built a new weapon, but Anakin did not use the weapon long term. Instead, Jinn’s lightsabre wound up in the Jedi Temple, as a memorial.

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