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17 Unanswered Questions About The 'Star Wars' Universe That ‘Rise Of Skywalker’ Didn’t Clear Up 

Jordan Breeding
Updated January 2, 2020 5.8k votes 866 voters 27.2k views 17 items

List Rules Vote up the questions that you wish 'Episode IX' would have cleared up.

The epic Skywalker saga has finally concluded, but that doesn't mean there aren't tons of unanswered questions after Rise of Skywalker. Many fans were hoping all of their long-gestating speculations would finally be confirmed or denied, but while many dangling plot threads were snipped, the filmmakers didn't quite land the X-wing in every scenario.

There are lingering queries from every era of Star Wars. In fact, there are several unanswered questions from Rise of Skywalker itself, making things even more complicated than before. Unfortunately, it's unlikely viewers will ever get the full story without taking George Lucas out for a nice seafood dinner.

1
How Did The Emperor Come Back To Life?
How Did The Emperor Come... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 17 Unanswered Questions About The 'Star Wars' Universe That ‘Rise Of Skywalker’ Didn’t Clear Up
Photo: Return of the Jedi/20th Century Fox

Rise of Skywalker gets a lot of mileage out of a new Force power that allows Force-wielders to heal life-threatening wounds. It even appears possible to borderline resurrect those who have perished. 

But that still doesn't really explain how Palpatine is still alive four decades later. In Return of the Jedi, Palpatine is thrown down an impossibly far shaft and explodes. As if that isn't enough, the entire Death Star also explodes, presumably obliterating every last drop of Palpatine blood.

Even if there's the power to rebuild Palpatine's tiny parts into the semi-functioning zombie we see in Rise of Skywalker, who is the one doing that? Rey doesn't resurrect herself - Kylo has to do it, and even then the effort is so great he himself perishes. Remember, Rey says she's able to heal by transferring some of her life force into that big sand snake. Kylo has apparently given Rey all of his life force.

So the question remains: Who gave Palpatine the life force necessary to come back to life? And how did they even manage to find his body parts to begin the process?

Does this still nag at you?
2
When And How Did Palpatine Have A Son?
When And How Did Palpati... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 17 Unanswered Questions About The 'Star Wars' Universe That ‘Rise Of Skywalker’ Didn’t Clear Up
Photo: Revenge of the Sith/20th Century Fox

Thanks to Rise of Skywalker, it is now officially canon that Palpatine is a father. Given the timeline, it's safe to assume Palpatine started a family right around the fall of the Republic. What's weird, though, is how he might have been intimate with somebody without knowing if they became pregnant or somehow lost that child after the fact. You'd think the emperor and Lord of the Sith would be a bit more careful about who he sleeps with and also probably use protection. Or, if he knew about his child, he'd be better about keeping tabs on who could possibly become one of the most powerful Jedi of all time given his lineage.

Even more interestingly, what circumstances led to that son living on Jakku, getting married, having a child of his own, and then abandoning that child to save her from Palpatine?

Does this still nag at you?
3
How Did Maz Kanata Get Luke's Lightsaber?
How Did Maz Kanata Get L... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 17 Unanswered Questions About The 'Star Wars' Universe That ‘Rise Of Skywalker’ Didn’t Clear Up
Photo: The Force Awakens/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Maz Kanata is introduced in Force Awakens. It's immediately clear she must have been a big player in the Rebellion at some point because she is holding onto Luke Skywalker's lightsaber. How she got it is said to be a "story for another time," but that time apparently will never come.

How did this seemingly random figure get the lightsaber of the most powerful Jedi in the galaxy? Also, why? Luke gave up being a Jedi, so it makes sense he might not want his saber, but did he just hand it to Kanata before he left, or did he sell it at an intergalactic pawn shop and Kanata happened to notice it was on sale?

Does this still nag at you?
4
Who Made A Dagger Specifically To Find The Emperor's Throne Room In The Death Star Ruins?
Who Made A Dagger Specif... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 17 Unanswered Questions About The 'Star Wars' Universe That ‘Rise Of Skywalker’ Didn’t Clear Up
Photo: The Rise of Skywalker/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

A big part of Rise of Skywalker revolves around the Resistance rushing to find a Sith Wayfinder that would allow our heroes to locate the Sith planet where the reanimated corpse of Palpatine is residing. Fortunately for them, they find a dagger with Sith written on it that apparently shows where the Wayfinder is.

Again, the dagger doesn't say where the planet is - it merely says where to find the Wayfinder. Specifically, it says it's in the ruins of the emperor's throne room on Death Star II. In fact, when Rey holds the dagger up to the ruins of the Death Star, the jagged blade lines up perfectly and shows where she needs to go.

Who made that dagger? It's written in a language that is apparently unlawful to speak (and is an essentially obsolete language), and it has to have been made after Return of the Jedi because how else would it match the Death Star detritus? Did Palpatine make it? If so, why?

Does this still nag at you?