Who Are The Witches Of Dathomir? Nightsisters Explained
One of the best things about the different Star Wars shows you can find on Disney+ is that they are well-crafted to the point that the canon continuity doesn’t get messed up. Of course, while the newer shows such as The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett don’t feature some of the other previous Star Wars movies and shows, they often reference them from time to time. In episode 3 of The Book of Boba Fett, you might have heard Danny Trejo’s character mentioning the Witches of Dathomir. But who are the Witches of Dathomir?
Featured in Star Wars: Clone Wars and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, the Witches of Dathomir are a group of force-sensitive female natives of the planet Dathomir. They were quite prominent in terms of their use of force-fueled magick, but were decimated by General Grievous and a droid army.
The Witches of Dathomir are actually quite powerful that their best magick users can contend with a fully trained Jedi Master or Sith Lord. However, similar to how the Jedi struggled against a massive droid army in Attack of the Clones, not even the Nightsisters were able to survive the onslaught of Grievous’s army and the wrath of Darth Sidious himself.
Who Are The Witches Of Dathomir?
If you listen carefully to the newer Star Wars series such as The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett, you will understand how committed the showrunners are to the continuity of the entire franchise, as they seek to connect the newer shows with the events of the older movies and shows.
We saw this in The Mandalorian when they connected the series to the events that happened to Mandalore in Clone Wars and Rebels. Of course, the same formula is used in The Book of Boba Fett, which references past events while also introducing characters from previous works such as the comics.
In episode 3 of The Book of Boba Fett, Danny Trejo was introduced as the Rancor trainer that would be working under Boba Fett. He and a Rancor calf were the peace tributes offered by the Hutt Twins, who made the mistake of ordering Black Krrsantan to kill Boba Fett without realizing that Jabba’s former territory had already been promised by Mayr Mok Shaiz to the Pykes.
When Trejo’s character was teaching Boba Fett all about the Rancor, he briefly mentioned that Rancors were once ridden by the Witches of Dathomir back in their home planet. While this prompted Fett’s interest in learning how to ride a Rancor, we cannot help but notice how the Witches of Dathomir were referenced in this episode even though it was just in one sentence. So, who are the Witches of Dathomir?
The Witches of Dathomir are basically natives of the planet of Dathomir. They are better known as the Nightsisters, which are actually female natives of Dathomir, the same planet where Rancors originated from.
Before the events of the Clone Wars, the Witches of Dathomir were also quite prominent because of their amazing skills and prowess. The Nightsisters are capable fighters that are proficient in close combat due to their expert swordsmanship and their ability to fight under cover of the night. This made them amazing assassins in their own right.
What Species Are The Witches Of Dathomir?
The thing about Dathomir is that it is inhabited by different types of creatures and species that include the Witches of Dathomir and the Rancors. The planet was prominently featured in the Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order game, as it is one of the planets you have to explore thoroughly.
In that regard, the Witches of Dathomir are merely one of the many species that inhabit the planet. There is no specific name for their species, but the Witches of Dathomir are often referred to collectively as the Nightsisters. But while the Nightsisters don’t have a specific species, their Nightbrother counterparts are actually from Zabrak species.
However, a Star Wars employee named Leland Chee, who wrote extensively about the Nighsisters in an article Star Wars Insider, said that the Witches of Dathomir were actually bred from female humans and Zabraks. That means that they are hybrid species that have no specific name.
Witches Of Dathomir Abilities
As mentioned, the Witches of Dathomir are very skilled fighters, but close combat isn’t the only thing they are good at. The Nightsisters are even better at using something they call magick, which is actually a supernatural skill they use to augment their physical capabilities and use for offense as well.
While she was never trained as a witch herself, Asajj Ventress, a powerful force user and Sith assistant, is proof of how skilled Nightsisters can be. Ventress, despite focusing more on her Sith skills, has shown tremendous abilities as a fighter and is said to be just as powerful as Anakin Skywalker during the events of the Clone Wars.
In fact, the stronger leaders among the Nightsisters are so powerful that they can easily contend or even defeat strong Jedi Masters and Sith Lords. One such example, aside from Ventress, is Mother Talzin, who is the leader of the Nightsisters and is arguably the strongest of them.
Meanwhile, in Jedi: Fallen Order, you encounter a Nightsister survivor named Merrin, who is so powerful with her use of magick that she often uses it to enhance the physical skills of the Nightbrothers. She can even resurrect dead Nightsisters and allow them to aid her in battle.
Do The Witches Of Dathomir Use The Force?
One of the reasons why the Witches of Dathomir are quite powerful is due to the fact that they are sensitive to the Force. In short, they use the Force to fuel their magicks. However, they use the Force in a more mystical way compared to the deliberate approach that the Jedi and the Sith use whenever they are employing the Force.
For example, the Nightsisters use the Force to fuel their magick whenever they want to conceal themselves or teleport from one place to another. They also use the same magick to strengthen their Nightbrother minions during fights.
So, in a way, the manner in which the Witches of Dathomir use the Force is more inclined with the occult. Even though the way the Jedi and the Sith use the Force is already mystical and supernatural, the Nightsisters use it in a more mysterious way.
However, the Nightsisters are also known to use their powers in a way that is quite similar to how the Jedi and the Sith do. For example, Mother Talzin was able to fight on par with Darth Sidious by using Force lightning. She is also capable of transferring her soul from one body to another, which is what Sidious did as Emperor Palpatine when he survived through the use of a new body in the newer Star Wars trilogy.
What Happened To The Witches Of Dathomir?
When Danny Trejo mentioned the Witches of Dathomir in The Book of Boba Fett, you could sense that he was talking about them in the past tense. That means that he was implying that the Nightsisters are an extinct people. So, what happened to the Witches of Dathomir?
Simply stated, the Witches of Dathomir were wiped out and decimated during the events of the Clone Wars. The decimation of the Nightsisters is merely one of the many side events that happened during the entire Clone Wars. You can also see this happening in the Star Wars: Clone Wars animated series.
Who Betrayed The Nightsisters?
The Nightsisters weren’t betrayed as an entire group. However, one of their sisters, Asajj Ventress, who worked as Count Dooku’s disciple, was actually betrayed by her own master after Darth Sidious learned that his own disciple was training her.
So, in an attempt to prove his loyalty to Sidious, Dooku or Darth Tyranus was forced to kill his own disciple. However, Ventress survived and went back home to Dathomir to tell Mother Talzin that Dooku betrayed her. This prompted the Nightsisters to mount a counter-assault on Dooku, who they tried to assassinate through Savage Opress, who was supposedly sent to Dooku as his new disciple but was actually on an assassination mission.
Who Killed The Nightsisters?
After Dooku learned of the assassination attempt by the Nightsisters, he sent General Grievous and an entire droid army to the planet of Dathomir. So, in short, it was Dooku who ordered for the Nightsisters to be killed, but Grievous was the executioner of the plan.
How Were The Nightsisters Killed?
When Dooku sent his general and a droid army to Dathomir, the Nighsisters were overwhelmed. As powerful as they may have been, they were no match for an entire droid army and someone as well-trained as General Grievous, who could give Jedi Masters a run for their money with his lightsaber mastery.
However, a few Nightsisters survived the attack on Dathomir but remained hidden, especially Ventress, who went on to live a life as a bounty hunter. Meanwhile, Mother Talzin still wanted revenge on Dooku and ended up healing her son Darth Maul, who we thought died in his battle with Obi-Wan Kenobi in Episode I: The Phantom Menace.
Maul and Talzin conspired to kill not only Dooku but Darth Sidious as well. However, they were eventually defeated when Talzin could not contend with the pair of Sith Lords, who proved too much even for her. It was ultimately Grievous that dealt the final blow to the most powerful Nightsister.
Meanwhile, Asajj Ventress eventually worked with the Jedi Quinlan Vos, who became her lover. Ventress and Vos mounted an attempt on Dooku’s life. However, when Vos was about to get killed by the Sith Lord’s Force lightning, Ventress sacrificed herself to save her lover’s arms. After her death, Asajj Ventress laid to rest in Dathomir along with the rest of the Nightsisters, who were basically extinct.
While the Witches of Dathomir were thought to be extinct, the canon story of Jedi: Fallen Order showed that at least one Nightsister survived the decimation. This survivor is Merrin, who became one of Cal’s allies during the events of the game.