Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

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Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-12 10:54pm

So, to continue on from a productive discussion in the Rogue One thread, I thought I'd make a new topic.

First up: are those blue, red and gold plaques on Imperial officer's chests actually indicators of rank?
Galvatron wrote:Has anyone ever speculated that the badges may not denote rank either and may have been intended to be the equivalent of service ribbons instead?
The answer is, unambiguously, yes:
Image
SOURCE: Star Wars Rebels: The Visual Guide

They may or may not have a secondary purpose for showing decorations, as described by Dr. Saxton on his SWTC site:
NecronLord wrote:Yes. Curtis covers this idea on his page, as well as the idea that gold pins specifically may not represent rank, but rather overwrite blue ones, and represent ideological purity or governate responsibilities. His page is well worth a read.

Main page
Medals and ribbons are awared, as seen in the TIE Fighter computer game, but they are almost never worn by officers on duty. Admiral Giel was an exception, but he was probably following a stubborn and deeply-rooted personal preference. Instead, a piece of insignia known as a rank plaque (as it is named in A New Hope concept art) sits on the breast where ribbons would be kept under any other convention. This badge consists of a rectangular piece of metal fitted with a combination of red, blue or yellow rectangular plastic buttons. Perhaps there is a deliberate implication behind this: rank is symbolically equated with the acculuation of unitary markers of merit. Decoration implies promotion, and promotion implies decoration.
I like that take.
But they're definitely rank indicator plaques in the new canon.

Speaking of the SWTC, for reference I will post his interpretation of the three rank styles he devised, for ease of reference (and a much cleaned up version of what I posted in the Rogue One thread!):
Image
(Fortunately, I had the sense to post this on my Dropbox instead of Imgur, so I can update it as necessary)

Finally, for purposes of my OP, there is the question of, "Did the Empire change rank insignia schemes between Episode IV and Episode V?"
applejack wrote:I don't know if this is even still an issue, but this pretty much puts to rest the idea that the Empire switched over from one badge-rank system to another between ANH and ESB, doesn't it? The ISB Marshal in RO has the same rank scheme as Death Squadron, and would appear to be concurrent with the regional rank system used under Grand Moff Tarkin.

EDIT: Oops... missed Necronlord's post just above... LOL! But, no really, is it still a contentious issue? Because I remember reading about it on Saxton's site and largely agreeing with his assessment.
FWIW, Dr. Saxton never really theorized it was a change so much as a difference between regional commands:
STAR WARS: Imperial Insignia: Officers wrote:Some commentators assume that the different aesthetics reflect a radical change of insignia system at particular time in the history of the Empire. However any move that retained the physical parts comprising the insigia -- the squares and cylinders -- whilst changing their significance would cause widespread confusion amongst personnel. It seems more plausible that the meanings of the basic parts remained the same galaxywide, but the aesthetics of the combination of the parts depended on the regulations of the various regional or central units. Thus Tarkin's leftover forces would have continued with the same insignia as those shown in A New Hope, and the forces brought together in Lord Vader's taskforce probably had the same aesthetic scheme throughout Palpatine's rule. This contention is supported in Vader's Quest, which depicts Coruscant-based officers with insignia in the style that was most common in The Empire Strikes Back even though the comic seems to occur before STAR WARS Holiday Special.
Again, for reference, I'll post his theories on the three styles shown in the table above:
STAR WARS: Imperial Insignia: Officers wrote:Aesthetic 1:
  • Includes insignia used within Lord Vader's taskforce. There are no gold squares, and every red square is automatically matched by a blue. Instead of using blue-red-yellow substitutions to spearate adjacent ranks, the number of cylinders is varied.
Aesthetic 2:
  • The format of the Grand Admirals explicitly couples gold and red squares. Only one example is known to date, but it may be representative of a more general scheme for the officers associated with central Imperial forces. The second remarkable feature of Thrawn's style of insignia is the absence of cylinders on display.
Aesthetic 3:
  • The aesthetic scheme used in regional forces, like Grand Moff Tarkin's. Except for the high joint-service officers, rank plaques have no more than six squares, arranged in only one row. The number of cylinders is fixed depending on broad bands of rank: Junior and middle-ranking officers have two cylinders. Those who in terrestrial terms would be called "star" officers have three cylinders. The cross-service regional military governors have four cylinders; in particular they are the Moffs, Grand Moffs and Supreme Moffs.
Finally, we have the question of the code cylinders. Are they significant in determining rank?
Galvatron wrote:
Elheru Aran wrote:Hm. It's got the same colours and number of plaques as Tarkin's, but oriented differently. No cylinders that I can see. I wonder why. Maybe he just didn't wear them that day.
You know, it's altogether possible that the code cylinders have nothing at all to do with rank.
On this point, AFAIK nothing in the new canon has given us a definitive answer. Nevertheless, consistent with Dr. Saxton's analysis (which AFAICT was based on the movies anyway), NecronLord has this to say:
NecronLord wrote:In the ANH style it's possible I think - but in ESB there are multiple officers who are differentiated by cylinders.

I suspect content creators don't know this, though.
Which is certainly plausible.

So, let's discuss the Imperial rank plaques and what they mean!
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Patroklos » 2016-05-12 11:22pm

ts worth noting that Moff is not a military rank, but rather a civilian rank. It can be held by military personnel, and it doesn't have to be and thus you can have a very high ranking person in general with a lower military rank who can still order around senior military personnel due to his civilian position.

As an example there are many active duty Congressmen in the US, and while they ostensibly act in their subordinate military roles when on active duty they don't actually ever stop outranking their commanders. In a less civil minded government such incongruities are not handled so well. For instance in British (and other monarchies) history there have been many times where royalty have joined the military. While they played the game of the subordinate when it suited their purposes, neither side of the commander/subordinate relationship had any illusions about who was actually superior unless the senior officers were had the personal backing of the brats royal superiors. Often they would be placed under such officers with royal favor for this reason but even then it was the royal favor that kept the scions in line, not the rank of the babysitting officers.

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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by NecronLord » 2016-05-13 05:52am

Patroklos wrote:ts worth noting that Moff is not a military rank, but rather a civilian rank. It can be held by military personnel, and it doesn't have to be and thus you can have a very high ranking person in general with a lower military rank who can still order around senior military personnel due to his civilian position.
Image
Nazi Party ranks, early period
Image
Grand Moff Kaine
The Empire is based stylistically on the nazis; who did in fact have special rank insignia and uniforms for paramilitary governors. Shown left is the Nazi party official uniform of an earlier period from Wiki; Gauleiter, or regional party head (who assumed governate duties as time went on) included. Although a political appointment and not a military role, it is stylistically similar to nazi military uniforms.

John Mollo, who designed the Imperial uniforms, was a published author in the field of historical uniforms almost certainly knew this and intended Tarkin's rank to represent his paramilitary status rather than his pre-existing military appointment as an admiral as it might in say the United States or Britain. It is tempting to suppose Tarkin's rank board may be related to his clone wars admiralcy, but that's a detail invented long after the film and wasn't present in any production materials we know of.

Legends evidence suggests other Grand Moffs shared his insignia, as with Moff Kaine pictured right.

This doesn't contradict what you're saying; but I do believe that the rank pins shown do accompany the appointment of Grand Moff.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Elheru Aran » 2016-05-13 11:10am

Tarkin wasn't an Admiral in the Clone Wars, I don't think. That may have been his origin in 1977, but the series has him as a Captain. He *might* be a Commander by the time of Ahsoka's trial, but that's it.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Lord Revan » 2016-05-13 11:44am

Commander is a lower rank then a (naval) captain, not the other way around, unless you meant commandore which is a 1 star admiral rank.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Elheru Aran » 2016-05-13 11:54am

Errr... we'll go with that :P

Checking Wookieepedia apparently he was promoted to Admiral around the time of Ahsoka's trial, though I don't recall it, but I kinda glossed over the start of that whole thing as the latter episodes were more interesting.

EDIT:

This picture from Ahsoka's trial is possibly relevant to the discussion.

(Linked because it's fecking big:)
http://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/sta ... 1029024417

Note his rank badge-- three red over two blue. For an Admiral. Checking pictures from previous episodes, such as the one where he first appeared (the prison break with Master Even Piell), it's the same insignia, which would make more sense for a Captain.

Perhaps he was so freshly promoted that he hadn't been able to acquire a new badge? (of course the obvious reason is that they reused his model from past episodes and didn't think to change the rank bar before it was too late, but that's not an in-universe reason)

And that brings up another thought-- has there ever been a look at Republic rank badges?
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Elheru Aran » 2016-05-13 12:06pm

Another observation, this one derived from checking the Wulff Yularen article. Apparently he wore the same rank badge (three blue, two red) as an Admiral and Captain.

But the more interesting one:

Image

Is that Yularen behind the younger guy (looks like it)? And they have the same rank badge... but flipped.

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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Patroklos » 2016-05-13 02:11pm

Different service, different scheme? Possible, though it would be confusing using the same shapes and colors.

Something else to think about since we see different numbers of squares on top and bottom rows sometimes it that perhaps rank is only reflected in the top row and the bottom signifies something else? Your MOS? Years of service? You civilian rank relative to mikitary or vice a versa if you hold multiple offices? Your party loyalty rating?

If that's the caseous allowed in the U.S. Military to only wear your top row of ribbons vice the whole thing. It's not standard, you can wear tour top three next to a guy sporting all his chest candy.Are those guys just showing this rank and nothing else?

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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by NecronLord » 2016-05-13 04:02pm

Elheru Aran wrote:Another observation, this one derived from checking the Wulff Yularen article. Apparently he wore the same rank badge (three blue, two red) as an Admiral and Captain.

But the more interesting one:
-
Is that Yularen behind the younger guy (looks like it)? And they have the same rank badge... but flipped.
Dr Saxton makes all those guys colonels - not sure where the admiral designation came from? Captain could be an O-6 (Naval) Captain though.

This is a relevant page, covering Curtis' observations on examples, and covers every officer in the OT I think.

It seems the Naval Captain/Colonel rank is the point at which both systems align, by the by.
█ █ █
█ █ █

█ █ █ █ █ █

█ █ █ █ █ █
Dr Saxton proposes the order doesn't matter as determining rank in the 'flat' pattern - it might even be a matter of personal choice.

Are all shown as captain insignia.
█ █ █ █ █ █
Is also seen for Captain Khurgee, one of the captains on the Death Star; Dr Saxton proposes that he's a Line Captain, the rank above.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by NecronLord » 2016-05-13 04:31pm

It is also worth looking at the Clone Wars to a lesser degree perhaps.
█ █ █
█ █
Admiral (Yularen, Tarkin, others)

█ █
Clone Commanders (Wolfe, many others)
It seems clear that in both systems there's been some severe rank inflation, perhaps being as the Empire is a dictatorship, the intention of this increase in rank slats was to make the ranks simply look more imposing, explaining why they appear in different patterns and so forth? The admiral insignia, as almost all ranks of modern military service are attested in star wars, must convey that his rank is at least the seventh officer rank, so perhaps in this system blue = 2 steps and red = 1 step. If so that would imply that Clone Commander is equivalent to Major or Lt Commander. If Yularen is a full O-10 admiral, then the system cannot use integers, which seems odd, but if he is an O-9 Vice Admiral, then each blue bar may be worth three points; this would fit with him deferring to Skywalker and Kenobi, who are consistently described as 'Generals,' so must have some manner of general rank. O-9 Yularen would also make Clone Commander Wolfe a Lt. Colonel - which is of course equivalent to a naval commander.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-13 04:35pm

Elheru Aran wrote:Note his rank badge-- three red over two blue. For an Admiral. Checking pictures from previous episodes, such as the one where he first appeared (the prison break with Master Even Piell), it's the same insignia, which would make more sense for a Captain.

Perhaps he was so freshly promoted that he hadn't been able to acquire a new badge? (of course the obvious reason is that they reused his model from past episodes and didn't think to change the rank bar before it was too late, but that's not an in-universe reason)

And that brings up another thought-- has there ever been a look at Republic rank badges?
Every Admiral in the series wore the same badge. But then all of the Clone Naval Officers wore the same badge as well, even when some were clearly subordinate officers and others were ship Captains. Animation limitation, most likely: they picked a model and stuck with it. Same for Tarkin, who was made to look the same as the other non-clone senior officers, despite clearly holding two different ranks when we see him.
NecronLord wrote:Dr Saxton makes all those guys colonels - not sure where the admiral designation came from? Captain could be an O-6 (Naval) Captain though.

This is a relevant page, covering Curtis' observations on examples, and covers every officer in the OT I think.

It seems the Naval Captain/Colonel rank is the point at which both systems align, by the by.
█ █ █
█ █ █

█ █ ██ █ █

█ █ ██ █ █
Dr Saxton proposes the order doesn't matter as determining rank in the 'flat' pattern - it might even be a matter of personal choice.
Yeah. FWIW Admiral Titus from "Rebels" does have a rank badge seen in filmed Star Wars, it's just flipped. This guy also had four red and two gold: http://www.theforce.net/swtc/Pix/vidi4/swhs07.gif

Although as you can probably tell, he was from the Holiday Special which was already non-canon before the Purge. :P

In other examples, we do have an illustration of Tarkin as a Moff, and his insignia is broadly similar to Saxton's proposed insignia, except with five columns instead of six. Still, it maintains the blue over red, with two gold on the end schema, so it's pretty close:
Image

There is also Rae Sloan from one of the "Kanan" comics (which places it at or before "Rebels") who Wookieepedia tells me is a Vice Admiral at this time. Her badge is pretty consistent with what Dr. Saxton's Aesthetic 1 says a Vice Admiral badge should look like:
Image

Five red over five blue certainly matches, and while it's unclear how many rank cylinders she has, it looks like four if we consider the usual method of wearing them (starting on the left shoulder, then right, then left, then right again) which makes her Rank 5 Class 4, which is consistent with Dr. Saxton's scheme as a 'lower tier' VADM.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by NecronLord » 2016-05-13 04:40pm

RogueIce wrote:In other examples, we do have an illustration of Tarkin as a Moff, and his insignia is broadly similar to Saxton's proposed insignia, except with five columns instead of six. Still, it maintains the blue over red, with two gold on the end schema, so it's pretty close:
Snip
I'll raise you filmed Star Wars there.

Image

Wayne Pygram as Moff Tarkin, RotS.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-13 04:44pm

NecronLord wrote:
RogueIce wrote:In other examples, we do have an illustration of Tarkin as a Moff, and his insignia is broadly similar to Saxton's proposed insignia, except with five columns instead of six. Still, it maintains the blue over red, with two gold on the end schema, so it's pretty close:
Snip
I'll raise you filmed Star Wars there.

[Snip ~NL]

Wayne Pygram as Moff Tarkin, RotS.
I completely forgot about that picture, thanks.

Granted it's in the early days of the transition - obviously they made the colored squares a bit more prominent - but yeah, it's wholly consistent with what we see later.

Like I said, pretty close to Dr. Saxton's interpretation, and really it being five-wide instead of six-wide isn't a big deal anyway. 'Moff' is a pretty independent rank compared to the rest of the chain of command anyway, unlike say the transition from Vice Admiral to Fleet Admiral would be.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by NecronLord » 2016-05-13 04:50pm

What do you make of the Clone Wars ranks? Obviously we don't see so many because of the way character models were done; but it seems clear that if Yularen was an admiral with five squares, the Republic conveyed the same information in less pins.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Lord Revan » 2016-05-13 05:01pm

NecronLord wrote:What do you make of the Clone Wars ranks? Obviously we don't see so many because of the way character models were done; but it seems clear that if Yularen was an admiral with five squares, the Republic conveyed the same information in less pins.
possiblity that republic system was experimental as they had not had a galaxy wide military for a long time, judicial corps being more a police force then actual military?
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-13 05:34pm

NecronLord wrote:What do you make of the Clone Wars ranks? Obviously we don't see so many because of the way character models were done; but it seems clear that if Yularen was an admiral with five squares, the Republic conveyed the same information in less pins.
Hard to say, mostly because if the lesser Clone Officer ranks are all identical (I'd have to review TCW in more detail, but I suspect it's all one character model like the faceless Imperial Lieutenants of "Rebels"), we don't know what rank they're supposed to represent, so there's no real comparison; and as mentioned before, Tarkin wore the same badge despite holding clearly different ranks, so we can't use him, either.

I mean yeah, same information in less pins than the Empire, but that could just be an aesthetic thing. Take just the three over two example and there's tons of combinations:
█ █ █
█ █
(as seen)

█ █
█ █

█ █
█ █

█ █
And so on. Heck for all we know there's three-over-one variations, and for the lesser Clone Officers we could have two or even single squares:
█ █ █


With any combination of colors you want, even just maintaining that red is superior (and thus always to the left) to blue, there's plenty of combinations we could, in theory, come up with. It's impossible to say how it works with only two examples, and one of those examples (█ █) not telling us what it actually means so we can't establish any kind of relationship with it to the Admiral badges.

I don't know, maybe if there are decent pictures of the bridge crew of that Venator during the end of RotS? I doubt they changed the rank insignia that quickly; yeah Tarkin's insignia is new but that's easier than a total overhaul of existing rank insignia.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-13 05:52pm

But let's give this a shot. Assuming the red-red-blue is equivalent to a Naval Captain, we can work from there and it actually manages to fit pretty nicely with the known Admiral insignia. (Known insignia BOLD and UNDERLINED)
█ █ █
█ █
Admiral

█ █ █

Vice Admiral

█ █ █

Rear Admiral

█ █ █
Commodore

█ █
Captain

█ █
Commander

█ █ █
Lt. Commander

█ █
Lieutenant


Lieutenant J.G.

█ █
Ensign


Officer Cadet (assuming non-clone junior officer training)
Of course this is all theory and a straight guess at how the "pattern" would go, but it does fit assuming Clone Commander (Wolfe, as mentioned above) is equivalent to a Naval Captain/RL Colonel rank.
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This is the price of war,
We rise with noble intentions,
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The war continues on..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, We Are All One (Medieval 2: Total War)
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Darth Tedious » 2016-05-14 10:18am

There's been a fair bit of discussion on this topic on the 501st fora over the years, from memory I'm pretty sure the IOC had figured out meanings for each rank which at least meshed with what we see in the OT

One thing I do remember clearly is the cylinders not being related to rank, as everybody from TIE pilots to gunnery crew to the scanning crew that goes aboard the Falcon wears them
General assumption seems to favour them as being an electronic equivalent to keys, which would make sense though we never see them used as such
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-14 01:38pm

Darth Tedious wrote:There's been a fair bit of discussion on this topic on the 501st fora over the years, from memory I'm pretty sure the IOC had figured out meanings for each rank which at least meshed with what we see in the OT
Would you happen to have that handy, by chance? I'd be interested to see their methodology.
Darth Tedious wrote:One thing I do remember clearly is the cylinders not being related to rank, as everybody from TIE pilots to gunnery crew to the scanning crew that goes aboard the Falcon wears them
General assumption seems to favour them as being an electronic equivalent to keys, which would make sense though we never see them used as such
It got brought up in the Rogue One thread and I forgot to port it here, but as NecronLord pointed out: that can definitely work for the ANH style ranks, but for ESB ranks it's problematic. A Naval Lieutenant is a 2x2 plaque, while a Naval Captain is a 3x3 plaque. The only way you can possibly have any intermediate ranks between the two is with using the code cylinders, because there's no other obvious ways to tell the difference. They do of course serve a practical purpose (I don't think it was really assumed otherwise; Dr. Saxton always noted that at least, since we're kind of using his analysis as a baseline), but for the ESB style they also seem to be an indicator of rank alongside the plaques themselves.

I know back in Legends it was the EGW (I think, one of those Essential Guides) that came out with the 'definitive' rank chart...and it was a mess of meanings and terms and assigning like three different titles/ranks/positions to single plaques, having a title/rank/position stretching across two different plaques and seemed to rely on everyone having some kind of HUD and transponder implanted in them (or being fucking psychic) to have any idea what actual rank anyone was at any given time. To be fair, it probably was necessary because Legends was a Goddamn mess when it came to that (and in a lot of other ways lol) so trying to rationalize across all of it was never going to end well.

Hopefully the new canon will do better, and they'll come up with if nothing else some kind of internal 'rank chart' to guide artists and authors when it comes to portraying and describing a rank badge - mostly for artists TBH, writers can just get around it by saying "Captain's insignia" and leaving it at that - so we'll get some consistency. But only time will tell.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Darth Tedious » 2016-05-14 02:10pm

I'll have to go looking and see if I can retrieve a link, will need to do it on something more powerful than the phone I currently hold

If I recall right, their method was did not assume that ranks worked the same way as IRL, but it's been a while

Any thoughts on Sandtrooper pauldrons?
501st have them listed as
Orange = squad leader (regardless of rank)
White = 2ic (possibly sergeant or lieutenant)
Black = grunts

It seems to fit, the only time I think we see two orange pauldrons at once is when they're on their way to stop that ship and blast them
And "look sir, droids" certainly suggests white is subordinate to orange
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-14 02:21pm

Darth Tedious wrote:I'll have to go looking and see if I can retrieve a link, will need to do it on something more powerful than the phone I currently hold

If I recall right, their method was did not assume that ranks worked the same way as IRL, but it's been a while
That is, of course, a possibility.
Darth Tedious wrote:Any thoughts on Sandtrooper pauldrons?
501st have them listed as
Orange = squad leader (regardless of rank)
White = 2ic (possibly sergeant or lieutenant)
Black = grunts

It seems to fit, the only time I think we see two orange pauldrons at once is when they're on their way to stop that ship and blast them
And "look sir, droids" certainly suggests white is subordinate to orange
That's generally the gist of it. "Rebels" adds red pauldrons, which are definitely a leadership and command position. The other colors are also represented and seem to follow that scheme.

There is something to say that they might also indicate a more 'elite' form of trooper than the norm, with what we've seen in "Rebels" - they will wear them when there's no need for an external indicator of rank, and plenty of them will never wear them even when there is some differing seniority going on between troopers, and some will wear it while others do not in the same group.. It appears they've taken the Field stormtrooper idea from JK and MOTS and brought it into new canon.
Last edited by RogueIce on 2016-05-14 02:23pm, edited 1 time in total.
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The war continues on..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, We Are All One (Medieval 2: Total War)
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Galvatron » 2016-05-14 04:13pm

RogueIce wrote:First up: are those blue, red and gold plaques on Imperial officer's chests actually indicators of rank?
Galvatron wrote:Has anyone ever speculated that the badges may not denote rank either and may have been intended to be the equivalent of service ribbons instead?
The answer is, unambiguously, yes:
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I meant in the days long before LFL started using the old EU as their source material. I realize that they're officially rank badges now.

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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by RogueIce » 2016-05-14 05:33pm

Galvatron wrote:I meant in the days long before LFL started using the old EU as their source material. I realize that they're officially rank badges now.
I think yes? I vaguely recall reading somewhere that production notes indicated them as such. And of course it seems awfully coincidental that when Piett was promoted to Ozzel's rank he assumed the identical insignia. If they were merely service ribbons, why bother? I don't think Vader is the sort to indulge in such things. It pretty much had to indicate rank at that point, I'd say.
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This is the price of war,
We rise with noble intentions,
And we risk all that is pure..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, Forever (Rome: Total War)

"On and on, through the years,
The war continues on..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, We Are All One (Medieval 2: Total War)
"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear." - Ambrose Redmoon
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Elheru Aran » 2016-05-14 05:42pm

RogueIce wrote:
Galvatron wrote:I meant in the days long before LFL started using the old EU as their source material. I realize that they're officially rank badges now.
I think yes? I vaguely recall reading somewhere that production notes indicated them as such. And of course it seems awfully coincidental that when Piett was promoted to Ozzel's rank he assumed the identical insignia. If they were merely service ribbons, why bother? I don't think Vader is the sort to indulge in such things. It pretty much had to indicate rank at that point, I'd say.
Presumably nobody either thought or cared very much about them when they made ANH. They were a bit of military trimming, that was all. Hence the turned-around badges on the ISB guys and what not. Then they made a ridiculous amount of money and went 'oh shit we need to establish some consistency cause sequels' and buckled down. That's the most likely explanation IMO, anyway.
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Re: Imperial Rank Insignia Discussion

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2016-05-14 05:53pm

I always assumed the different insignia were for different services personally. Since we only see one scheme in ESB and ROTJ, but (with the exception of Jerjerrod) we only see line officers in the Imperial Starfleet it seems easy enough. And even Jerjerrod can be explained that he's wearing the rank he held before becoming Moff because he's a professional or something.
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