We haven't got long to go now until [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158) is finally released, and anticipation has never been higher. Thanks to numourous hints, teasers, and leaks, we've actually got a good idea of what to expect from Star Wars 7, and we already know quite a bit about some characters, like Kylo Ren. Of course, a large proportion of the plot remains a mystery, with major players like Andy Serkis' Supreme Leader Snoke's role under wraps. But recent hints reveal we might know more about him than we think!
A Major Dark Side Power
Andy Serkis has a history of leaning towards the villainous side with his roles, so even back when his casting was announced fans assumed he would play one of the bad guys. Not a lot is known about Snoke, aside from the fact that he's a CGI created character, and definitely won't be siding with the Rebellion.
However, when talking about Kylo Ren, J.J. Abrams recently offered some tantalising tidbits about Supreme Leader Snoke, which tell a larger story...
"Kylo Ren is not a Sith. He works under Supreme Leader Snoke, who is a powerful figure on the Dark Side of the Force."
It's easy to just assume that all the Star Wars 7 baddies are one entity, but in fact they seem to be an allegiance of several different factions. Let's count them out.
- The Grand Moffs: remnants of the old Empire, the Grand Moffs were the Emperor's governors and controlled large sections of the galaxy. As revealed in the newest teaser trailer, the Moffs are still a force to be reckoned with, and the comic Shattered Empire detailed how they took control of some star systems even after the Battle of Endor.
- The First Order: the main muscle of the Force Awakens villains, the First Order are comprised of the old Stormtrooper army, but have broadened their ranks to include new soldiers like Finn, and are lead by Captain Phasma and the General.
- The Knights Of Ren: this faction is much more mysterious, but we know that they are a Dark Side organisation from which Darth Vadar fanboy Kylo Ren hails. They have a collection of Sith relics and are in search of the legendary Skywalker lightsaber.
Until now, we were unsure about how which group Supreme Leader Snoke has alliances with, but Abrams comment definitely suggests that he is in fact the leader of the Knights Of Ren themselves.
This also means that Snoke isn't the kind of grounded straight shooter like the First Order - he's probably Force Sensitive and uses the Dark Side to his advantage. And if new rumours are anything to go by, he's been a major player from before the original trilogy ended...
Corrupting The Senate
The events leading up to Star Wars 7 are of great importance, and many comics and books in the Journey To The Force Awakens and Shattered Empire series are currently being published to fill in the blanks. But thanks to MakingStarWars, we've got a sneak peak of the story that even the books don't include, which contains vital information about Supreme Leader Snoke!
According to the website, Snoke started to garner power within the Galactic Senate before the Empire fell, forming allegiances and getting senators for different systems on his side. For the time being, he was strengthening Emperor Palpatine's hold on the senate, but when Palpatine was killed, all that power went straight to Snoke.
Apparently, the Senate remained in place even after the Battle of Endor, and Snoke used his sway to ensure that the First Order couldn't be attacked by the Rebellion forces, as long as they stayed in the Outer Rim. Naturally, General Leia Organa takes issue with this, and makes sure the Rebellion forces stay strong and armed, which causes a divide in the Senate that later leads to the First Order vs Rebellion conflict that happens in Star Wars 7.
Therefore, The Force Awakens details the events of a new Galactic Civil War, as the two sides clash and the First Order use their new superweapon: the Starkiller Base, which is capable of destroying entire solar systems.
Again, this is just a rumour, but it certainly would explain Snoke's role in Star Wars 7. However, it clashes somewhat with Abrams' hint that Snoke leads the Knights Of Ren... so which is true? Be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!