The internet is full of many wonderful amazing things. From amazing articles here at FanFest.com, to wonderful podcasts, such as those at Fan Fest, to various videos streaming services that also offer original content such as Control an original Fan Fest show. The internet also offers theories on….everything. One of many theories out there deal with the leader of the First Order: Supreme Leader Snoke. These theories all address Snoke’s background and how it may affect The Last Jedi and rest of the Star Wars galaxy.
Now, I know a certain Star Wars podcaster from Australia has carved himself a small niche saying that all theories regarding Snoke he finds are full of smoke. Considering how very little we know about the character himself, lets take some information from the “centralized canon” and perhaps make form a theory about the Supreme Leader that is at least plausible.
Warning: spoilers from the new Star Wars centralized canon ahead!
Who is Supreme Leader Snoke?
As expected, there is not a lot of information related to Snoke outside of some basic information that can be found on StarWars.com. What can be stated is that he is a Force-senestive being of some sort and a follower of the dark side of the Force. He also looks like he has been through a physical ordeal. Considering this is Star Wars, I would not be suprised if his backstory was flushed out more either in future films or in other media. Or perhaps this is the next spin-off movie (Snoke: A Star Wars Story)?!
Snoke and Kylo Ren
According to Star Wars: The Force Awakens: A Visual Dictionary, Snoke believes that Kylo Ren is “the ideal embodiment of the Force, a focal point of both light and dark side ability.” It is also pointed out that Snoke decreed that Kylo Ren’s birth name, Ben Solo, is to never be spoken (within the First Order). We also know that it was Snoke who seduced Ben to the dark side of the Force, which led to the massacre of Luke Skywalker’s Jedi Order (or whatever they will call Luke’s Jedi school in canon). With the descruction of Starkiller base in Episode VII, Snoke ordered General Hux to bring Kylo to him “to complete his training.”
The Nature of the Force
One of the most catching phrases that I have noticed was Snoke’s belief that Kylo is the perfect embodiment of the light and dark side of the Force. Why would this matter at all? Then, it hit me that this is important for the story (and from a business perspective as well). From what is known about the “prophecy:” Anakin Skywalker was the “chosen one” who was to bring balance to the Force and destroy the Sith. When this happened with the death of the Emperor, Sheev Palpatine aka Darth Sidious, being thrown down a chasm and the death of Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, the Sith, as we know it, ceased to exist. However, what if this prophecy also meant the end of the Jedi as well? Maybe Lor San Tekka and the other followers of the Church of the Force and their believe that in order for the Force to be in balance that the Jedi Order would need to return is wrong? We have also seen that other hints related to the Force and how we will possibly soon understand it and where the story could go:
- In Star Wars Rebels, Garazeb Orrelios aka “Zeb” learns that he is not the last of his people, the Lasat (“Legends of the Lasat,” Season 2, Episode 14) as they are located on a planet called Lira San, which is located in the area known as the “Wild Space” beyond the Outer Rim. It is also mentioned that the Lasat believe in the Force; however, they call it the Ashla.
- JJ Abrams, in the lead up to The Force Awakens, stated in an interview with Empire magazine, that Kylo Ren is not a follower of the Sith (which means, if Kylo is following the teachings of Snoke, and Kylo is not Sith, then Snoke himself is also not Sith).
- In large parts of Season 3 of Star Wars Rebels, Kanan interacts with a being known as the Bendu, who claims to represent both the light and dark side of the Force (aka “the middle”).
- In the concluding book to the Aftermath trilogy Star Wars: Aftermath: Empire’s End, the book tells us about the Emperor and his connection to the Battle of Jakku, the training of children as soldiers, and the Emperor’s interest in the “Wild Space,” or uncharted areas of the galaxy. This was known as the “Contingency.”
- In the trailer for the forthcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi (aka “Episode VIII”), the “balance” as being “so much bigger.”
What we seem to be heading towards is that yes, the Jedi returned, but as Luke says at the end of the trailer for The Last Jedi, it is time for the Jedi to end. What the Sith excel at, at least in the films and TV shows, it using the truth and twisting it for their own benefit. In this case, the Jedi were, unknowingly, twisted by Darth Sidious aka Sheev Palpatine, into becoming something that they were not (whether you would say it was for a political ideology (Republic vs. Seperatist), or that the Jedi became warriors as opposed to diplomats (with a twist), can be discussed further). This mainly stems from what we know about “the prophecy:” that the “Chosen One” will destroy the Sith and bring balance to the Force. As Yoda states in Episode III, the prophecy could have been “misread.” From what we can guess, the Jedi took it as the end of the Sith and the Jedi/light side being the “balance of the Force.” However, perhaps if we look at the prophecy from “a certain point of view,” perhaps these words are literal: bringing actual balance to the Force.
Kylo Ren (Snoke) vs. Rey (Luke Skywalker)
Perhaps this is why between Episode VI and Episode VII that Luke’s attempt at a “Jedi Order” failed: understanding what bringing balance to the Force meant. As we saw in Episode VI, Luke did not accept the idea of Jedi that attachment is forbidden. It was Luke’s attachment and belief in the good in his father, not the Jedi who wanted Darth Vader killed, that ultimately ended the Sith. Perhaps in the years since then, and why Luke went looking for the first Jedi temple after the Knights of Ren slaughtered his students, is to perhaps make some changes to the Jedi teachings, particularly to attachment and “finding a balance.”
For Snoke, and whatever happened to Ben Solo, he saw someone who was the perfect embodiment, but could be twisted further to the dark side. For Rey, she did have to learn to let go of the attachment of whomever was suppose to come back to get her on Jakku, and to embrace a balance in her newfound Force abilities but showing love for those she came to care about and to accept her role in the galaxy as perhaps a “balanced Jedi,” but more so towards the light side. This allows also for the story to expand to other views of the Force and, possibly, more Star Wars stories to be told outside of either a Jedi or Sith view of the Force.
Speculating on Snoke
I think it is safe to assume that Snoke is a being from the “Wild Space” region of the galaxy. But, how is Snoke is aware of Luke, Ben Solo? The only possible explanation I can come up with is that, with Palpatine’s interest in the “Wild Space,” that Snoke met, at least once, with Palpatine, and discussed any possible forthcoming issues that could end Sheev’s rule and what should be done. We have already seen that after Palpatine’s death, he sent messanger droids to carry out orders in the event of his demise, such as in Operation: Cinder. Who is the to say that anything discussed was this further discussed and executed by Snoke, a fellow dark side user of the Force?
Let me know what you think. Is this more Snoke nonsense or do you think this has any credence?