Star Wars: The Last Jedi may have answered some of the biggest questions set up in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but it also brought new mysteries.
Since the beginning, there have been a lot of questions surrounding Snoke, including who he really is and what his true intentions are.
Warning: This article contains spoilers.
None of those questions were answered in Star Wars: The Last Jedi before he met his devastating demise at the hands of his apprentice Kylo Ren (Adam Driver).
What has been established so far, thanks to the official Star Wars: The Last Jedi visual dictionary, is that Snoke is an ancient being from the Unknown Regions who is strong with the dark side of the Force, but he is not a Sith.
In the sequel, it is also made clear that Snoke admires Darth Vader’s legacy as the leader of the Empire and a ruthless Sith Lord, but he still thinks that Vader’s sentimentality was a huge mistake that caused his downfall.
The Star Wars: The Last Jedi visual dictionary also revealed that Snoke wears a ring that features obsidian from the catacombs of Darth Vader’s castle in Mustafar.
On his page on the official description on the Star Wars website, Snoke is described as a “seeker of arcane lore,” which gives the impression that he has scoured the galaxy to learn things about the Force that no one even knew about.
Putting all this together, the popular and ever-ardent Star Wars watcher and YouTuber, Star Wars Theory, believes that Snoke had a connection to Darth Vader and even Emperor Palpatine.
It was only a couple of years ago, during the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, that a concept of a catacomb in the depths of Darth Vader’s castle was introduced. Doug Chiang, who was a production designer for the Felicity Jones-led Star Wars spinoff, talked about this area of Mustafar, which he referred to as a “Sith cave.”
The location under the castle was inspired by the paintings and sketches by the legendary Star Wars conceptual designer Ralph McQuarrie. One of these showed Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) visiting Vader in the “underground lava cave.”
“So we took that idea and thought, ‘Okay, well, maybe on the lower levels of Vader’s castle, there’s a more ancient part. That he actually built this castle on a foundation of an ancient structure.’ If you look at the finished design, it has this very strong element of a structure that was there for a purpose, and that purpose was to draw energy from the lava lake. If you look at the design of the base, it feels very much like a dam, and how the lava flows through it, possibly getting energy. And so we thought, ‘Okay, well, that’s the foundation. Maybe even deeper, or underneath that, is an even more ancient part, which is a natural cave where Vader goes to meditate.’ Visually, we’re trying to create a sort of history for the tower. The bottom is the most ancient, the lava lake dam part was perhaps what Vader built his foundation on, and then the tower was Vader’s addition.”
Chiang also revealed that in terms of design, Mustafar’s castle is similar to the Jedi temple, but instead of dark energy, the Jedi structure channels the light. This is why both towers feature a “tuning fork” look to them.
This leads Star Wars Theory to speculate that Snoke might have visited Mustafar before Darth Vader built the castle. He might have been the first to discover the dark side conduit it houses.
The YouTuber adds that he might have even attempted for to perform a mind connection to reach the Sith Lord and Emperor Palpatine or at least find out what they were up to as he devised his own heinous plan.
After all, in the Aftermath novels by Chuck Wendig, which is part of the Star Wars canon, it was revealed the latter was contacted by mysterious dark side energy from the Unknown Regions, which Star Wars Theory now believes was Snoke all along, building that mental bridge.
Connecting through the Force is not new in the saga. Star Wars: The Last Jedi just amplified it by showing it is possible for a powerful Force user like Snoke to link the minds of two other Force-sensitives even when they are on opposite sides of the galaxy. It may have something to do with the level of abilities of those being connected, which could determine how effective the Force link will be.
Add to that the Force abilities of the person initiating it. Snoke’s purported mind link with Darth Vader and Palpatine happened before Star Wars: The Force Awakens, so it is possible he had not mastered it yet and only knew about it as he looked for Force wisdom. It might have been extra challenging to deal with two of the most powerful Sith lords the galaxy far, far away had ever known.
However, since he has been around longer than them and the fact that he already owns an item that directly connects to the duo (that would be the abovementioned obsidian that sits on a gold band etched with Dwartii glyphs), as revealed in the Star Wars: The Last Jedi visual dictionary, it is not a stretch to think he succeeded, which is a testament to his true power and expansive Force knowledge.
Perhaps this ring might even be a conduit to some dark side Force energy that enhances his powers. Then again, it could just be a mere accessory that Snoke chooses to wear to show his admiration for them.
It should be noted that Luke, after all his travels, learned that balance between the light and dark is important in the Force. He even kept the artifacts he came across, including a crystal that once belonged to a Sith.
Snoke did the same, except that he realized much earlier the importance of balance. Fans will remember that he referred to Rey (Daisy Ridley) as Kylo Ren’s (Adam Driver) counterpart in the light in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
With all this, Star Wars Theory reinforces his belief that Snoke is directly connected to, if not the actual Prime Jedi in the flesh, whose likeness is featured in a mural on Ahch-To.
As per the Star Wars: The Last Jedi visual dictionary, the image shows “the Prime Jedi, the first in the Order, in a state of meditation and balance.”
For now, nothing is set in stone yet. As far as Star Wars: The Last Jedi is concerned, Snoke is dead, but his mysterious origins are expected to be explored in Star Wars: Episode 9 or the new trilogy.