So, I’m re-reading the Timothy Zahn ‘Heir to the Empire’ trilogy, and I was once again struck by how good it felt to be reading a Star Wars book where there was a real, believable villain who actually knew how to plan and was actually a threat.
This article probably says it best: that Thrawn was a complex and charismatic enough character that you could actually see threatening the New Republic, and able to conquer the galaxy on his own merits.
The new Kylo Ren & sundry associated characters just don’t seem anywhere near as competent. (Just so needlessly destructive.) You have the feeling that Thrawn would conquer them in the matter of weeks. [sigh.] Anyways, here’s hoping that the new Star Wars movies have people on both sides (or even multiple sides?!?) who have reasonable motivations and who are each striving from a place of competence.