If there’s one thing that casual Star Wars fans may not be familiar with, it’s that Count Dooku’s story is actually quite tragic if you look at it objectively. That’s because he was a former Jedi Master that ended up becoming disillusioned by the Jedi Order, as this was what caused him to walk the path of the dark side. Eventually, he became a Sith Lord under the guidance of none other than Palpatine himself. So, why and when did Count Dooku become a Sith?
Count Dooku became a Sith Lord because he wanted to change how things were done in the galaxy after realizing that the Jedi Order had become pawns of a corrupt Republic. He turned to the dark side and became Palpatine’s apprentice on 32 BBY after he killed Jedi Master Yaddle.
One of the things that we know about Dooku is that he tried to change things for what he thought was better for everyone else in the galaxy after realizing that the Republic was corrupt. Nevertheless, he still got overwhelmed by his desire to change the galaxy, such that he became a corrupt agent of the dark side as well. So, with that said, let’s look at how Count Dooku became a Sith.
Why did Count Dooku turn to the dark side?
Throughout the story of Star Wars, we’ve met a lot of different characters that tend to see things differently compared to the mainstream way of seeing things. Of course, one of the first renegade characters we met was Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, who was introduced in ‘Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.’ Qui-Gon was portrayed as a disobedient Jedi Master that listened more to the will of the Living Force than the will of the Jedi Council.
Of course, Qui-Gon got this renegade side of him from his own master, Count Dooku, who used to be a Jedi Knight himself. While Dooku eventually became a Sith Lord that served under Darth Sidious (Palpatine) and was the leader of the Separatists that went to war against the Republic during the Clone Wars, he was actually a good Jedi Master in the past.
Back when he was a Jedi Master, Dooku was serious about serving the people. A good part of his story was portrayed in ‘Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi,’ where we saw a few episodes of his past before he went to the dark side.
While he was still Qui-Gon’s master, they went on a mission to rescue the son of a senator that was kidnapped by hungry villagers that were merely trying to find a way to force their senator to give them better living conditions. That was when Dooku realized that there were corrupt elements within the galaxy as he and Qui-Gon fought the senator and his army to save the starving people of that planet.
Then, years later, Dooku and Mace Windu went on a mission together to retrieve the body of a fallen Jedi Master. They soon discovered that the ones that killed the Jedi Master were the guards working for the senator on that planet.
After Dooku and Windu defeated the guards, the remaining guard confessed that they killed the Jedi Master when they saw that she was protecting a corrupt senator using his senate seat to become wealthy at the expense of the people of the planet.
However, Mace Windu still sided with the Republic and the Senate instead of protecting that planet’s people, as Dooku quickly realized that the Jedi Order had become a puppet of a corrupt Senate. He understood that the duty of the Jedi Order was to protect the Republic, but the problem was that the Republic was run by corrupt senators that were oppressing innocent people around the galaxy.
Between that time and the events of ‘The Phantom Menace,’ Dooku started working with Palpatine secretly as they hatched together different plans that eventually led to the Clone Wars. One particular example was the deletion of Kamino from the Jedi Archives. Dooku also secretly helped create the clone army as he manipulated his friend, Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas, into helping him hire the Kaminoans to create this grand army.
All in all, it was the fact that Dooku became disillusioned by the Jedi Order and the Republic that he decided to walk down the path of the dark side. After realizing that the Jedi and the Republic were no longer functioning as they should, he wanted to change the order of things in the galaxy. And this eventually led him to work with Darth Sidious, who was actually Supreme Chancellor Palpatine the entire time.
When did Dooku become a Sith Lord?
Ever since he decided to walk his own path as a Jedi, Dooku started working with Palpatine secretly while laying down the foundations of the Clone Wars and the eventual destruction of the Jedi Order. However, Dooku was not yet a Sith Lord back then. That’s because Sidious had an apprentice in the form of Darth Maul. And because of the Rule of Two, Palpatine couldn’t take Dooku into the Sith.
Dooku’s status as a Jedi Master allowed him to work with Palpatine without getting noticed. That’s because he could infiltrate the Jedi Temple’s most guarded places and feed Sidious information. In fact, as seen in ‘Tales of the Jedi,’ he deleted Kamino from the Jedi Archives.
After the death of Qui-Gon Jinn on 32 BBY, Master Yaddle broke the news to Dooku, who was seemingly upset by what happened but was acting suspiciously. Yaddle, of course, decided to follow Dooku, who went to meet up with Palpatine. That was when Yaddle confronted the two and even asked Dooku to help her defeat Sidious.
However, Dooku decided to fight Yaddle instead while he was still torn between the two sides he was a part of. Nevertheless, he proved his loyalty to Palpatine by defeating and killing Jedi Master Yaddle. It was at this moment that Palpatine accepted him as his new apprentice.
When Dooku joined the Sith, Darth Maul had just been killed by Obi-Wan Kenobi. As such, Palpatine didn’t even waste time replacing Maul with a new apprentice. And it was clear that he was grooming Dooku to become his new apprentice the entire time, as a part of him probably understood that Maul would be killed by the Jedi sooner or later.
Did Dooku hate the Jedi?
When Dooku was a member of the Jedi Order, he loved what the Jedi Order ideally stood for. The Jedi were meant to protect the galaxy’s innocent people while safeguarding the Republic’s peace. However, when he realized that the Republic had become corrupt and that the Jedi were aware of this corruption but opted not to act against it, Dooku started to hate what the Jedi had become.
He didn’t hate the Jedi Order per se. Instead, he merely hated what the Jedi Order and the Jedi Council had become when the Jedi were now willing to become pawns of a corrupt Republic and were not even willing to do anything about the corrupt practices of the senators all over the galaxy.
In that regard, he became disillusioned by the Jedi Order, so he sought to change things in the galaxy. He hated what the Jedi had become, which was why he wanted to destroy the Jedi Order, as it had become a group of politicking Jedi Masters willing to allow the Senate to treat them like lapdogs. And that is why, to some extent, Dooku was a relatable tragic figure who wanted to change things but ended up getting consumed by his desire to destroy the Republic and the Jedi Order.
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