Andor Villain Breaks Down Her Rivalry With Fellow Imperial Officer

Spoilers for Andor episode 4 below!

Andor villain star, Denise Gough, breaks down her character’s rivalry with a fellow Imperial officer. The latest entry in the long-running Star Wars franchise stars Diego Luna as Cassian Andor, the smuggler-turned-Rebel spy who helped the Alliance score their first major victory against the evil Galactic Empire in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Set five years before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, the new Disney+ series will chronicle how Cassian became the battle-hardened resistance soldier as the Rebellion grows from small stubborn factions into an organized force that will eventually overcome the power of the Empire. Along with Luna, Andor sees the return of other Rogue One: A Star Wars Story stars to include Forest Whitaker as Saw Gerrera, as well as Genevieve O’Reilly as Senator Mon Mothma.

Episode 4 sees Gough make her Star Wars debut as Dedra Meero, an officer within the Imperial Security Bureau (ISB). During an ISB council meeting, Meero learns of the deadly incident on Ferrix and the stolen Starpath Unit that was recovered. Although the administrative duties regarding Ferrix falls under another ISB officer, Lieutenant Supervisor Blevin (Ben Bailey Smith), she realizes that the missing technology also falls under her jurisdictional duties. Recognizing a possible pattern of insurrectional behavior, she requests access of the Ferrix file which Blevin swiftly denies, highlighting the professional, and likely personal, rivalry between the two ISB officers.

In a recent interview with Total Film, Gough detailed Meero’s rivalry with Blevin in the new Star Wars spinoff series, Andor. The actor described Blevin as « lazy, » highlighting that characteristic as the one that fuels Meero’s animosity toward him. Due to the fact that Meero faces gender discrimination, his lax attitude is offensive to her. Read what the actor said below:

« What better way to feel good about yourself than to rise up in a predominantly male sphere and become the best at that? It’s important to her – detail is important to her. That adversary that I have in there, what she doesn’t like about him is that he’s lazy, and laziness is something that she cannot tolerate. And, without making it too much of a gender specific thing, she is somebody who has to work 10 times harder than him to even get noticed for doing the same thing.

« What I loved about creating those scenes was I had trained myself to get so good at the language because the space language is really hard, trying to make it sound natural. I remember sitting opposite this actor and feeling so powerful that I was able to speak those words really, really clearly without having to cut and go back. There was something about it where I understood what it would be like for her to sit in front of these men who are telling her ‘Shush now, you’re only here because we’re ticking a box.’ And then she is able to show them where they’re at risk. She can’t afford to f–k up, basically. »

Gough clearly understands that Meero is always fighting against the current with her male colleagues. Although her commanding officer, Major Partagaz (Anton Lesser), recognizes her aptitude, Blevin and much of the council seemingly despises her for her ambition. With Meero being one of only two female members on the ISB council, Gough previously explained that her character has a chip on her shoulder and feels that she must outperform everyone else around her to at least feel as equally respected to her male counterparts. However, her relentless drive to prove her worth to the Empire may greatly affect Cassian, pushing him over the line to truly commit to the Rebellion’s cause.

Andor writer and creator, Tony Gilroy, previously described the series as an origin story for Cassian, covering how the outlaw will finally dedicate his life in service to the Alliance’s goals. Meero’s dogged pursuit of Cassian, coupled with her desire to be seen as an equal among her peers, may end up killing someone close to the future Rebel spy thereby solidifying Cassian’s position with the Rebellion. Meero may inadvertently cause more harm than good for the Empire, unintentionally creating one of the Rebellion’s greatest soldiers as Andor continues.

Source: Total Film