Andor’s Scariest Villain Isn’t Darth Vader

credit: Andor

Very few things are more dangerous than a zealous individual whose beliefs won’t be changed no matter what. After watching Andor on Disney+, the statement that someone like Syril Karn, an individual that was a deputy inspector for a security firm before being busted down to an office worker for the Empire. This is the kind of guy that many would simply walk by and think little to nothing of, another cog in the machine, a person who would be looked at by more ambitious individuals as a waste of resources. But the truth is that he’s far more dangerous than many individuals for one simple reason: he believes in the Empire. The comparison to Darth Vader will no doubt make many people laugh since Syril would be nothing to the dark lord of the Sith if they were compared side by side in terms of the damage they could do. But thinking about it for a moment, some people might get why the comparison is being made in the first place. Both men are dedicated and devoted to the Empire, but the reason why Syril is even more dangerous than Vader is that the Vader is a blunt object that is used to beat people to their knees. Syril is a victim and a symptom of the system to which he belongs. The thing is, he’s been blinded to the depredations of the Empire by his blind devotion. 

credit: Andor

People wilfully put blinders on. 

This is seen in the real world as much as it’s seen in the movies and on TV since people who believe so wholeheartedly in one thing or another will unknowingly or wilfully put on a pair of metaphorical blinders that will keep them from focusing on anything other than what they’ve selected as their focus. Syril is so dedicated to the Empire that he can’t see any other way for his life to turn out, and as a result, he remains dogged in his pursuit of the man that started the trouble, Cassian Andor. As others have surmised, Syril is, unfortunately, hampered by a system that doesn’t work as it should, as his initial release from his security position was the result of his inability to stop investigating the case of the two deceased workers that Cassian left behind. Some might call that dogged determination, but in a system where attracting the least amount of attention is the goal, this is a firing offense. 

Syril’s devotion feels more like a habit. 

There are those who are truly devoted to their tasks and will seek to do the best they can because they genuinely love their job and can’t imagine doing anything else. But with Syril, it does feel as though he’s a creature of habit more than anything. There doesn’t appear to be any love for his work in his demeanor or even in the manner that he goes about his job. Instead, he appears to be slavishly devoted to the idea of order and justice and will follow a case to its completion simply because it follows the tenets that he believes in when it comes to the Empire

credit: Andor

Many of those dedicated to a system will cling to anything when they feel rejected. 

One might think that Syril would have been gutted when he was demoted in such a manner, and in truth, it does feel as though he was. But his tenacity still knows no bounds since he decided to keep digging into the issue of Cassian Andor, even if this was no longer his job or even his responsibility. Syril is the type of individual that believes so wholeheartedly in the Empire that he’s not about to let a demotion knock him off of his path, at least not for long. That kind of fanatical love for a system that cares nothing for its people is a bit terrifying since it is, in some ways, it feels as though many of those who followed the Empire, some of them at least, were great examples of what Stockholm Syndrome can do. Many people saw the Empire as a positive force in the galaxy and would not be told otherwise. 

The danger that comes from men like Syril is more difficult to excise from a system. 

As mentioned above, Syril and his devotion to the Empire is, in effect, kind of like an insidious virus that works its way into the hearts and minds of those who wish to believe that the system they cling to is righteous and just. Once that virus sinks inward and convinces people that what they’re doing and what they’re following is right, it increases the danger for each individual that begins to believe. Syril, on his own, is not such a huge threat. But considering that there are many other individuals within the Empire that are as devoted as he is, there’s no need to wonder why the Empire lasted as long as it did. 

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