Supreme Leader Snoke, the Emperor Palpatine of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, seems to have come and gone without making much of an impact. But is he really gone? As we’ve seen from Luke Skywalker’s epic final stand in The Last Jedi, it’s possible to project yourself onto other planets using the Force. So, maybe that’s what Snoke was doing. It hardly seems likely that he’d go out in such an unceremonious fashion, especially given the operatic theatrics of this saga. There could be more to Snoke than meets the eye.
So, here are 10 common questions, answered.
10 Is Snoke A Sith Lord?
No, he isn’t. The passive moviegoer would be forgiven for thinking this villainous overlord is affiliated with the Sith, but the villains of Star Wars seem to be moving away from the Sith in the same way that the heroes are moving away from the Jedi. In Andy Serkis’ own words, “Snoke is bloody dark; way darker than Palpatine. He’s riddled with this osteoporosis so his body’s twisted, like a corkscrew. He’s incredibly damaged, so there’s a bizarre vulnerability about him. Beneath that vulnerability, though, is this intense hatred...He’s definitely not a Sith, but he’s certainly at the darker end of the Force.”
9 Is Snoke Darth Plagueis?
Probably not. While it was initially thought that Supreme Leader Snoke was really Darth Plagueis, the powerful Sith Lord mentioned by Palpatine in Revenge of the Sith, if it’s been confirmed that Snoke isn’t a Sith Lord, then he probably isn’t Darth Plagueis.
Plagueis technically belongs to the Star Wars Legends (what Disney decided to call four decades of Expanded Universe material after they took over and rewrote the whole thing), but since he was mentioned by Palpatine in the prequel trilogy, he just about managed to slip his way into the Disney canon. Still, it’s unlikely that it’s Snoke. Maybe he’ll make an appearance in the future, but this probably isn’t it.
8 How Did Snoke Become The Supreme Leader Of The First Order?
It’s a long story. The Sith Order died out with Darth Vader and Darth Sidious, and Snoke isn’t a Sith Lord. However, he does have an extremely strong connection to the Dark Side of the Force. He used this to lure Luke Skywalker’s most promising apprentice Ben Solo away from the path of a Jedi and turn him evil, breaking up the Skywalker family – the only family left with ties to the Light Side of the Force – and guided Ben as he became Kylo Ren. As Kylo Ren, he dominated the galaxy with the First Order before the Resistance showed up to stop him. That’s where The Force Awakens begins.
7 What Is Snoke’s Ring Made Of?
A big deal was made out of Snoke’s ring in The Last Jedi. When he was supposedly killed, his hands were cut off at the wrist and the ring was left lying on the arm of his throne. So, it’s clearly an important part of the character. The ring itself is made of gold and has glyphs from the Four Sages of Dwartii carved into it. The Four Sages of Dwartii were the early philosophers who came up with the dangerous ideas that led to people using the Dark Side of the Force for tyrannical evil, so they’re pretty controversial figures. There were statues of them in Palpatine’s office. The stone encrusted into the ring was made of obsidian, and Snoke found it near Darth Vader’s castle.
6 Is Snoke Really Mace Windu?
No. There was initially a massive fan theory that Snoke was really an older Mace Windu. The theory was fueled by George Lucas confirming, at Samuel L. Jackson’s behest, that Windu survived getting his face blasted with Force lightning by Senator Palpatine and flying out the broken window. It would make sense that an embattled Windu would turn his back on the Jedi and begin the First Order. Plus, it would explain how his face got so pale and dinged-up. However, The Last Jedi portrayed him as being around eight feet tall, which means he can’t be Mace Windu – or any human being, for that matter.
5 Where Was Snoke During The Original Trilogy?
If the sequel trilogy is only set a couple of decades after the original trilogy and Snoke isn’t in his twenties, where was he during the events of the original trilogy? Well, he was probably doing nothing. He seems to have come from a dark and dangerous corner of the galaxy that the Empire’s control didn’t really affect. Snoke was waiting for the fallout from the Galactic Civil War to pounce on a state of political confusion. As the Senate of the New Republic scrambled to figure out what to do to govern the galaxy, Snoke swooped in and took over.
4 How Old Is Snoke?
Really old. According to Andy Serkis, Supreme Leader Snoke is “a couple of hundred years old.” He also claims that the character’s scars have come from “previous battles,” and since it’s been so long since he sustained them, there’s been a kind of “decay” that has wilted and withered them, leading him to have the horrifically disfigured appearance we see on him today. Serkis says Snoke wasn’t always a withered, old, powerful figure – he used to be a soldier and had his skull caved in during a fight: “The way that his face is caved in, he has those deep scarifications. His skull’s almost been crushed.”
3 Is Snoke The Grand Inquisitor?
Maybe. There’s more evidence to support this fan theory than most others, as it lines up with everything we know about Snoke. In Disney XD’s Star Wars: Rebels, the Grand Inquisitor is a mysterious villain, he isn’t a Sith Lord, and he falls into the explosion caused by his own lightsabers. All we really know about Snoke is that he’s a mysterious villain, he isn’t a Sith Lord, and he has a scarred face. So, it would seem to line up that Snoke is the Grand Inquisitor. However, it’s more likely that there isn’t going to be a grand reveal and he’s simply a not-very-well-conceived original character.
2 Why Did Kylo Ren Kill Snoke?
Because he’d had enough of his crap, basically. All throughout The Last Jedi, Kylo Ren’s allegiance to the Dark Side of the Force was tested as he engaged in conversations with both Rey and Snoke, both pulling him in different directions. In the final showdown, Snoke ordered Kylo Ren to kill Rey, but instead, he activated Luke’s lightsaber and used it to chop Snoke in half, killing him.
But that wasn’t his big redemptive moment. He still charged on with his attack on the Resistance and he remains a villain to this day. So, why did he kill Snoke? Well, it’s all to do with Snoke’s gloating monologue about manipulating and controlling him. Kylo Ren hated that idea and decided to become the true leader of the First Order by eliminating Snoke, so there would be no one left to boss him around.
1 Is Snoke Really Dead?
This is the big question. Did Snoke really die when we saw him get cut in half in The Last Jedi? It didn’t seem like a big enough moment to really be the end of Snoke. The truth is, we won’t know the answer until Episode IX is released later this year. In typical J.J. Abrams fashion, plot details of Episode IX are being kept tightly under wraps.
The death of Snoke seemed more like the dumpster fake-out in The Walking Dead that was supposed to convince us Glenn was dead (that convinced no one), only to actually kill him off several episodes later. Maybe that’ll happen with Snoke. It’ll be revealed that his presence in The Last Jedi was actually a Force projection in Episode IX, but then he’ll be killed off for good straight after. Who knows?