Hey it’s time for the the Star Wars Blogathon!
And I decided to write about a Star Wars twist I very much liked.
So…Palpatine’s return in The Rise of Skywalker was… a point of contention among most Star Wars fans, I know. And some of the criticisms I agree with! It wasn’t executed well at all. (If you have to both read the novelisation and play Fortnite to get the whole story, something’s gone wrong.) But…
Palpatine actually being there in the first place? In terms of the overall Star Wars story, it makes sense!
Palps has always been the Big Bad of Star Wars. He’s not really a person in a way, more just the embodiment of evil in the world. (Sometimes I think of him as the Star Wars equivalent of the One Ring.) But the prequel trilogy makes pretty clear that the Jedi allowed that embodiment of evil to rise, via neglect, ignorance, arrogance or all three. Like – the individual Jedi are great people, but their system is so very broken. They don’t free slaves, they don’t intervene where they should, they don’t understand Anakin’s connection to his mother… they’re part of the reason for Anakin’s fall. Not on purpose obviously, but the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
This gifset sums it up really well I thought:
And in the movies – I’m not counting all the secondary material here – it’s something the Jedi never really get to make up for. Anakin’s throwing Palpatine in the pit is a redemption for him but it doesn’t quite redeem the Jedi for their part in things. They just get to die.
Until The Rise of Skywalker! The Jedi are able to finally redeem themselves by assisting Rey. It’s a wonderful scene because it does the thing Star Wars has always been about, making up for the mistakes of the past.
Windu: Feel the Force flowing through you, Rey.
Anakin: Let it lift you.
Adi Gallia: Rise, Rey.
Qui-Gon: We stand behind you, Rey.
Yoda: Rise in the Force.
Kanan: In the heart of the Jedi, lies her strength.
Luke: Rey, the Force will be with you. Always.
I dearly wish we had seen the Jedi in uh… the flesh? In physical form. But hearing their voices was powerful as well. When Rey says “And I am all the Jedi!” to Palpatine it feels deserved, to me at least, because now these other people have finally got the same thing Anakin got – a chance to make up for their mistakes.
And that’s why I liked Palpatine’s return. :)