“[…] Ostensibly a democratic monarchy — which first of all, no — Naboo is run by an elected King or Queen. Or is it run by the Naboo Governor? Or is it run by the Royal Advisory Council? Or is it run by the noble families, collectively known as the Royal Houses of Naboo? As of this writing, the whole thing is still very opaque, and while I for one would welcome a political drama about the push/pull between government officials with no term limits and the ever-revolving door of pre-teen monarchs, such a thing would need an easily accessible group of heroes. Luckily, Naboo has just such a group: the Royal Handmaidens of Naboo.
Who Are They?
The right-hand women of the Queen (or I guess King) of Naboo. The Royal Handmaidens perform a myriad of duties from traditional ladies’ maid fare, such as tending to the clothing and personal hygiene of the monarch, to more vigorous activities like physically protecting the Queen, even to the point of death. Handpicked (though by whom it is not said) for their talents and physical resemblance to the current monarch, the Handmaids receive training in both court niceties and hand-to-hand combat. They must learn the intricacies of international politics in order to step into the Queen’s shoes — literally — in order to play the decoy in times of turmoil. They learn marksmanship and manners, and are just as deadly as they are young.
At any point in time, the Queen is served by at least five Handmaids ready to lay down their lives or fetch some snacks. Even after a monarch retires from their public duties, it appears at least two Handmaids are dispatched to protect them for life, similar to Secret Service members of America’s political system. This seemed especially prudent for former Queen Amidala when she became a Galactic Senator, as she was a prime target for assassination. […]
What Stories Could Lucasfilm Tell?
Listen, the Royal Handmaidens of Naboo is a perfectly wrapped gift for Lucasfilm. It has every element necessary for an in-depth Young Adult adaptation, be it on television or in novel form. Tell us about the school for Handmaidens. How do they live? How long and grueling are their hours? How are they selected? Only the best and brightest would be eligible but would parents see it as an honor or a horror to have their daughters picked for what might be a deadly position?
Does the Queen have any input over her own bodyguards or are they selected by committee prior to her ascension? Does each region of Naboo send in potential applicants or does the government send out a council to go throughout the country on their search? Is elevation to Handmaiden seen as a lifelong social climb or a temporary measure that chews up and spits out generation after generation of talented young women? All of these are the backbone of a YA drama similar to anything done by Harry Potter or The Hunger Games.
In a democratic monarchy (still no), what political alliances exist? Would the girls come into their new positions as agents of their families? Would ruthless nobles push their daughters forward in the hopes of bending the ear of the new Queen? Or is the actual monarch so interchangeable that they would rather their Handmaiden daughters charm the Governor and the Advisory Council? Would Handmaidens selected from the populace face social stigma amongst the more elite members of the household or is Naboo beyond such class snobbery? Since in public the Queen’s face is always painted white, shouldn’t bone structure matter more than skin color? What happens if the Handmaidens fall in love — with either someone outside their coterie or one of their own order? Exactly how bound to service are they? Can they quit to live out their lives or is service mandatory regardless of personal wishes?
Do families start guessing who will be elected to the position of Queen and train their daughters from a young age to increase their chances of being selected? Do they train their sons on the off-chance that Naboo will once again elect a King instead of a Queen? How much jockeying goes on behind-the-scenes? For that matter, who exactly gets to vote in Naboo elections? Is it a full democracy or one of the more historically accurate “men who own land are the only true citizens” kind? Because the former adds more wild cards while the latter would allow for the noble houses to essential rig the elections in favor of the candidate they prefer.
All of this creates a bubbling stew of political intrigue and teenage hormones, easy money just sitting on the table should Lucasfilm decide to take it. Give us a Royal Handmaiden finishing school series, Disney. Do it.”