The Acolyte Episode 6 Just Dropped a Huge Clue That the Sith Lord Is Darth Plagueis

Darth Tenebrous, Venamis, or Plagueis the Wise? The latest episode of The Acolyte strongly implies Qimir is the latter...

Sith Lord in Star Wars: The Acolyte
Photo: Lucasfilm

This Star Wars: The Acolyte article contains spoilers.

There are just two episodes left of The Acolyte, and while some are still reeling from the major reveal that Manny Jacinto’s Qimir is the masked Sith Stranger who’s been puppeteering Mae (Amandla Stenberg), there are still questions about his identity. It’s clear there’s more to the story of “Smylo Ren” to be told, and during “Teach/Corrupt” we got our biggest tease yet as to his true Sith name.

Because of his place in the Star Wars timeline, hardcore fans have gone back to the lore and come up with plenty of theories as to who Qimir/The Stranger truly is. Now non-canon Legends continuity, in particular, offers three possibilities in particular: Darth Tenebrous, the Sith Lord who trained Plagueis the Wise; Darth Venemis, Tenebrous’ secret second apprentice that he was training at the same time as Plagueis, breaking the Sith Rule of Two; and Plagueis himself.

Again, most of this lore is no longer canon and is subject to change now, but The Acolyte hasn’t been shy about bringing in other elements of Legends continuity into the story—such as the Stranger’s handy cortosis. It’s quite possible Qimir could be any of these three Sith Lords in the flesh, but after episode six, there’s now one particularly strong contender.

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Qimir Is Actually Darth Plagueis

The location of Qimir’s island lair has strengthened the theory that he’s actually the legendary Darth Plagueis. The episode simply lists this as “Unknown Planet,” and some thought the latest outing opened on the familiar location of Ahch-To from the Sequel Trilogy, thanks to its oceanic and rocky backdrop. But others were quick to note that it looks like it’s actually a much more obscure planet called Bal’demnic, which ties back to Darth Plagueis in Legends.

First appearing briefly in a season 3 episode of the Star Wars: Clone Wars microseries, Bal’demnic was later fleshed out in James Luceno’s Darth Plagueis Legends novel from 2012. As well as being rich in the lightsaber-proof material cortosis, which we know Qimir’s helmet is made of, Bal’demnic is the planet where Plagueis eventually killed his own master, Darth Tenebrous, in 67 BBY. The Acolyte’s timeline is still a way off this point, since it takes place in 132 BBY, but it doesn’t count Plagueis out. Qimir’s desire for an acolyte, which ranks lower than an apprentice in Sith hierarchy, could tie into his ultimate plan to slay Tenebrous and have his own apprentice in place when the time comes. And since most of the above isn’t canon, The Acolyte could simply change a few dates to make the new lore work.

Either way, we wouldn’t be surprised if the show is saving Qimir’s Sith name reveal until the finale for dramatic effect. With Darth Plagueis fully established in canon in season one, a prospective second season could hit the ground running on the machinations that will eventually lead to the rise of Palpatine and the fall of the Republic.

Has Qimir Already Been at the Wrong End of Master Vernestra’s Lightwhip?

“Teach/Corrupt” also added another layer of mystery of Qimir’s backstory, as it’s strongly suggested that he’s an outcast from the Jedi Temple. When Osha says Qimir talks like he’s a Jedi, the latter responds, “I was. a long time ago.” Fans have theorized that the scars on Qimir’s back were caused by Vernestra Rwoh’s (Rebecca Henderson) purple lightwhip. It’s no coincidence the Jedi Master’s signature weapon was also introduced in this episode. Qimir tells Mae that he was stabbed in the back by “someone who threw me away,” suggesting that Vernestra was once his master, sensed his dark side potential, and chose to kill him like Luke initially did with Ben Solo. It would explain why Kylo Ren’s theme from the movies could briefly be heard during Qimir’s final scene in episode five.

The wildest theories suggest we’re in for an altogether more shocking twist where Vernestra or Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae) are revealed as Qimir’s master. It seems far-fetched, considering the pair are clearly still practicing Jedi, which seemingly goes against the rule of two Sith, no more, no less. Instead, Vernestra may be trying to cover up Qimir’s past and Sol’s role in the Brendok massacre. It’s this classic Jedi hubris which leads to Yoda covering the Sith in Episode I and the Jedi Order’s crumbling in Episode III

As for The Acolyte, it’s assumed now that Osha will fall to the dark side and become Qimir’s true pupil, especially after he put on his cortosis helmet. If the theories are true, then what happens next may eventually lead to Palpatine and the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise.

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Star Wars: The Acolyte is streaming now on Disney+.