Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is among the most hotly anticipated films in recent memory, with fans eager to learn how it will conclude both the current trilogy and the Skywalker Saga that began in 1977. They're also, perhaps, anxious to see whether the finale will satisfy following the divisive The Last Jedi.
However, if it turns out anything like this new theory proposed on Reddit, the film might tie together the trilogy in a simple, effective manner. Naturally, this theory draw from Legends as well as information already known about the ninth film in the saga. That grants this theory some weight. Should fans hope this fan theory comes true? Will The Rise of Skywalker somehow tie together the plots of three separate trilogies into the ultimate conclusion?
Put a Stopper on Death
In Revenge of the Sith, Palpatine tells Anakin about how Darth Plagueis had the ability to stop death, intended to further manipulate the young Jedi. But what if there was truth to the story? Palpatine confesses he doesn't know how to properly perform the feat, but argues that together, with Anakin, perhaps they can figure something out.
Of course, if Palpatine and Darth Vader discovered a way to cheat death, the Emperor didn't employ it when his pupil tossed him into the core of the second Death Star. But what if Palpatine figured out a way to revive himself, using body-hopping?
The First Order Is Palpatine's Resurrection Plot
Recent speculation suggests Palpatine might have laid the foundation for the First Order. One theory floats the possibility he had troops on standby in the Unknown Regions, which might tie into the Sith Troopers introduced in the marketing, and merchandise, for The Rise of Skywalker.
Snoke, therefore, was probably merely a pawn Palpatine, used to further his own agenda. The theory indicates that Palpatine might have inhabited Snoke's body, but that doesn't necessarily have to be true. Snoke could have simply served as a tether for Palpatine's spirit and influence. He served as a useful tool to help the First Order rise, but, by The Last Jedi, Snoke had outlived his usefulness.
And what was Snoke's usefulness? Find a young body strong in the Dark Side of the Force. Like Rey.
Rey remains a no one in this theory; she's born from nothing. However, in a slight retcon, she was born strong in the Force and remained Snoke's primary target. According to this theory, Keri Russell's Zorri Bliss was sent to capture Rey for Palpatine/Snoke, because they viewed Rey as a powerful new body for Palpatine to inherit.
But Zorri takes mercy on her, and hides Rey from the First Order. She tells Snoke that Rey died, which turns the First Order's wrath upon her. Zorri and her partner go on the run, raising Rey as their own before leaving her on the last place Snoke would look: Jakku.
Perhaps Zorri and her partner become junk traders and alcoholics, as Kylo Ren's visions indicate in The Last Jedi. But they leave her with Rey's best interests at heart. As Zorri would have left with her ship, when Rey and the others encounter her in The Rise of Skywalker, Rey might recognize the vessel. Zorri might be able to explain Palpatine's plot, and how he threatens the Resistance.
With Rey out of his reach, who does Palpatine seek out as a worthy inheritor of his spirit? Kylo Ren. That leads to Palpatine cultivating Kylo as his own new vessel. As the new Supreme Commander of the First Order, and knowing nothing about Palpatine's true motives, he finds Palpatine in the Unknown Regions.
That is predicted in part due to a leak, which indicates the Knights of Ren and a "wayfinder" will lead Kylo to Palpatine's spirit. Palpatine will then begin grooming Kylo to become his new host, allowing him the opportunity to return his galactic empire to its former glory.
Kylo follows Palpatine's influence until the point where Palpatine orders him to execute Rey, who would have traveled to the Unknown Regions to defeat the former Emperor. That would force Palpatine to take hold of Matt Smith's character (who is mentioned in recent links as a Dark Side acolyte). They fight, but Palpatine will then jump into Kylo's body. Kylo will contain Palpatine inside of himself long enough for Rey to kill him, ending the saga.
Is This Plausible?
This theory isn't only plausible, it's almost logical. Part of the problem is that it sounds too predictable. It incorporates a running theme from the prequel trilogy to this one in a neat, effective manner. It also re-establishes Palpatine as the true primary antagonist of the franchise in a way that draws from Legends lore. It seems like the easiest solution to everything.
Since The Last Jedi, fan theorists have worked overtime to try to predict what could happen in the ninth chapter of the Star Wars saga. They spent two years theorizing about The Last Jedi, only to find Rian Johnson went out of his way to subvert expectations. J.J. Abrams will probably not accomplish that on the same level, but this fan theory seems too straightforward.
Directed and co-written by J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker stars Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, Billie Lourd, Keri Russell, Anthony Daniels, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams and Carrie Fisher, with Naomi Ackie and Richard E. Grant. The film arrives Dec. 20.