When the first teaser for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker debuted, fans were immediately excited by the hints of riveting action, even if we didn't learn much about the film's narrative. One of the more shocking moments of the teaser was the inclusion of Emperor Palpatine's iconic laugh in the final moments, revealing that the villain will return to the narrative in some capacity. Fans have been theorizing how such a twist would be possible, though an unearthed post that was initially considered a "leak" of the plot could provide more credible answers than we initially deduced when the information was posted.
WARNING: Possible spoilers below for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
In the above post, which dates back to February before the teaser debuted, a user claimed that Palpatine would be revealed to have returned first by transferring his consciousness into Supreme Leader Snoke, only for that consciousness to then be transferred into a physical object.
Of course, we still don't entirely know how Palpatine's consciousness could have found a home in Snoke, but, given how little we know about either character, the new film could easily offer up viewers an explanation. Multiple reports about the upcoming film have claimed that Kylo Ren would be in search of a MacGuffin, despite the nature of the object being unknown. Snoke's death forcing Palpatine's consciousness into a physical object, which would become something both Kylo and our heroes would want to find, would explain why it is such a sought-after item.
The Knights of Ren were first hinted at in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, yet were absent from Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The characters have been reported to play a larger role in the new film, so the theory that Kylo and the Knights have different objectives with the MacGuffin could justify not only their involvement, but the notion that Kylo aims to become the true ruler of the galaxy, as opposed to following Snoke or any other leaders' orders. Kylo and the Knights would then be at odds with one another. Additionally, the post notes that Matt Smith is a member of the Knights of Ren, despite the actor and Lucasfilm refusing to confirm his involvement. An international site for The Rise of Skywalker, on the other hand, seemingly confirmed his involvement in the film.
Star Wars fans might not immediately accept the idea that an individual's consciousness could be contained in a physical object, though a Darth Vader comic book series last year introduced audiences to Momin, a former Sith who manages to retain his consciousness in a helmet. Vader not only interacted with the disembodied Momin, but when the helmet was placed on an indvidual, Momin was able to command this corporeal form.
Were the new film to follow this narrative trajectory, it would require a good amount of explanation, though fans who have kept up with the comics could vouch for these clues being established long before the film landed in theaters.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker lands in theaters on December 20th.
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