If you are new to the Star Wars franchise, you may or may not have heard of the character named Doctor Aphra. If you’re unfamiliar with this archeologist, don’t worry, we got you covered. In this article, we will briefly explain when she was first introduced into the Star Wars Universe and who she is.

Meet Doctor Chellie Lona Aphra

Doctor Chellie Lona Aphra was created by Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca. She makes her first appearance in Star Wars: Dark Vader #3 back in 2015. Interestingly enough, Kieron Gillen said that Aphra was conceived as an archaeological antithesis of Indiana Jones. Chellie Aphra’s love of archeology stemmed from her father, Korin Aphra, who had a deep fascination with discovering relics and taking in knowledge of the galaxy. However, her father’s obsession in his work drove her mother Lona Aphra away, taking young Chellie with her to a planet called Arbiflux on the Outer Rim.

Things took a devastating turn when raiders struck their home and killed Chellie’s mother. After this horrific event, she was sent back to live with her father. Traumatized from her mother’s untimely death and outraged that her father seemingly abandoned them in favor of his work, Chellie ended up setting fire to their home. Her goal was to destroy as much of her father’s research as she could.

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Archeologist in the Making

Despite her troubled past and upbringing, Chellie Aphra still had aspirations of being an archeologist. She attended the University of Bar’leth, which is located on the planet Bar’leth in the Core Worlds where she pursued a bachelor’s degree in archeology. She was a very troublesome student, and was often a headache for one of her professors named Sava Toob-Nix. It was in his classes that she met Sana Starros, another character with her own series.

While trying to receive her doctorate, she ventured to planet Boothi XII in order to find any evidence of a precurser race in a secret vault. Unfortunately, her findings come up empty. When she reports it to Sava Toob-Nix, he chides her for her wasted efforts. This ensued in Aphra talking back to him, but instead of insulting her, he shows her a deep secret he’s been hiding.

He takes her to a secret room in the university where he is hiding an illegal mind-controlling species known as the abersyn symbiotes. Aphra sets out on the task of ratting him out. However, it would be difficult because of her poor reputation in the university compared to his respected one. She enlists the help of Sana Starros to hatch a plan.

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She and Sana are able to splice into the secret room without setting off any alarms and safely removing the dormant abersyn symbiots. She returns to the vault she tried to explore back to the vault on Boothi XII and places the symbiotes in it. By doing so, they make it appear that the symbiotes had been left untouched for thousands of years. Aphra publishes these “findings” and it was hailed as the greatest find in centuries. Aphra blackmails Sava to give her her doctorate and he angrily complies, knowing he’s unable to do anything about it.

Enlisted by Darth Vader Himself

Aphra incidently set herself in the middle of Darth Vader’s path after reactivating droideka security droids from the Clone Wars era. She sells them to pirates that operate in the Outer Rim. These pirates, however, gained the attention of the Galactic Empire, meaning Vader was going to hunt them down and eradicate them personally. When he discovered that that purchased droidekas were the work of Aphra, he was highly impressed and sought her out to secretly recruit her.

Aphra was hired to steal an ancient droid personality matrix known as Triple-Zero. Aboard the ship called the Ark Angel, Aphra attempts to steal it when she runs into none other than Darth Vader. As mentioned previously, he was interested in recruiting her and she accepts, saying that she is a huge fan of him. Together they are able to retrieve the personality chip and make their way out. Later, Aphra asks what Vader really wanted from her and it is revealed that he was demoted by Emperor Palpatine. Therefore, he plans on building private and secret resources without Palpatine’s, knowledge and Aphra jumps at the opportunity to help.

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Doctor Chellie Lona Aphra’s story is a long and dynamic one and we briefly scratched the surface. What do you think of this troublemaking archeologist? If you’re interested in diving deeper into Doctor Aphra’s story you can start with reading the first comic of her series that’s available here. If you want more Star Wars content, click here.

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