Star Wars boasts some of the most dynamic, interesting, and beloved sci-fi characters of all time.
Fans of the series will be hard pressed to forget any of the fantastic moments in the original movie trilogy, and, though things may have gotten a little out of hand in Lucas’ prequels, it’s still fair to say that the property’s lovable characters are a huge part of what makes this at times outlandish space opera so great.
That said, Star Wars has also put forth some of the most commanding and compelling villains in cinematic history.
Darth Vader and Darth Sidious have are ranked among the most famous domineering forces in all of pop culture, and their vicious mugs have adorned many a poster, lunchbox, and desktop screen since their introduction in 1977.
As cool as the Sith may at times be, however, there is a fair bit of lore surrounding them that doesn’t make much sense.
Viewers and readers eager to suspend their disbelief may not take issue with such trivial quirks, but the likes of Emperor Palpatine, Darth Vader, Darth Maul, and many other so-called Dark Lords have fouled in some pretty ridiculous ways.
They claim to be an all-powerful force capable of taking total control of the galaxy, but their actions often don’t make much sense.
The Force may work in mysterious ways, which non-users can’t quite comprehend, but that doesn’t mean that the weird actions of the Sith should be totally excused as mystic manipulation.
With that said, here are the 20 Things About The Sith In Star Wars That Make No Sense.
20 Darth Maul Is Denied by the Emperor
Darth Sidious took many apprentices before settling on an edgy teen with parental issues turned cyborg, the most interesting and formidable of which was a tattooed Dathomirian known as Darth Maul.
Though he was easily the best thing about The Phantom Menace, his time was, quite literally, cut short.
However, as was revealed to the general viewing populace in Solo: A Star Wars Story, Maul survived his encounter with Qui Gon and Obi Wan and was compensated with a pair of cool robotic legs.
Instead of readmitting him, though, Sidious was disgusted by Maul’s failures and pushed him aside.
Because of this, Sidious disowned him in favor of Count Dooku, who was much less intimidating.
19 They Can Train Much Later Than The Jedi
The Jedi Order was very picky about those it allowed to enter its ranks, and it seemed to be even pickier about the age at which children should be trained.
Qui Gon’s interest in the young Anakin Skywalker was scrutinized relentlessly by the council, and, at the apparently ancient age of nine, he was deemed to be too old to train.
On the opposite end of the Force spectrum, fans learned from the excellent Darth Plagueis novel that Sheev Palpatine only entered Sith tutelage at the age of 17.
It would stand to reason that, despite the philosophical separation, it would still be best to train Force-sensitive beings early, and it makes no sense that Darth Sidious, one of the most powerful Force-wielders to ever live, started training so late in life.
18 They Nearly Hunted Themselves To Extinction
The ultimate goal of the Sith seems to have constantly been to gain absolute control over the galaxy.
Though nearly accomplished by Darth Sidious centuries after the fall of the Sith order, it’s odd to think that it ever happened at all.
Before the Rule of Two — a decision instated by Sith Lord Darth Bane in an effort to curtail Sith infighting — legions of Sith raught civil strife on their order in an effort to gain personal control.
In fact, things were so bad at one point that the Sith nearly hunted themselves to extinction.
It makes little sense that the Sith would be propped up as such an intimidating force, yet, before Darth Bane came along, they could hardly hold their order together at all.
17 Darth Sidious' Battle Scars
Darth Sidious was undoubtedly one of the most skilled sentient entities to ever manipulate the Force, and fans have theorized that he used his mastery of all things metaphysical to mask himself from the omniscient senses of the Jedi.
Some believe that part of his deception involved the concealment of his true face, which we see irreversibly revealed during his encounter with Mace Windu in Revenge of the Sith.
However, others speculate that his grizzly mug was the result of his own Force powers having been reflected back at him during that battle.
The true nature of Sidious’ physical form may have been left mysterious on purpose, but most fans would like a little clarity.
16 Their Names Have Other Meanings... Except Darth Vader's
In keeping with the intimidating, dark nature of the Sith, most of the names of anointed dark side practitioners are menacing and diabolical.
For instance, Darth Sidious is likely meant to be a riff on the word "insidious," Darth Plagueis is a take on the word "plague," and Darth Bane was… well, the "bane" of the Jedi.
However, there is one major exception to this rule: that being Anakin Skywalker’s given title.
Darth Vader doesn’t seem to translate into any particular word, and, though still fearsome in its own right, it apparently doesn’t have any real meaning.
Some fans have pointed out that the world "vader" roughly translates to the word "father’" in some Germanic languages, though that hardly holds as much weight as some other Sith names.
15 The Rule Of Two Isn't Always Followed
Darth Bane seems to have made it pretty clear that, if the Sith order were to survive, they would have to keep their circle very, very small.
Darth Sidious, for all of his brilliant machinations, seems to have had a hard time sticking to this principle.
He went through a good number of apprentices before finally settling on Vader, whom he eventually tried to replace with the Sith Lord’s own son.
While most believe Darth Maul to have been Sidious’ first apprentice, he actually first mentored Maul’s mother.
However, upon first meeting Maul, Sidious recognized his potential and abandoned Talzin, Maul’s mother, in favor of Maul himself — and we all know what came of that decision.
14 Kylo Ren Wants To Be Like Darth Vader, But He Isn't A Sith
Despite his ancestry and obvious dark side allegiances, Kylo Ren is not considered to be a Sith.
While not all strong dark side users, strictly speaking, need to be indoctrinated into the cult of the Sith, it makes little sense that Ren would be such a Vader fanboy, and yet not consider himself a Sith.
The reasoning for this deviation likely stems from Snoke’s mysterious past, as, for some reason, he considers himself to be part of a movement entirely separate from the Sith, though he seems happy to command the remnants of the Sith-led Empire.
These antagonists are Sith in all but name, and it begs a further explanation which many hope to see in Episode IX.
13 Peace is a Lie... Except When It Comes To The Empire
One of the pillars of Sith thought stems from the idea that peace is an impossibility, and dark side devotion and passion are the only true means of life.
However, nobody appears to have told that to the Empire, which frequently claims to be restoring peace and order to the galaxy.
The Sith Code seems to imply that war and turmoil are the natural state of the universe, and it makes no sense that the Sith-directed Empire would strive for total peace and order.
Perhaps this was just a marketing gimmick, though we do have to wonder what Palpatine’s plans were once his enemies had all been vanquished. Perhaps he was going to take up golf.
12 Only Darth Sidious Can Use Force Lightning
While many of Darth Sidious’ tactics with a lightsaber were a bit questionable (case in point being his downright horrendous twist and shout in Revenge of the Sith), he was quite capable in other, more sinister Sith battle strategies.
Chief among his mastery of the Force was his ability to use Force lightning, which he used to defeat Mace Windu, Yoda, and even Luke Skywalker (though Vader later saved the day in that instance).
If Sidious is so skilled with this technique, why is it that his apprentice, Darth Vader, can’t use it?
None of the movies explain why he isn’t able to shoot lightning from his fingertips like his master, and we can only assume it to be a lingering defect of his life-sustaining armor.
The Phantom Menace was packed with awful plot points that detracted from the greatness of the original trilogy, but the worst addiction may have been the de-mystifying nature of midichlorians.
As extra cell organelles that allow Jedi to commune with the Force, they provided an answer to questions that no Star Wars fan wanted to be solved.
Worse, Shmi Skywalker, Anakin’s mother, insisted that he was conceived of no father, and Qui Gon Jin took that to mean that he was created by these midichlorians.
This makes no sense at all and begs a better explanation.
There is evidence to suggest that Darth Plagueis conjured Anakin through his powers, though we still aren’t totally sure.
10 Darth Vader Doesn't Notice Every Disturbance in the Force
Vader was aware of the existence of his son, Luke Skywalker, for some time before their encounter on Bespin, and he was usually able to tell through the Force that Luke was nearby.
Given that Luke was also a powerful Force user and Force-attuned persons are usually able to detect each other, this makes sense.
However, he is totally oblivious to the presence of his daughter, Leia Organa, until she is revealed to him as such in Return of the Jedi.
Why couldn’t Vader sense her before? Was her presence obscured by Luke’s?
She was established as Force-sensitive when she intrinsically knew where to find Luke in Empire, so why is it that Vader never picks up on that?
9 Darth Vader's Suit
Anakin Skywalker is saved from a fiery end by Emperor Palpatine on the planet Mustafar.
However, for whatever reason, the Emperor didn’t see fit to supply Skywalker with the most up-to-date life-sustaining equipment, instead opting to stick him in a black suit that kept him in a near-constant state of pain.
The reason behind this move was to ensure that Vader’s Force powers would be amplified as a result of his chronic pain, but this seems redundant, as the loss of his wife would have provided the same effect.
In fact, were Vader outfitted in something a little more comfortable, he may have been an even better warrior.
8 Sith Force Ghosts
Unlike the Jedi, the Sith don’t seem to be able to live on postmortem in the form of a Force ghost. As a result, these dark warriors adopted a selfish, prideful methodology.
Yet, there have been some instances of Sith unlocking abilities that allow them to continue living after their bodies are destroyed.
Sidious, for instance, was able to transfer his being into a series of clones in the Star Wars expanded universe, and Exar Kun was similarly able to transcend his mortal form for a time.
This doesn’t make sense: why would the Sith live as if passing away is an inevitability, even though is seemingly isn’t?
7 Luke's Hiding Spot
Vader may have been a skilled warrior with the near limitless resources of the Empire at his fingertips, but he still wasn’t able to suss out the location of Luke Skywalker in the years leading up to the Battle of Yavin.
This is particularly odd due to the fact that Luke grew up on the very same planet as Vader under the watch of his unwitting brother-in-law.
If Vader was so powerful, why couldn’t he find Luke hiding right under his nose?
Tatooine is intended to be stationed in a pretty backwater section of the galaxy, but had he truly never thought to check his own homeworld?
6 Kylo Ren Can Freeze Blaster Bolts
Lightsabers seem to be just as useful defensively as they are offensively, and Jedi and Sith alike seem to block lightening-fast blaster bolts with ease when wielding them.
We’ve seen the likes of Luke, Vader, Obi Wan, and many others use this battle tactic.
However, we’ve only ever been introduced to one man with the ability to literally freeze these energy bolts in mid-air.
Perhaps it was a move that every other Force user simply wasn’t interested in, but why is it that Kylo Ren, a moody Darth Vader wannabe, is able to pull off this tactic in the opening scene of The Force Awakens when even his much more powerful grandfather seemingly couldn’t make it happen?
5 They Still Have A Sith Language
Though they never make a direct appearance in any of the movise, the Sith were actually considered to be their own species and even had their own language.
This is a bit confusing because it seems to indicate that only certain beings with Sith heritage could become true Sith Lords, though we don’t necessarily know if this is the case.
Plus, though it may have been widely used during the era of Sith rule, an entire language doesn’t seem to be useful with a prequel-era population size of two.
Granted, Sidious and his apprentices may have used it off-camera to communicate, but it seems like an odd inclusion in the lore.
4 Sith Ancestry
Continuing with the idea that it may take a specific heritage to truly adapt the ways of the Sith, this would seem to suggest that many powerful Force-users would have some sort of Sith ancestry.
Though we don’t know of any successors to Palpatine’s line outside of the decanonized Expanded Universe, this may indicate that the progenitors of the Skywalker line may have actually been Sith.
Since Vader, and, by extension, his son Luke, both held massive dark side potential, could it possibly be that they are both delineated from some ancient Sith warrior?
This is a question to which many would enjoy a solid, canonical answer.
3 The Wish To Be Immortal
As evidenced by the exploits of Exar Kun, Darth Plagueis, and Darth Sidious, the Sith are, to some extent, fascinated with the concept of immortality.
Plagueis, in particular, was described by Palpatine as having been obsessed with the idea of extending the lives of himself and those around him.
Tragically, as we are all aware, he was exterminated by his own apprentice, thus ending his quest for eternal life.
However, the Jedi are known to be able to live on in the form of Force ghosts.
The Sith believe the dark side to be the true arbiter of power, which makes no sense given that one of their most sought-after powers is already a light side capability.
2 Padmé Perishing Due To A Broken Heart
The backlash against Episode III: Revenge of the Sith wasn’t nearly as strong as it was for the proceeding movies, though some quirky plot elements still drew the ire of some fans.
For instance, we still don’t quite understand what caused Padmé’s passing in the movie, though most concluded that she was destroyed by the grief brought by her husband’s transition to the Dark Side.
What may make slightly more sense, however, would be the idea that Sidious somehow managed to end her via his connection to the Force.
His manipulations would have had to span light years for this to work, though, and it would be nice to receive some conformation concerning this weird scene.
1 Darth Vader's Wish To Indoctrinate Luke
Darth Bane’s Rule of Two clearly states that, in order to preserve the Sith order, there can only be two of them in existence at a time — a master, and an apprentice.
That said, it seems odd that Darth Sidious would have taken so kindly to Vader’s proposition of indoctrinating Luke Skywalker into the ways of the dark side.
This would certainly mean that there would be a total of three Sith, which goes against this ancient law.
Sidious must have either intended to pass the torch on to Vader or perhaps accept Luke as his new apprentice in the wake of Vader’s defeat.
Any other scenario would go against the Sith code of conduct and make little canonical sense.