Warning: main SPOILERS for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker are forward!
Following Star Wars: The Force Awakens, lots of the dialogue and hypothesis centered on the id of the mysterious Supreme Leader Snoke, performed by Andy Serkis. One of probably the most outstanding theories was that Snoke was in actual fact the legendary Darth Plagueis, spoken of with each reverence and scorn by Sheev Palpatine in his iconic ‘Tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise’ speech to Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.
That idea, together with so many others about Snoke’s id, was dashed when he was abruptly reduce down in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. With Snoke useless, Emperor Palpatine was introduced again as the ultimate boss of the Skywalker Saga for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and it was revealed that Snoke was in actual fact a clone puppet underneath Darth Sidious’ management the entire time.
The response to each the Emperor’s return and the execution of that return in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has been fairly blended. I definitely really feel that means in regards to the film, however after processing it and listening to one of many the reason why the Emperor was introduced again, I’ve realized one other route this movie may have gone as an alternative of utilizing the Emperor that may have averted many of those issues and criticisms.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker ought to have made Snoke be Darth Plagueis.
Why Emperor Palpatine Was Brought Back
Before we get into how bringing again Snoke and making him Darth Plagueis would have labored, it’s value digging into why Palpatine was introduced again and the methods by which that did and didn’t work in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
Let’s be sincere, loads has been stated about why Emperor Palpatine was introduced again within the remaining movie of the Sequel Trilogy following his obvious demise in Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, and there are good factors. The macro concept that that is all one nine-episode story and Darth Sidious is the overarching villain all through makes thematic sense. And it’s cool to suppose that like so many nice villains, even once you suppose you’ve defeated him, you actually haven’t.
However, it has additionally been stated that bringing again Emperor Palpatine within the Sequel Trilogy was at all times a part of the plan. If you imagine that, or that there was even an actual plan for this trilogy to start with, I’ve obtained some good lakeside property on Alderaan to promote you. If there was a plan, it undoubtedly wasn’t one which was communicated and enforced throughout the three movies.
The actual purpose I feel that Emperor Palpatine was introduced again is the explanation put forth by Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’s co-writer Chris Terrio: they wished to redeem Kylo Ren and that was a lot trickier to do following Snoke’s demise in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. At the top of The Last Jedi, Snoke is useless and Kylo Ren is basically the primary villain within the galaxy.
That’s superb and really attention-grabbing, but when the plan is finally to redeem this character, it makes issues reasonably sophisticated. Hux is the one different actual villain within the Sequel Trilogy at that time, and he was basically a punching bag in The Last Jedi, so it might be laborious to take him significantly as a menace after that.
Sure, it’s fully potential a author may have give you a means for Kylo Ren to be each the massive dangerous in The Rise of Skywalker and nonetheless finish the movie along with his redemption, however it might have been tough. That’s what Emperor Palpatine gives, the evil that may carry out the sunshine in Ben Solo and act as a conduit to his redemption. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker used Emperor Palpatine to perform this, however the identical may have been achieved with Snoke returning as Darth Plagueis.
How Darth Plagueis Could Have Worked
So how would which have labored? Well on the finish of The Last Jedi, Kylo Ren is seemingly the massive dangerous within the galaxy, absolutely turned to the Dark Side with nobody to face in his means. In the start of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Emperor Palpatine shortly returns and Supreme Leader Kylo Ren’s rule is straight away in jeopardy. But what if the movie began otherwise?
What if Kylo Ren was once more haunted by that voice in his head that guided a lot of his flip to the Dark Side all through his life? Perhaps, like in The Rise of Skywalker, Kylo Ren went on a quest to hunt out the reality. Only this time, he finds his grasp Snoke as soon as once more within the land of the residing. It would have been a surprising second, after which, by means of a little bit of expository dialogue, Snoke may have lastly revealed his true id.
The Dark Lord of the Sith may have stated one thing about how Kylo just isn’t the primary apprentice to kill him, however like Darth Sidious earlier than him, he too has failed as a result of he has conquered demise. Snoke may then reveal that he’s Darth Plagueis. And identical to that, we uncover who Snoke was, perceive that he’s the massive dangerous of this movie and understand that this can be a villain that even demise can not defeat, establishing the dire stakes for the Skywalker Saga’s remaining chapter.
I don’t have particular story beats in thoughts for this alternate model of Episode IX, however determining how one can kill an enemy that may’t be killed would have been the hunt the heroes would have launched into. I think about that Kylo may have struggled with Snoke’s return, feeling defeated and subservient to him earlier than lastly discovering braveness in the long run, simply as his grandfather did in Return of the Jedi.
Lots of the success of Snoke’s return and the Darth Plagueis reveal, as is the case with any story level, would have relied on the implementation and execution. But if it was carried out effectively, I feel that making Snoke be Darth Plagueis in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker would have served a wide range of features whereas avoiding lots of the perceived issues that arose from the return of Emperor Palpatine.
The Advantages Of Bringing In Plagueis
The first and most blatant benefit of bringing again Snoke in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and making him Darth Plagueis, is that it might have addressed the problem that seemingly pressured Palpatine’s return: Kylo Ren’s redemption. The inclusion of Snoke/Darth Plagueis in The Rise of Skywalker would have facilitated Ben Solo’s redemption, however it might have carried out a lot greater than that.
One of the overarching criticisms of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has been the dearth of clarification for Emperor Palpatine’s return and the way he survived his demise in Return of the Jedi. Revealing that Snoke is Plagueis and bringing him again to life would have include a built-in clarification because of our prior information of the character from Revenge of the Sith. Darth Plagueis had the power to forestall those he cherished from dying, and presumably this mastery over demise is what allowed him to return.
Sure, we could not have identified the precise mechanism of this energy. That’s one thing the movie may discover, however his return wouldn’t have been so abrupt and wouldn’t have felt fairly as very like a ‘break glass in case of emergency’ scenario as Palpy’s did.
That’s as a result of Snoke had already been established within the Sequel Trilogy, and in what little we noticed of him, he was a scary, menacing and extremely highly effective villain. Our lack of knowledge in regards to the character would have allowed Darth Plagueis to be a suitable reply to the thriller of Snoke that wouldn’t require leaping by means of a ton of narrative and logical hoops.
If he have been Darth Plagueis as so many followers theorized, his return would make complete sense. And whereas that is simply conjecture, I feel that Snoke’s return would have required a bit much less exposition and legwork on the a part of the movie, which in flip would have allowed it extra room to breathe to inform its story. This is in distinction to the breakneck tempo we obtained as Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker raced to inform a number of films value of story in a two-hour 22-minute runtime.
Another criticism of Palpatine’s return is that it amounted to little greater than fan service. While I usually reject that specific criticism as a result of it’s usually used to explain adhering to the established narrative and tenets of a narrative, I perceive why some folks felt that bringing ol’ Sheev again was simply low-cost fan service.
You may say that Darth Plagueis would have additionally been fan service that appealed particularly to Prequel followers, however I don’t suppose it’s the identical factor. For one factor, Snoke was new to the Sequel Trilogy and never a recycled character from the earlier movies.
Bringing the character again to life and making him Darth Plagueis may have been the kind of fan service that offers audiences one thing new they haven’t seen earlier than, whereas nonetheless being a geek-out second for Star Wars die-hards. It would have additionally tied the Sequels to the Prequels and introduced the complete Saga collectively whereas sustaining and honoring Anakin Skywalker’s sacrifice in Return of the Jedi.
It’s Not A Perfect Solution
There are admittedly some drawbacks and questions that may include bringing Snoke again in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and making him Darth Plagueis. It could possibly be seen as a center finger to Rian Johnson’s selections in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, however you possibly can make the argument that the latter two chapters of the Sequel Trilogy are already each center fingers to the movies that preceded them. That’s what occurs with an absence of a plan and clashing artistic visions.
I feel there could have additionally been an issue with Darth Plagueis being a bit too inside baseball for normal audiences, who could not have remembered a single dialog from a movie that got here out 14 years in the past. Then there’s the query of whether or not or not you reveal Plagueis within the trailers the way in which The Rise of Skywalker did with Palpatine. I feel possibly you could possibly have proven Snoke’s return within the advertising and marketing, however not his id. That would have been saved for the movie itself.
This is simply an concept I’m throwing on the market, and I admit that Darth Plagueis doesn’t remedy for each downside that individuals had with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. But I feel it’s an attention-grabbing means the movie may have gone that may have resulted in a barely much less divided response from followers and critics, whereas nonetheless being a creatively satisfying story and a becoming finish to the Skywalker Saga.
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