Lost Legends

The Acolyte Should Show us the Franchise’s Most Infamous Sith Master

It’s not a story the Jedi would tell you.

Lost Legends

The Acolyte might finally make Star Wars feel new again. Not only is it a Sith-focused story set a century before The Phantom Menace, but it’s also a mystery following a Jedi investigating the murder of their comrades. We still don’t know who the victims are, who the assassin is, and just how vengeful former Padawan Mae is involved, but there may be an explanation for one big question: why are Jedi being targeted? The entire answer may be laid out in a non-canon book.

In an interview with StarWars.com, Acolyte showrunner Leslye Headland revealed that the non-canon Extended Universe (now called Legends) features heavily in the series. “There are a couple of really big EU ideas that are utilized both early on in the series and later in the series,” she said.

Lost Legends is an Inverse series about the forgotten lore of our favorite stories.

Palpatine tells Anakin about Darth Plagueis in Revenge of the Sith.


While Legends lore is sprawling, there’s one Sith who would fit perfectly into both the timeline and story of The Acolyte: Darth Plagueis. You probably know him as Palpatine’s master and the subject of an awkward conversation at the Mon Calamari Ballet, but in 2012, he was the subject of his own novel, Darth Plagueis. In it, author James Luceno wrote about Plagueis surpassing and murdering his Sith master, as per the Sith Ruel of Two, then seeking out a young Sheev Palpatine, a minor royal on Naboo.

Plagueis performs experiments on midichlorians to try and manipulate life itself, which Palpatine mentions in Revenge of the Sith. Similar experiments on Jedi later become a major part of The Mandalorian, prompting Moff Gideon to look for Grogu, all of which builds to Palpatine’s return in Rise of Skywalker.

The Acolyte could continue this saga-long throughline by having Plagueis be the motivation behind the Jedi murders. His experiments apparently require samples from Force-sensitive beings, and in the last days of the High Republic, the vast majority of Force-sensitives are either Jedi or training to become Jedi.

Plagueis and a young Palpatine on the cover of Darth Plagueis.

Del Rey Books

The novel starts only 30 years before The Phantom Menace, but Plagueis is a Muun, a species that lives for well over a century, so he could be active during The Acolyte. Notably, the trailer shows Sol, the Jedi investigator, on an ice planet that bears a striking resemblance to Scipio, the Muun homeworld.

Incorporating Darth Plagueis into The Acolyte is a no-brainer. He’s the subject of one of the most iconic monologues in Star Wars history, has direct ties to Palpatine himself, and foreshadows the experiments that occupy so much of the Mandoverse. His story is also one of the few set directly before the prequel trilogy, meaning he could jump from Legends to canon without disrupting the rest of the timeline.

Any mystery fan knows a crime requires means, motive, and opportunity. While means and opportunity will remain unknown until The Acolyte premieres, there’s a perfect motive already baked into Star Wars canon... unless this is all just a classic red herring.

The Acolyte premieres June 4 on Disney+.

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