Wilhuff Tarkin, served as an Admiral aboard the Republic Navy during the Clone Wars and fought alongside the Jedi such as Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Ahsoka Tano. He had strong views such as disagreeing with the Jedi serving as generals in the conflict. He was a good and trusted friend of Chancellor Palpatine and became friends with Anakin Skywalker after Skywalker rescued him from the Citadel. After the Republic was transformed into the Empire, Tarkin immediately joined the ranks and was promoted to "Governor" of the Outer Rim.
Governor Over the Outer Rim
According to Sabine, Tarkin had many farmers on Lothal kicked off their farms when the Empire wanted their land and anyone who tried to fight back got arrested for treason. As a result, the local farmers built a new town to live in which they named after Governor himself.
Hera used him for a cover story when she told the commander of an Imperial Transport ship that they got paid by him for the bounty of a Wookiee Prisoner: as part of a plan to get on board and rescue Wookiee prisoners.
Spark of Rebellion
Mission to Capture the Rebels
Tarkin made a personal visit to Lothal to deal with the ongoing rebel cell after numerous failed attempts by Agent Kallus, Minister Tua and The Grand Inquisitor, and upon his arrival immediately reprimanded them for their ongoing failures. Despite Minister Tua's claims that the cell's leader was a Jedi, Tarkin chastised her for this belief as from his point of view, the Jedi were all dead and he intended to seek out this "criminal" and show that he was not what he claimed to be.
To ensure better results, he had The Grand Inquisitor execute Cumberlayne Aresko and Myles Grint for their continuous failures to put down the rebel cell, illustrating that their weakness in the eyes of the public inspired hope and could threaten the stability of the Empire. His demonstration proved effective as it prompted the Inquisitor and Kallus to successfully capture Kanan Jarrus at an imperial communication tower. Tarkin arrived in person at the tower-clad in Imperial Officer Battle Armor-to bring the rebel into custody and interrogate him. There he ordered his men to destroy the tower to prevent the rebels from broadcasting their message to the public. He belittled the captured rebel, claiming Kanan didn't know how to win a war, but he himself did.
Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin tortures Kanan Jarrus with the help of the Inquisitor and Agent Kallus. Tarkin then decides on taking Jarrus to Mustafar where he will talk.
Rebel Attack on Mustafar
Grand Moff Tarkin was commanding his Imperial Star Destroyer, the Sovereign when all the power was lost. He ordered reinforcements. Later, Kassius Konstantine explained that for his safety they should evacuate. Tarkin escaped the exploding Star Destroyer in a shuttle and arrived at Lothal where Agent Kallus told him that there was unrest all over the planet. Tarkin told him that the Emperor had an alternative solution, Darth Vader.
The Siege of Lothal
Some time later, he was displeased with Minister Tua's failures to capture the rebels, having taken the destruction of his Star Destroyer personally. He then demanded that Tua visit him to account for her failures, a message that was delivered by Darth Vader. Maketh Tua was supposed to meet Tarkin off the planet, however the minister called the rebels to infiltrate Lothal to save herself, causing the death of Tua.
Raid at Reklam Station
Six months after Vader's mission to Malachor, Tarkin then spoke with Governor Arihnda Pryce about securing Lothal. He also spoke with her about the recent rebel attack on Naraka's prison. Tarkin listened to her fears about the rebels and how they threaten the Empire. Tarkin agreed with her, but assured her that Lord Vader has taken care of the rebel's Jedi leadership. He then asked Pryce what the Empire should do. Pryce requested for the Seventh Fleet to deployed to Lothal due to Admiral Kassius Konstantine's status as a politician then a career officer. Tarkin then granted her request for the Seventh Fleet and it's commander, Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Tarkin then attended a briefing between Pryce, Kallus, and Konstantine. Konstantine attempted to convince Tarkin that Pryce was overestimating the rebels and did not constued a larger threat to the Empire. However, Thrawn entered and believed that the rebels threat should remain that way. Tarkin then introduce Thrawn and told of them of Thrawn promotion to Grand Admiral following his victory over the Batonn's insurgents. At this briefing, Tarkin asked Thrawn of what he thought of Pryce's theory about the Rebels. After reviewing the information about the rebels' rescue of Hondo Ohnaka from Naraka Prison, Thrawn concluded that the rebels next target would the Y-Wing Starfighters at Reklam Station.
Conversation with Grand Admiral Thrawn
In Thrawn's Office, Thrawn accompanied by Kassius Konstantine and Arihnda Pryce to discuss the rebels. Thrawn, then speaks with Grand Moff Tarkin's via Hologram. Thrawn informs him, that Phoenix Squadron and Jan Dodonna's unit plan to unite and attack the Lothal Imperial Factory on Lothal. Despite Tarkin's initial skepticism while Arihnda Pryce thinks a coordinated rebel attack is unlikely but Thrawn responds he has been waiting for this moment and Tarkin orders him to capture their leaders so they can make examples of them.
Personality and Traits
Tarkin was a hardened, cold and power-hungry individual. While serving as an officer of the Republic during the Clone Wars, he fell into favor with Chancellor Palpatine and eventually rose to a position of power in the Empire second only to the Emperor and Darth Vader. He commanded enormous respect and fear from his underlings and made no qualms about executing anyone he viewed as a liability to the Empire. Tarkin prized victory at any cost to ensure the stability of the Empire and increasing his own power. As a veteran of the Clone Wars he was also unafraid to enter the battlefield personally.
Tarkin was a cold-hearted man who did whatever it took to secure the Empire's control of the galaxy and any promises of mercy he made were meaningless as he would break his word if it suited his purposes. He was willing to execute anyone who failed or even kill innocent civilians in order to make an example and prove a point to the galaxy of the Empire's authority.
He apparently had a petty side, as he seemed to blame Maketh Tua for the Lothal Rebels' actions leading to the destruction of his star destroyer, and hold her accountable for his own failures.
During the Clone Wars, Tarkin had little respect or patience for the Jedi, believing them to be ineffective at leading the clone army to victory (despite numerous examples to the contrary) due to the moral restrictions of the Jedi Code preventing them from doing whatever it took to win. Even after being saved on no more than half a dozen occasions by Jedi, he still treated them with disdain and made a point of diminishing their authority in Republic military affairs. When addressing the Council about the apparent treason of Ahsoka Tano, he disrespectfully dismissed the opinions of the Jedi on the matter and their attempts at ensuring she would receive a fair trial in accordance with Jedi tradition. When Ahsoka was expelled and brought before the Republic court, Tarkin served as the prosecution and vowed to ensure both her conviction and execution. When the Jedi were massacred as a result of Order 66, Tarkin believed them extinct and refused to acknowledge Kanan's abilities or Force potential, even when confronted with evidence that he was indeed a Jedi. Though putting little faith in the existence or power of the Force, he respected the Emperor and his underlings nonetheless.
- Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion (Mentioned only)
- "Call to Action" (First appearance)
- "Rebel Resolve"
- "Fire Across the Galaxy"
- Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow
- "Secret Cargo" (Mentioned only)
- "Zero Hour" (Appears as hologram)