The Acolyte Isn’t Breaking Canon, Here’s Why Star Wars Haters Are Wrong

By Zack Zagranis | Published

The recent trailer for the upcoming Star Wars series The Acolyte had a lot of cool stuff in it: well-choreographed one-on-one fights, a mysterious knife-wielding assassin who dresses like she’s one of the ninjas from Mortal Kombat, and even a Wookie Jedi! However, it also dared to show a red lightsaber in a time period supposedly devoid of Sith. This seemingly continuity-busting weapon sent many fans straight to their keyboards with the words “That breaks canon!!!” scrambling to break free from their fingertips.

Based On One Line Proven Wrong In The Movie It’s From

The truth, however, is that there is nothing in The Acolyte trailer that explicitly breaks canon, and claiming otherwise is disingenuous. Most of the rabid backlash came from a single line uttered by Jedi Ki-Adi-Mundi in the Phantom Menace: “Impossible, the Sith have been extinct for a millennium.” Now, we don’t want to judge anyone based on their looks, but should fans really be taking so much stock in a character that was based on “What if Obi-Wan Kenobi looked like a whale?

That’s completely true, by the way. Look it up.

Sith In The Time Of Jedi

Joking aside, that one line said that at a time when Palpatine had been doing all kinds of Sithy stuff behind the Jedi Order’s back, it just kind of highlights how oblivious the Jedi Order was to the dark side of the Force. Oblivious or not, though, if a bunch of Sith were operating out in the open, surely some Jedi would have knowledge of it. So what if the red lightsaber seen in the trailer belongs to one of Star Wars‘ other dark side cults, and The Acolyte doesn’t feature any Sith at all?

Anti-Jedi Doesn’t Mean Sith

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It may seem like splitting hairs, but Whale-Head Kenobi never said that all dark-side Force wielders had been extinct for a millennium, just the Sith specifically. There are other ant-Jedi in Star Wars who aren’t considered Sith. Kylo Ren, for one, was not technically a Sith despite swinging around a crimson blade. The lightsaber in The Acolyte trailer could belong to one of the Knights of Ren, a Nightsister, or any other number of non-Sith dark-side users.

Multiple Examples Through Out Star Wars

Another option is that the red lightsaber belongs to someone in league with the Sith but not an official Sith. Asajj Ventress from Star Wars: The Clone Wars is a perfect example. Count Dooku trained her as his assassin, but he never actually considered her a true Sith, which is why she didn’t get a Darth title.

Speaking of which, why do we still call him Count Dooku when his Sith name, Darth Tyranus, is so much freakin cooler?

The Red Lightsaber

Star Wars offers a lot of options for how The Acolyte could play out that don’t break canon. The owner of the red lightsaber could be a fallen Jedi like Count Dooku, who never actually hooked up with the Sith and is just doing their own thing. Or it could be a Sith Lord, and maybe all of the Jedi who witness the red lightsaber flying through the air in the trailer wind up dead before they can tell anyone.

Too Early To Judge The Acolyte

After all Rogue One did set the precedent of killing off all of your main characters in order to make your story fit in with the established lore. We know death hasn’t exactly been a Star Wars thing in the age of Filoni, but maybe The Acolyte is going to be the first Disney + series with real stakes.

Whatever explanation The Acolyte comes up with for why a red lightsaber is floating around during a time of Sith-less peace and quiet, fans should at least find out what it is before crying about the show breaking canon. Besides, if Whale Face were so smart, he would have escaped Order 66 instead of letting the clones turn him into an ambergris smear on the bridge on Mygeeto.

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