Until the most recent two Star Wars movies, The Last Jedi and Rogue One, the story mostly focused on the battle between the Jedi warriors and the dark forces of the Sith. This meant that the battle was between the two most powerful forces in the universe, with everyone else in the middle, unsure of their fate or even their place in the world. However, in the last two Star Wars movies, the main story explains that anyone can control the Force and it is something that is inside even those people deemed average. However, as the characters in these two movies proved, their will and determination can make all the difference in the world when it comes to who is considered powerful — and you don’t even have to be a Jedi.
The thing is that this isn’t new. Even back to the original trilogy, there have been extremely powerful heroes and villains, with even smugglers, princesses and stuffed muppets able to hold their own against robots, Sith lords and armed military units. Having control over the Force helps, and being a Jedi is a legitimate trump card to possess, but there were heroes in all stations of life a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Here is a look at the 15 most powerful characters in the Star Wars movie universe, ranked based on their power.
15. THE EWOKS
When it comes to the original Star Wars trilogy, most fans are onboard when calling them the definitive saga. However, there are just as many people decrying Return of the Jedi, referring to it as the Star Wars movie with the Muppets. What fans don’t seem to understand is that the Ewoks may look like hairy Muppets, but they are possibly the most powerful fighting force in the galaxy.
When the Empire faced off with Luke, Leia, Han and the rebel forces on Endor, the Ewoks more than held their own. These little creatures held off military forces with speed bikes and guns using nothing but spears and traps. Want even more evidence that these creatures are powerful and not just jokes? They are cannibals, as shown when they were cooking up some Imperial troopers in celebration of their victory. Ewoks aren’t cute little Muppets — they are scary dangerous.
14. HAN SOLO
This year, the saga of Han Solo continues when he gets his own movie, Solo: A Star Wars Story. Taking place before he meets up with Luke Skywalker in the first trilogy, the film will show how Solo became the most dangerous scoundrel in the Star Wars universe. We might also see how he did or didn’t make the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs.
While looking at Han Solo, it isn’t easy to see how powerful he really is outwardly, but put him in a battle and watch the sparks fly. He remains responsible for getting Luke Skywalker out of a jam on more than one occasion and, despite his outward attitude, has always been there to help his friends when the chips were down. One-on-one, Han Solo is dangerous, but in the Millennium Falcon, he is one of the most powerful warriors in the galaxy.
13. QUI-GON JINN
One would think that the Jedi master who trained Obi-Wan Kenobi, who then trained Anakin Skywalker and Luke Skywalker, would rank higher on a list of the most powerful OP Star Wars characters. However, there are a few things that hold down Qui-Gon Jinn when examining his role (in the movies). Jinn appeared in the first Star Wars prequel, The Phantom Menace, but didn’t make it to the second.
For much of the movie, Qui-Gon Jinn was a great warrior, one of the noblest of all Jedi. He even took on the role of Obi-Wan from the original Star Wars movie by dying and leaving his pupil alone to face his greatest adversities; in this case, the eventual destruction of the Jedi order. With all that said, Jinn started the trend of casting the then 47-year-old Liam Neeson as an action star, something that continues as he works into his mid-’60s. That alone makes the character powerful for other reasons.
If you are looking for a friend who is loyal to the end, look no further than Chewbacca. As mentioned earlier, Han Solo is someone who proved over time to be one of the most powerful warriors in the Rebellion, but if it wasn’t for Chewbacca, Han would have likely died many times over. A great Wookie warrior who once fought alongside Yoda, Han Solo rescued Chewbacca from slavery, picking up a partner who owed Solo a life debt.
Chewbacca proved throughout the entire Star Wars franchise to be a formidable warrior, deadly both with a gun and behind the controls of the Millennium Falcon, and fiercely loyal to his friends and family. Whether he was saving Solo’s bacon more times than not or showing up in the prequels to lead devastating attacks in battle, Chewbacca proved to be someone you wanted on your side in any fight.
11. DARTH MAUL
If you go by looks alone, Darth Maul might be the coolest character in Star Wars history. While Phantom Menace has a lot of problems, the creation of Darth Maul is not one of them. Of course, he is lower on the list for much the same reason that Boba Fett is nowhere to be found at all. They died without doing too much to show their power.
However, unlike the bounty hunter, Darth Maul had one huge moment before dying. Darth Maul killed Qui-Gon Jinn, which is a monumental moment since that Jedi warrior was the one man who believed in peace in the galaxy above all else. His lightsaber was fantastic and his overall look and menacing presence helped Maul steal the entire movie away from the heroes. Add in the fact that the animated series showed that Darth Maul survived his apparent death and had an incredible story arc, and that makes him even more powerful.
10. GENERAL GRIEVOUS
There are a lot of robots in the Star Wars universe, from the comedy sidekicks like C-3PO and the useful R2-D2 to the battle-tested BB-8. However, there is something scary and devastating about the cyborg warrior General Grievous that puts him a level above the rest. Grievous was the Supreme Commander of the Droid Army in Clone Wars and killed so many Jedi warriors that he was easily the most powerful cyborg in the galaxy.
Of course, Grievous was not always a cyborg, and at one time was a Kaleesh warrior trained by Count Dooku as a Jedi hunter before becoming the ultra-powerful cyborg warrior. His entire body became a weapon, with lightning quick reflexes. However, as dangerous and powerful as Grievous was, he ended up meeting his demise when battling Obi-Wan Kenobi in Revenge of the Sith.
9. LEIA ORGANA
Princess Leia Organa has no real powers. She has a sense of the Force thanks to the fact that her father is Darth Vader and her brother is Luke Skywalker, but she herself showed little-to-no skill in using it until her space walk in The Last Jedi. However, when looking at the most powerful characters in the Star Wars movies, there is more to the idea of strength than mystical powers. Remember that it was Leia who killed Jabba the Hut with her bare hands (and a chain).
When it comes to generally non-powered characters, there might not be another character as strong as Leia when it comes to determination, willpower and getting things done. From the first three Star Wars movies through the entire battle leading to and through The Last Jedi, Leia led the Rebellion to victory after victory, never looking back and never considering defeat.
8. OBI-WAN KENOBI
Two men have spectacularly portrayed Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars movie, with the regal Alec Guinness as the elder Kenobi who leads the training of Luke Skywalker in Star Wars and Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan, the young warrior who stood tall among all other Jedi when it comes to fighting and loyalty.
If this was just based on the Alec Guinness version, Obi-Wan would be on this list, but much lower. He was wise and had a noble death, sacrificing his life to the lightsaber of Darth Vader to save Luke. However, his actions in the prequels are the stuff of legend, and what he did to Anakin Skywalker in Revenge of the Sith drives home how powerful and ruthless Obi-Wan could be. That doesn’t even include him killing both Darth Maul (twice) and General Grievous.
7. COUNT DOOKU
Admittingly, Count Dooku had a name that was meant more to make little kids snicker than send a sense of dread to anyone. It is also tragic that the name was given to someone as great as Christopher Lee to portray. With that said, Count Dooku is a powerful character and one who helped lead the downfall of the Jedi.
Yoda himself trained Count Dooku before he ended up becoming a Sith Lord and betraying the entire Jedi order. From there, Dooku became Darth Tyranus and served under Darth Sidious to lead the Separatist army against the Jedi council. To anyone doubting his power, his battle in a two-on-one fight with Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi was possibly the best in all the prequels, and it took the future Darth Vader to finally take Count Dooku down.
6. KYLO REN
It seems that, since the original trilogy kicked off, one of the most polarizing characters in the Star Wars world is Kylo Ren — the son of Han Solo and Princess Leia and the heir apparent to Darth Vader’s throne as the baddest man in the galaxy. However, those who love him realize how complex this character really is.
Unlike his grandfather, who turned to the Sith and ruled under the leadership of the Emporer, Kylo Ren is conflicted. He has his father’s rebellious side and has no use for the Jedi or the Sith. Yes, he has his tantrums and possible emo behavior problems, but Kylo Ren has proven to be powerful and ruthless, as he showed when he struck down his own master, Supreme Leader Snoke, in The Last Jedi.
When ranking names like Kylo Ren and Rey, it is important to remember one thing. When the two have fought, and it has happened twice so far, it is Rey who walked away with a slight victory while Kylo Ren is left angry and defeated. While Kylo held the power in The Force Awakens, it was Rey who moved ahead thanks to her training by Luke Skywalker and her determination to stand up to Kylo after the death of Snoke.
The important thing to remember about Rey is that, as of this writing, she is not an heir to a Jedi and is instead a nobody, a former scavenger whose parents left her as a child, and proof that anyone in the galaxy can now stand up and take control of their own destiny with the Force. She is a sign of hope for a galaxy that spent too long relying on Jedi warriors; that alone makes her immensely powerful.
The Star Wars movies originally introduced Palpatine as Darth Vader’s boss, known at the time as The Emporer. However, he got more screen time in the prequels when fans met him as Senator Palpatine, otherwise known as Darth Sidious. He was the master of Count Dooku and was able to take his vision of dismantling the Republic and successfully destroyed everything, taking over the rule of the galaxy.
What makes Palpatine so powerful in the start was not his immense powers of the Dark Side, but the fact that he was a master politician who was able to break things from inside the government, provoking a huge war and then building the Clone Army. Palpatine became the Supreme Chancellor by legal means, and that makes him scary powerful. Add in the fact that he proved to be more powerful than any Jedi and it took a sneak attack by Vader to vanquish him, and he is easily one of the most overpowered Star Wars characters in all the movies.
A very cool moment in the prequels came when Senator Palpatine and Yoda stood toe-to-toe and did battle. The fact that Palpatine threw everything but the kitchen sink at Yoda and the diminutive Jedi master still walked away speaks wonders for the power of Yoda. When almost all the Jedi warriors fell to their death, Yoda lived on and went into hiding, but that does not diminish his status.
Over his career, Yoda trained Count Dooku in the ways of the Force before his pupil became a Sith warrior. Knowing how power corrupts, Yoda was always wary of Anakin, for good reason, and put Luke Skywalker through hell to set him up for the upcoming war with Vader. Even in death, which came by natural causes, Yoda lived on as a spiritual guide for young Skywalker, and remained in that role all the way through The Last Jedi, continuing to make his presence known in war against the Dark Side.
2. DARTH VADER
At one time, there was not a more powerful warrior than Darth Vader. The former Anakin Skywalker learned his trade from Obi-Wan Kenobi before turning to the Dark Side. Anakin killed Count Dooku and became a Sith Lord after surviving a brutal attack by Obi-Wan. Vader even exacted vengeance on Kenobi by slaying the one-time all-powerful Jedi warrior.
Anakin Skywalker was similar to Kylo Ren in his insolence and refusal to accept structure, but when he went to the Dark Side and gave himself over to the idea of working for the Sith, he became even more powerful. Vader was ruthless and powerful, and it was only in the realization that his son Luke needed him that Vader finally turned and killed Palpatine. While it was a sneak attack, and it cost Vader his life, no one was able to hold a candle to the Dark Lord of the Sith while he was alive, not even his son Luke.
1. LUKE SKYWALKER
While Darth Vader was more powerful than Luke Skywalker when they were both alive, there is something that pushed Luke to the top of the list of the most overpowered Star Wars characters of all-time. Luke was able to convince his father to turn his back on Palpatine and that led the Rebellion to their greatest win in Return of the Jedi.
On top of that, Luke was trained by both Yoda and to a lesser extent Obi-Wan Kenobi, two of the most powerful Jedi masters of all time, and helped train both Kylo Ren and Rey, the two individuals standing at the top of the next generation of warriors. However, there is one moment that Luke proved to be completely overpowered and that is when he battled Kylo Ren on the battlefield to save his allies, all while sitting worlds away. Luke died, but he did it on his own terms, and remains the most powerful Jedi of all-time.
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