Trying to escape the shadow of adversaries like Darth Vader and Emperor Palapatine, in The Force Awakens Disney presented audiences with a new terrifying bad guy to headline the current #StarWars trilogy: Supreme Leader Snoke. He raised quite a few questions: Where did he come from? Why is he trying to destroy the Republic? And most importantly, who in the galaxy is he?
Keeping up with Star Wars's penchant for secrecy, the gigantic baddie has been shrouded in a thick veil of mystery, so those questions have been hard to answer. Last week, we learned that #TheLastJedi would not be delving into the character too much, which got us worried by the prospect of having to wait at least four years to learn what he's all about.
Fortunately, we finally have an answer for the most important question: Snoke's identity. That's right, one more layer of Snoke has been peeled off. #Lucasfilm executive Pablo Hidalgo recently gave fans some answers that finally clear up Snoke's identity.
Don't Be Fooled, Snoke Is Not A Human
Before we fully dive into the answer, some clarification is needed. Hidalgo tweeted out an excerpt from the novelization of #TheForceAwakens. In the caption, he stated he wanted to clear things up for fans after being asked so many times about Snoke's race: Snoke is not a human.
The excerpt from the novelization shown in the tweet reads:
"Seated on the raised platform that was the focus of the chamber was the blue-tinted holo of Supreme Leader Snoke. Tall and gaunt, he was humanoid but not human."
Admittedly, that was not much of a surprise. While #Snoke being human was a definite possibility, his appearance told a slightly different story. Still, it's nice to have confirmation on that. Following the clarification, Hidalgo proceeded to drop the biggest clue to Snoke's identity.
Stop The Theories, Snoke's Not A Character We've Met Before
As I mentioned before, with how crucial the Supreme Leader is to the current Star Wars trilogy, people have long speculated about his identity. Perhaps the most common theory has been that the villain is somebody we've already met in the franchise. To give you an idea of how out there the theories get, Yoda, Jar Jar Binks and even a disfigured Mace Windu are just a few names in a long list of potential candidates that have been thrown around to support the claim.
But Hidalgo revealed a pivotal piece of information: During the development process of TFA, #Lucasfilm went back and forth for a while to decide Snoke's alien race:
“Snoke's humanity is set in stone because that sentence got published. He varied a lot in terms of species and gender until production started.”
Why is that important, you ask? Well, Lucasfilm's indecisiveness regarding the character's background tells us he is not someone we've already met in the Star Wars franchise. That's right, Supreme Leader Snoke is a completely new and separate entity.
So with that frustrating question finally answered, there's something worth pointing out.
Sometimes Things Are Just Things –– Even In The Star Wars Universe
Ever since Darth Vader's iconic plot twist in The Empire Strikes Back, fans have loved to speculate on bigger meanings behind almost every single element in the Star Wars franchise. While there are certainly some plot points that lend themselves to that type of scrutiny (for example, Rey's parentage), there are others that we shouldn't spend so much time and effort on in trying to find a hidden meaning.
Snoke is a great example of that. Being a dark figure in a dark room with unknown powers and a fuzzy origin doesn't make the character a reincarnated or returning version of a previous player in the galaxy far, far away. Ultimately, Snoke is just... well, Snoke.
Does that mean the excitement behind him and his motivations for future films in the trilogy is all gone? Not at all. There have been some pieces of information that tease a truly promising character in the making. In the novelization of The Force Awakens, for example, we learn he's witnessed every single event in the Star Wars saga unfold: From the fall of the #Jedi to the birth of the New Republic.
Furthermore, Chuck Wendig's Aftermath: Empire's End novel teased a dark being watching from afar in the dreaded Unknown Regions. The being was so powerful that he managed to slip by Darth Vader's radar and disturb the unscrupulous and ruthless Emperor:
"The Emperor was convinced that something waited for him out there — some origin of the Force, some dark presence formed of malevolent substance. He said he could feel the waves of it radiating out now that the way was clear. The Emperor called it a signal — conveniently one that only he could hear. Even his greatest enforcer, Vader, seemed oblivious to it, and Vader also claimed mastery over the dark Force, did he not? Rax believed Palpatine had gone mad."
While the dark being's identity was never outright given, there were enough clues scattered throughout the story to figure out it was Snoke. Of course, keep in mind that, even with those two pieces of the puzzle, there are still a number of unanswered questions regarding the character, mysteries that make him a compelling character and baddie in his own right, without the need of an already-built backstory or legacy.
There's something very special and refreshing in #Disney and Lucasfilm taking the chance to introduce a brand-new character instead of riding on the reputation and impact of a previous player in the franchise. With the teases shown above, Snoke has the potential to become one of the greatest and scariest Star Wars characters we've seen yet. For that, I'm incredibly excited to see where he goes next.
The Last Jedi will hit theaters on December 15, 2018.
What do think about Snoke being a new character in the Star Wars universe? Let me know in the comments!