Andor’s scariest villain shares surprising Better Call Saul parallel

The actor behind Andor's most terrifying Star Wars villain has shared that they were inspired by a character within Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad.

Diego Luna as Cassian Andor

Denise Gough, who plays the ISB officer Dedra Meero in the new Star Wars series Andor, has said that her Star Wars villain shares a surprising connection to an iconic character from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul. Gough portrayed her Star Wars character Dedra Meero in Andor season 1, and will return to the role with Andor season 2.

Her performance, and her character’s story, were both highlights of the new and celebrated sci-fi series. In the show, Dedra Meero was an ambitious agent of the Galactic Empire who made it her mission to find Cassian Andor and Luthen Rael after uncovering their links to the Rebellion.

While it was easy to root for Dedra Meero at first, it became increasingly clear that the character was actually the scariest villain Star Wars has created in a long time. She was ruthless, cold, and utterly determined to succeed. Because she worked for the evil Galactic Empire, that made her a force to be reckoned with and a danger to Cassian Andor.

Now, speaking to IndieWire, Gough has reflected on which other fictional characters she sought inspiration from for Dedra Meero. And, surprisingly, she mentioned Giancarlo Espositio’s portrayal of drug lord Gustavo Fring as a big parallel. Gough said “I just always think that scene with Gus Fring before he murders that guy, when he takes his shirt off first and hangs it up. That’s very Dedra.”

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The moment Gough is referring to is when Gus Fring murders his own henchman Victor at the beginning of season 4. It was a display of his ruthless violence, and his ability to detach himself in a way that does have similarities to Dedra Meero.

In fact, the comparison between the demeanour of the two is generally very apt, and it’s clear that Dedra Meero’s confidence, professionalism, and ice-cold front does bear a resemblance to the famous villain from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.

For more on Andor, check out our guide to the Andor cast of characters including Mon Mothma and Syril Karn. Or, for more villains take a look at our explainers on Darth Vader, Emperor Palpatine, and the best Star Wars bounty hunters.