You thought you were safe. 12 years had passed. You imagined that Jar Jar Binks died with the universally despised prequel trilogy, never to rear his ugly head or even uglier faux-Caribbean patois ever again. George Lucas had trolled us like a pro, and yes, we took the bait — but now it was over, dead and buried.
Think again, though, because the new canon novel Star Wars: Aftermath — Empire's End revives Jar Jar in a one-off "interlude" chapter which exists seemingly just to update the world on what became of the Gungan following the rise of the Empire — but which could also be read as a hint, depending on how deranged you like your #StarWars theories, that Jar Jar actually trained Supreme Leader Snoke.
First, some context. You may remember a Reddit thread from October 2015 which collected a fairly terrifying amount of evidence to suggest that Jar Jar Binks had been a Sith collaborator during the entire prequel trilogy, his deception never discovered.
Among said evidence — Jar Jar's battlefield skills seem purposely disguised as "blind luck," but in fact are clearly a learned technique modelled on kung fu and designed to throw off the enemy; he possesses Jedi stealth; despite outwardly being a complete idiot, his rise in power is rapid; and he is somehow able to convince the entire galaxy to abandon democracy in a suspicious manner reminiscent of Jedi mind control (see the clip below). The suggestion? He was working with Palpatine all along.
It became a big deal on the internet, probably because it was just crazy enough to be plausibly true, and now the Jar Jar chapter of Aftermath — Empire's End adds extra credence to the theory. When we check in with the Gungan, he's been ostracized by his own people and is loathed by much of the galaxy for facilitating Palpatine's rise. He's now a street clown in Naboo, performing tricks for the entertainment of kids.
More Snoke insanity:
- Is Supreme Leader Snoke Into The Dark Art Of Essence Transfer?
- Everything We Learned About Snoke In 'Star Wars: Aftermath'
- Wait, What If Snoke Himself Is 'The Last Jedi'?
One such child is a badly-disfigured oprhan, Mapo, whose "scar tissue runs up from his jaw, over the hole that used to be his ear, and to the scalp." This kid has endured a truly shitty life, but it's alright, because now he has Jar Jar. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) Jar Jar's offer to "teach" Mapo could be an innocent act of kindness designed to offer the boy hope... but it could also be something much, much darker.
"My teachin yousa, pallo. Wesa maken the whole galaxy smilin, huh?"
Chuck Wendig's novel doesn't take us any further with that particular storyline, but the tinfoil theorist in me wants to believe we were introduced to Mapo, and forced to endure another cringeworthy encounter with Jar Jar, for a reason. And, just for the record, guess who else has a deformed ear...
Could it be that the young orphan on Naboo would grow up to become none other than the mysterious Supreme Leader Snoke?
If we're going to drag this back into the realm of reality, it's probably much more likely that Jar Jar's fairly undignified downfall — influential senator to homeless clown in the space of one year, really? — is nothing but an act of creative revenge on the author's part. It's even made clear that while the kids of Naboo love Jar Jar, the adults loathe him, which isn't the subtlest of mirrors to audience's divided reactions.
Personally, I think it's pretty unlikely that the creative powers at Disney would allow any Star Wars novel to spill crucial details about Snoke's origins, considering so few people will actually read it. The big reveal will happen on the big screen, not on the page. Still, it's an interesting idea which might retroactively lend at least some degree of usefulness to the monstrously awful character of Jar Jar Binks.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi hits theaters December 15, 2017.
Should the Darth Jar Jar theory be buried, or could he really have had a role to play in the creation of Supreme Leader Snoke?