When a suspicious Yaddle trails the untrustworthy Dooku, she confronts him and the two have a showdown (complete with some “Duel of the Fates”-inspired music) that mirrors Dooku’s future fight with Yoda in Attack of the Clones. An exhausted Yaddle pleads for Dooku to come back to the light side of the Force. But when Palpatine tells Dooku, “Do you want to prove your loyalty? Kill her,” Tales of the Jedi seals Yaddle’s fate. Darth Tyranus cuts her down with all of his hatred. It’s a tragic end for yet another Prequel Trilogy legend.
The episode also confirms that Yaddle resigned from the Jedi High Council because she disagreed with its tyrannical ways, which explains why she’s replaced by Master Shaak Ti and didn’t appear in the movies beyond The Phantom Menace. In reality, the character likely raised more questions than answers and was sidelined to the puppet department to keep the focus on Yoda.
Although modern Star Wars has done a great job of adapting defunct Legends canon like Boba Fett’s escape from the Sarlacc Pit, Yaddle’s death in the old continuity plays out very differently. Revealed in 2003 YA novel Jedi Quest: The Shadow Trap, Yaddle dies at the age of 48, absorbing a bioweapon while accompanying Anakin and Obi-Wan on a mission to Mawan. Revamping her death for something more dramatic with Dooku makes sense, but given that she spoke the same way as Yoda in Legends, there’s a second change that will turn out to be too much for some Star Wars canon purists. Namely, a lot of fans are confused as to why Yaddle speaks “normally.”
Yaddle is voiced by Bryce Dallas Howard, who is a big deal in Star Wars, having directed episodes of The Mandalorian and arguably the best one of The Book of Boba Fett. The character didn’t have a speaking part in The Phantom Menace, however, most assumed she’d talk with the same riddle tones that have made Yoda famous for the past 42 years. We should’ve expected Howard’s normal voice, as 2021’s canon novel The High Republic: Out of the Shadows featured Yaddle speaking like any other Jedi. Thankfully, creator Dave Filoni has shed some light on why the change to Yaddle’s diction was made for Disney canon.
Filoni told Nerdist that when Howard asked about Yaddle’s voice, he said, “Does she speak backwards? I’m like, ‘No, I don’t think so. I think that’s a Yoda thing’…Frank Oz told me once that Yoda speaks that way specifically in honor of his own master. That was what he had thought about it. I try to keep moving forward these thoughts.” Legends established a serpentine Jedi named N’Kata Del Gormo as Yoda’s master, although the Hysalrian’s diction was never explored in any Legends stories, so it’s not clear how Yoda ultimately ended up developing his unique turn of phrase.
Vocal confusion aside, you might remember those wild theories that Yoda and Yaddle did the dirty, and that’s what led to Grogu. Following her death in Tales of the Jedi, it looks like that’s another tinfoil idea we’ll have to park alongside Jar Jar Binks being a Sith. For now, Yaddle is just another name etched onto the Jedi Council’s “in memoriam” wall, as Filoni wraps up another longstanding Star Wars mystery.