The writing throughout the first season of Andor was impeccable, and these quotes are the very best, whether inspiring, sentimental, and humorous.
This list contains spoilers for season 1 of Andor.The tensions have built up over the past nine weeks, finally reaching their boiling point in the thrilling and deeply emotional conclusion of Andor season 1. Cassian Andor has officially joined the Rebellion, and the mystery about what he was helping to build on Narkina-5 has been revealed – as many had theorized, it’s the Death Star. The final episode of the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story prequel series brought all the major players back to Ferrix – a seething powder keg – giving them a first taste of the conflict that would soon become an all-out war.
Diego Luna expressed his gratitude for everyone behind Andor, a sentiment shared by fans as the series is being celebrated as Star Wars at its very best, even without a lightsaber. This is in part due to the seminal writing, from the narrative structure to the eloquent and juicy dialogue. There are so many titillating and intriguing lines in Andor, whether for the emotion behind them to the way they perfectly encapsulate the various characters.
Starting on a light note, Andor introduced audiences to B2EMO, who is a strong contender for the title of the best droid in Star Wars, competing with R2-D2 and K2-SO. Like many other droids, B2 starts as a funny character, such as in this line between him and Cassian – wherein he was asked to lie to protect Cassian, but then is given two lies to handle.
However, as the series progresses, B2EMO becomes the beating heart of Andor, a character of pure emotion given his unexpected grief upon Maarva’s passing – telling Brasso, “I don’t want to be alone.” This line, in retrospect, is a great beat of levity, and B2’s initially sassy personality had some fans theorizing he might end up having his databank transferred into K2-SO.
It takes the entire season for Cassian to truly come around and become a full member of the Rebellion. He only works with Vel and her ragtag bunch as Luthen was paying him. He wanted to fight against the Empire, but not as part of some organized mission. This line, in particular, showcases how he thinks and operates. He’s a shadow operative, a person who aims to integrate and dismantle from within.
Of course, this also demonstrates his limited scope of the reality of his situation. For the most part, he is correct that the Empire doesn’t notice someone like him. However, two people would prove him wrong – Syril Karn and Dedra Meero. They noticed someone in their house.
Andor gives the best demonstration of the Empire's nuanced perspectives. They are not just evil for evil's sake. In fact, what makes them so terrifying and dangerous is that in their heart, many of them believe what they are doing is righteous and good. This is the case of Major Partagaz.
He is a leading officer in the ISB, seemingly taking Dedra under his wing. When he asked what the role of the ISB is, she responded with the perfect definition, but she was wrong. He explains that their role is to excise the diseases plaguing the health of the Empire – rebellion and freedom. This metaphor best demonstrates their function and perspective in this story and enhances the understanding of the Empire as a whole.
There are some lines throughout Andor that are just treasure troves of creative writing, including this one from ISB supervisor Blevin to Syril and his fellow inspectors. In total, he says, "It took the combined ingredients of idiocy, ineptitude, and total disengagement for this farce to have reached the full apex of incredulous disaster." It doesn’t have some greater meaning to the story or franchise as a whole like others do, but it’s just something so clever to say aloud.
It’s a welcome moment of levity brought on by simply eloquent language, and it showcases the level of writing being employed. Blevin simply could’ve said something like, “You all messed up,” yet instead he took the clever road to roast Syril and them.
Just as Rogue One had, Andor enhanced audiences’ understanding of the Rebellion, establishing that not everyone in it is necessarily a good guy or there for the same reason. That’s best encapsulated by Vel’s group for the heist. Interestingly, Cassian finds himself facing a mirror in the character Arvel Skeen – both lying about their past and eager for payday.
While he isn’t as loyal to the cause as Cinta or Nemik, Skeen still fights wholeheartedly during the heist. He does reveal that his personal motivations seem to be steeped in revenge. The Empire won’t care to remember all the hurt they’ve caused – all the trees their axes have chopped – but people like Skeen will.
Fear is a very interesting concept in Star Wars. In Episode I: The Phantom Menace, Yoda explains, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.” Cassian is not among the Jedi Order and has thusly learned how to understand his emotions to know that while he is afraid heading into the heist, that fear is not controlling him.
It’s very natural to lose one’s nerve, especially when facing insurmountable odds, yet he was able to push forward and not fall into the darkness of true fear. Interestingly, this quotes somewhat correlates to a point made in Game of Thrones when Ned Stark says of fear, “That is the only time he can be brave.” In acknowledging his fear, Cassian demonstrates his control over it.
There are some subtle links in the dialogue to other Star Wars properties, such as Rogue One and Episode IV: A New Hope. The most obvious comes at the end of the heist. Nemik has just been pinned, crushed, and paralyzed by the payload, yet he shouts for Cassian to climb and escape. Many fans quickly noticed how this is in parallel to K2-SO’s final moments in Rogue One.
The comparison is only made more stark minutes later in the episode when Nemik dies. Perhaps when Cassian hears his friend, K2, shout for him and Jyn to climb in his final action, Nemik appears in his memory. Overall, though, this quote plays into the entire motif of climbing that permeates throughout season 1, from the moments when Cassian and others must physically climb to the symbolic climb toward rebellion.
Fiona Shaw is an inspired addition in Andor as his adoptive mother, Maarva, and as such, she had some incredible lines throughout her tenure, including her stirring speech from beyond the grave in the season finale. However, her true best line comes earlier, and as the last time she speaks to Cassian, it is simultaneously heartbreaking and heartwarming.
Continuing on in this line she says to him, “I’ve never loved anything the way I love you, and I’ve never fretted on anything more. But this time you can’t stay, and I can’t go.” She knows what their roles and purposes are in this galaxy, and thus she knows that this is the moment their paths diverge. If only she learned that it was Cassian, who inadvertently inspired her to act.
Luthen Rael, played by Stellan Skarsgård, is the best example of a realistic character in the Rebellion. He has noble intentions and hopes but has come to understand what it will really take to achieve their goals. This quote, between him and Mon Mothma, showcases their disparate perspectives, with Mothma being far more idealistic and him pragmatic.
He’s not being held up by fantastic and optimistic notions of what the Rebellion would look like. While she is still testing the waters in the barracks, Luthen is there on the frontline because, while it’s not unified and official, the war has begun.
While she might be more idealistic than Luthen, Mon Mothma is still quite aware of the tricky waters she is wading into. She knows she is being watched and monitored by the Empire, and as such, she is always in character, putting on a performance. Importantly, she divulges her truth to her childhood friend, Tay Kolma, saying, "The Mon Mothma people think they know, it's a lie" – marking him as the fourth person who knows what she is doing. The other three are Luthen, Kleya, and Vel (her cousin) but some logically believed she was referring to Bail Organa. Canonically, they are working together at this point, so it could mean that Jimmy Smits may appear in season 2.
What makes this line stand out most of all is when she says, “I learned from Palpatine.” She is referencing how he was able to hide his ambition from nearly everyone – that also includes his affinity with the Force, but she wouldn’t learn about that until years later.
Syril Karn goes on an interesting journey throughout season 1. At first, he is just an inspector for a corporate conglomerate, yet from his interaction with Andor, he gains new perspective and ambitions – along with a creepy fascination with Dedra Meero. His relationship with his mother and how often he is beaten down by higher authorities could make him somewhat sympathetic if not for words like this that he believes so wholeheartedly.
Overall, this statement is haunting to think about. He demonstrates how his perspective – that the ends justify the means even if it’s just for a single man – is limited. Syril really only sees what is ahead of him, as opposed to Dedra, who has a better understanding of the big picture. It’s also an example of the rhetoric the Empire uses to justify its action. They are preserving order at the expense of freedom and billions of lives.
In addition to Syril Karn, Andor introduces audiences to an intriguing but terrifying new villain – Dedra Meero. Her story begins as the underdog of the ISB, strangely giving viewers a perspective in the Empire who could be worth rooting for. However, based on her actions and comments over the subsequent episodes, Dedra is just as evil as the rest, but far more dangerous given how underestimated she is, and this quote best exemplifies her truly sadistic nature.
She looks at Bix during this interrogation as nothing more than a prop, a stepping stone to her great goal of catching Axis and quashing the rebellion before it has the chance to really develop. Whether she is doing this out of love and loyalty to the Empire, the Emperor, or her own pure ambition, only season 2 will tell. This line is made all the more menacing by the background music and Denise Gough's stoic performance, as the words comes alive from off the page and makes viewers panic about Bix's fate. Dedra was a lion playing with her prey.
Andy Serkis was a very pleasant surprise when he was introduced in "Narkina 5" as Kino Loy since he previously portrayed Emperor Snoke in the sequel trilogy. He ended up going on a complex emotional journey over his three-episode arc, ending in a gut-wrenching discovery that he can’t swim and thus cannot escape the prison – yet he still seemed at peace and proud of himself. His turn from trusting in the Empire’s word to the rebellious insurrectionist comes at the end of "Nobody's Listening."
This line is terse, and on the page, it’s just a simple statement, but the scene's stakes and emotionality make it a very inspiring moment – an affirmation. This is him saying “I’m in,” and from his other conversations with Cassian to his impassioned speech to the prisoners catalyzing the break, this will be Kino Loy’s defining quote in Andor.
In "One Way Out," Luthen delivered perhaps the best speech in all of Star Wars when speaking to Lonni, an ISB double agent for the Rebellion. He explains how he’s sacrificed himself for the greater good, and that in order to defeat their enemy, he had to become them. In this way, he proves that he is perhaps the most loyal rebel there is in Star Wars, although an individual that the history book will likely not remember.
This sort of mentality is what he will likely impart to Cassian now that they are working together – which falls in line with his comments to Jyn Erso about the dark things he’s done for the Rebellion in Rogue One. From the descriptive and clever language to the deep passion behind Skarsgård’s voice, this moment paints the Rebellion into a fascinating and complex picture, far different from the impression shown in the original trilogy.
The finale saw the powder keg that is Ferrix explode from the Empires encroaching grip. In addition to Maarva’s speech inspiring the citizens to fight back, they also finally reveal what Nemik recorded in his manifesto, and it is equally motivating and introspective for Cassian – his internal spark for rebellion is alit. Nemik described the notion of freedom and the fickleness of Imperial authority.
His manifesto cogitates the role of individual rebellion, and that they are happening all over the galaxy, but together they can achieve their goal. It will take time, but by uniting under his manifesto’s message, the Rebellion has the chance of succeeding. All they need is a catalyst, a single moment to bring them together. Cassian got that inspiration in the finale, and now he is in wholeheartedly and unselfishly on the mission.
NEXT: 12 Best Easter Eggs And Hidden Details You Might’ve Missed In Andor Season 1
Bradley Prom is a writer and a University of Minnesota alum living in Los Angeles with a deep love for the movies, television shows, games, books, and stories that have inspired and provoked him throughout his life. He grew up on Star Wars, Justice League, Jurassic Park, Pokémon, Spider-Man, Harry Potter, and Avatar the Last Airbender – to name a few or seven. In adulthood, his passions and tastes have evolved to include other fantastical tales, reality tv, and comedy. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Bradley has a great appreciation for queerness in all forms throughout all facets of entertainment and modern culture. He hopes in developing his own stories and shows, he will help see such representation grow and evolve.

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