Andor Episode 10 Gives Us A Better Idea Of The Timeline For The Rise Of The Empire

There will be spoilers for "Andor" Episode 10 – "One Way Out."

From the very first frames of "Andor," the filmmakers behind it have been clear about exactly when this show takes place. The first season is set a firm five years before the events of the Battle of Yavin. Little is known about the pasts of many of the characters on the show, or what they were doing as the Empire came to power. Thanks to two different mentions in the 10th episode of "Andor," some things come into focus and tell us more about these characters and offer windows into their opposing but similar mindsets.

Luthen Rael

As Luthen Rael stands on that railless gantry, deep in the Coruscanti underground, letting his mole inside the ISB have it, he gives us a clue about how long he's been at this. In this stirring monologue that closes the episode, he talks about everything he's had to give up and there's a moment of frustration there where he says that he's working from a decision he made 15 years prior, working from a solution to an equation he figured out then. It's dictated his life since then.

With the Battle of Yavin five years away and Luthen looking back 15 years to see the tyranny and rise of the Empire and the need to fight against it, that actually places his math during the last year of the Clone Wars and before Palpatine's actual rise to power. This implies that Luthen saw what was coming from Palpatine before it happened and began putting pieces in place to fight against it even then, showing him to be both cynical and prescient. What did Luthen see that showed him the future? Was the mask he wears when taking people through the artifacts in his shop the real Luthen before this equation destroyed him?

Mon Mothma

Take the contrast of Luthen's cynicism and we'll turn it to Mon Mothma. In this episode, we discover that Mon Mothma might have to betroth her daughter to a gangster in order to continue her work for the Rebellion. She's doubly sickened with herself that she is even considering it, but what has to be done has to be done.

There's a casual mention in this scene that Mon Mothma's daughter is only 13 years old. That would put her conception and birth well after Palpatine's formation of the First Galactic Empire. Leida, Mon Mothma's daughter, is about a year or two younger than Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia Organa. What does this say about Mon Mothma? Why is it she wanted to bring a child into the world of the Empire? Was it because she was more naive about how things would work in Palpatine's new order? Mon Mothma seems to truly believe that the Senate can still work, so maybe it was naivety.

Or was it because she was merely keeping up appearances and Chandrilan customs with her husband? Either way, it's fascinating to go back and think about what these two touchstones on the timeline say about the characters on "Andor."

New episodes of "Andor" air on Wednesdays on Disney+.