Star Wars: The Acolyte has The Jedi Order of the High Republic era facing the threat of Force-user assassin Mae and her dark side master. There are already theories about the true identity of The Acolyte’s “Master” character; however, there are also theories that this Master is just a red herring and that the villain is actually just an acolyte to another, more powerful Sith threat.

Who Is The Acolyte’s True Sith Lord?

(Photo: Disney+)

Star Wars has traditionally made Sith apprentices act as muscle (Maul, Asajj Ventress, Vadar Kylo Ren), while Sith Lords (Palpatine) tend to operate from the shadows using manipulation and deceit as their main weapons. Like their Jedi counterparts, Sith tend to “ascend” beyond physical combat when their attunement with the Force gets strong enough.

That detail is key to remember when looking back at the initial episodes of The Acolyte, and the trailer footage. This helmeted “Master” definitely makes their presence felt on the battlefield, eventually, displaying considerable power in the process. That kind of detail could signal that this “Master,” while formidable,

So who is?

There are some very interesting ways that Headland could throw a big twist into The Acolyte, with the reveal of a Sith Lord hiding in plain sight.

The Acolyte Theory: Is Vernestra Rwoh A Sith Lord?

(Photo: Lucasfilm)

One ambitious twist could be revealing that the character of Vernestra Rwoh is a Sith Lord. Rowh plays a very small role in the first episodes of The Acolyte – and that could be with good reason.

Rwoh would be a significant Jedi to have turn to the dark side, as she is a character who has appeared in Star Wars’ The High Republic line since it started in 2021. If you want to know who Vernestra Rwoh is: she was a Jedi prodigy who became a Knight at age 15. Rwoh was part of the Jedi and Republic’s expansion in the Outer Rim – and part of the war for that territory, fighting against the marauder group the Nihil, the plant monsters the Drengir, and other threats.

Rwoh started out spirited and brave, but when the Jedi and Republic’s space station base Starlight Beacon was destroyed in a horrific Nihil strike, Vernestra lost her former master, Stellan Gios, her droid companion, and thought she lost her own Padawan Imri Cantaros, and close friend/fellow prodigy, Avon Starros. That stress made Rwoh stumble in her faith; she left the Jedi Order and became a “Wayseeker,” a Jedi who serves the Force directly, instead of operating under the Jedi Council’s authority. She eventually returned to help the Jedi Order free the portion of space the Nihil conquered as their “Occlusion Zone,” in order to save her padawan.

Vernestra Rwoh had powerful Force vision abilities when young, and she spent some significant time away from the order during her disillusionment with the Jedi Order. Even with the current High Republic story about the war against the Nihil Occlusion Zone wraps, Rwoh will have lived approximately 100 additional years by the time The Acolyte takes place. Could all that time, and changing perspective, have turned Vernestra Rwoh’s doubts into an all-out rejection of the Jedi?

(Photo: Lucasfilm)

Having Rwoh be the true “Master” Sith Lord would be a bold move. It would mean her entire line of Star Wars’ High Republic stories were a villain origin; it would also be a way of generating renewed interest in the novels and comics of The High Republic.

Best of all, Headland could arguably wrap this season of The Acolyte by only revealing to the audience (not the characters) that a prominent Jedi is also a secret Sith Lord (see also: Keyser Soze in Usual Suspects). That would set up a tradition of both Jedi hubris and Sith cunning that would run right into the Skywalker Saga.

Star Wars: The Acolyte premieres new episodes on Tuesdays on Disney+.


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