'Star Wars 9' leaks about Palpatine's shocking return teased in poster

It could also reveal Rey's connection to Palpatine.

star wars 9 rise of skywalker poster palpatine

Rey’s connection to Emperor Palpatine may have been hiding in plain sight all along. In the first official poster for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Palpatine’s face hovers behind Rey and Kylo Ren as they fight, lightsabers at the ready. Sure, Palpatine’s inclusion on the poster is worth noting, but there’s something else that deserves just as much attention and that’s the blue lightning emanating from Rey’s lightsaber. Here’s why it matters so much in the context of more recent Episode IX leaks.

Warning! Possible spoilers for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker below.

The latest Star Wars leaks allegedly reveal that Palpatine will use Rey and Kylo as a way to draw energy from the Force. After which he’ll unleash his lightning powers to destroy most of the Resistance Fleet. Sounds like something the Emperor would do, right?

Well, redditor u/AlexSoloSkywalker expands upon that particular info to offer a fresh take on the poster’s significance, proposing a new theory that suggests Rey inherited her lightning powers from Palpatine and that she’ll use them in Episode IX.

Star Wars 9 Poster
You see it too, right?

“In the poster we see blue lightning coming out of her lightsaber. This clearly connects to the fact that she apparently has lightning powers in this movie,” they write. Considering that Palps is one of the only characters to use Force lightning in Star Wars movie canon, the poster strongly suggests that he and Rey are related connected in some way.

The trailers haven’t revealed anything about Rey using Force lightning in The Rise of Skywalker, but the implication is right there on the poster. But, how exactly will Rey come to use this dark Sith power? It’s not like she’s done it in any of the previous films. Lucky for us, that’s where Palpatine’s return could come in handy. Perhaps it’s only after he gains his full power that Rey is finally able to tap into these dormant powers. Or, following Rey’s Jedi training with Leia, she’ll be capable of unlocking her full potential as a Jedi.

Another thing to note is that Palpatine is centered in the middle of Rey and Kylo’s battle. Though Kylo’s lightsaber isn’t directly emitting any lightning, red lightning does surround him. This is unusual considering that Force lightning is historically blue. Still, if the leaks prove true and Palps is using Rey and Kylo to siphon Force energy, then the red lightning could be the result of that unholy process.

Rey Finn
We're just as shocked as Rey is by these turn of events.

The theory essentially provides further evidence that Rey is, in fact, Palpatine’s granddaughter, cementing their shocking genetic connection. Could Rey have inherited the Sith lord’s powers? Absolutely, though the film will finally have to explain their connection first.

Many fans were worried that Rey being revealed as the daughter of Han Solo, Qi’ra, or even bounty hunter Zorri Bliss, would erase the fact that her parents were nobody junk traders. But her being Palpy’s granddaughter, as weird as that is, is a genius workaround (her parents could still be nobodies) that makes the Sith lord’s return to the Star Wars franchise that much more meaningful. And if that gives Rey cool new Force powers, then it all might be worth it in the end.


Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters December 20, 2019.

Media via Lucasfilm