So I just got out of the cinema after seeing Rise of Skywalker for the first time. I liked some bits (cute aliens, cool droids, exciting moments) but was mostly disappointed with the film in terms of pacing, writing, and a lot of the decisions. That said, they did almost everything I’ve been saying they would since December 2015 with one exception. Spoilers ahead!
So not everything in Star Wars is cannon anymore but the new films still borrow elements from lesser known stories. I’m on a bit of a roll predicting things like this including the GoT finale and Endgame years before they were released and it’s mostly because I pay a lot of attention to material surrounding the main entries. After I saw The Force Awakens for the first time I was pretty sure I knew how the trilogy would end. 90% of what I told everyone turned out to be in the film but the bit that’s missing helps explain why I thought it would end this way. So rather than show what I predicted first, I’ll start with what was missing so it makes sense why I predicted what I did.
I thought the film would start with a prologue in the past or there would be dialogue somewhere in the film where Palpatine explains to Kylo the following story. I’m going to tell the story that I thought would be mentioned:
There was a Sith lord named Darth Tenebrous. He figured out a way to infect his own midiclorians (I know) to change them into maxi-clorians. He lost the precognitive abilities that most Sith and Jedi have but it was worth it because he achieved his goal. When he died, his midiclorians wouldn’t return to The Force. Instead, they would linger after death and he would be able to live forever.
Darth Tenebrous’ apprentice was Darth Plagueis, a Sith lord with incredible abilities. He could manipulate the force to create new life. While on a mission he saw an opportunity to kill his master and Sith being Sith he brought a roof down on him. It’s easier when your master doesn’t have precognition anymore. Being so in tune with the life and death side of all things Force-related, Plagueis watched his master die and saw his maxiclorians linger after death. Those maxiclorians passed into Plagueis, allowing Tenebrous to achieve his goal of surviving death. Plagueis/Tenebrous was now a being with the ability to create life and cheat death.
In Revenge of the Sith, Palpatine tells Anakin of Darth Plagueis the Wise (you’re very wise when you’re more than one person) and how he could cheat death. Palpatine supposedly murdered Plagueis in his sleep. If the Legends content is used here, it would imply that Tenebrous/Plagueis are Palpatine now, meaning he has all their abilities. It’s important to note that the music that plays during this cannon scene in Revenge of the Sith is Snoke’s Theme from The Force Awakens. When we’re learning about someone who could create life and cheat death, we’re given music to recognise when we see Snoke. Or put another way, when we see Snoke we hear music that reminds us of Palpatine talking about a being that could create life and cheat death.
So all of that could still be cannon because I was right that Palpatine’s plan was to die and flow into a powerful replacement body: Rey. So far so good. Palpatine has been creating lifeforms he could occupy in an emergency (Snokes) but ideally he was waiting for Rey. I even predicted Rey would be related to Palpatine but what I got wrong was that it would be a plain old grandfather-granddaughter relationship.
We all know of the “chosen one”. The Jedi believed the prophecy. I always thought that Palpatine, wanting to be the most powerful being in the galaxy, would try to artificially create the chosen one so that he could flow into them and become the most powerful force user himself. This always seemed pretty straightforward to me when you can live forever by body hopping and have an unprecedented ability to manipulate the force to create life. I thought Palpatine, or perhaps even Plagueis before he was murdered, began a program planting seeds across the galaxy. On harsh worlds they dumped artifically created children who were made to be extremely force sensitive. I thought it was their hope that surviving such harsh worlds would do two things: make them bitter and alone (ensuring their turning to the dark side) and only the strongest would survive making it easier to find the chosen one. Anakin and Rey grew up in slavery or alone on similar harsh planets.
I always thought Rey would be related to Palpatine but only because she was literally created by him. I thought this was confirmed in The Last Jedi when she sees only many copies of herself in the reflection rather than her parents. She was one of those extremely force-sensitive creations that would hopefully bring about a chosen one that could be turned and then used as a new body when the time was right. The reason I thought this would be saved for the finale of this trilogy was because it could also explain Anakin and therefore tie all three trilogies together. Plagueis made Anakin and Palpatine made Rey. So in some ways, Rey is also kind of a Skywalker in the sense that they have the same origins.
So they went with most of that. Palpatine just announces he can pass into other peoples’ bodies without explanation and he does want to live on in Rey but Rey ends up just being his granddaughter. That ruins the part of my theory that would explain Rey and Anakin’s origins neatly at the same time. Oh well.
Apart from that it was as I expected. Hardly any lines for Rose, subtle digs at moments from The Last Jedi (that was so cringey when Luke talks about being respectful to a lightsaber), Poe would become general, Ben would save the day by sacrificing himself allowing his story to end without all the awkward moments of hanging out with the heroes etc. There was stuff I didn’t predict like random new characters but some were so pointless I’m not sure why they were there when other main characters were almost written out entirely.
Meh, the film really didn’t work for me. I just wanted to write a little about what I got wrong.
Happy xmas x