What Qimir’s Jedi Past Means for THE ACOLYTE

Spoiler Alert

“You speak as if you were a Jedi.”
“I was. A long time ago.”

The Acolyte‘s sixth episode confirmed what its previous installment only hinted at: Qimir was once a member of the Jedi Order. The powerful dark side user’s past means the Jedi helped create the very enemy who will help destroy them in the future. It also makes Qimir even more dangerous than we thought. Qimir has an institutional knowledge of his enemy and a personal reason to hate the Jedi. More troubling is that Qimir also has an intimate understanding of the fear and anger that former Jedi Padawan Osha also carries. That gives him a huge advantage in his attempts to recruit her as his new apprentice.

Qimir looks up with his helmet behind him on a table on The Acolyte

Qimir might talk like a Sith— and resemble a Knight of Ren—but he’s long shown a deep understanding of the Jedi Order. Now we know that’s because he was a Jedi with a Master “a really long time ago.” His time in the Order showed him the limits of being a Jedi and ultimately pushed Qimir to the dark side on The Acolyte.

Their methods are why he says Osha can no longer use her immense powers. “The Jedi teach there’s only one way to access the Force,” Qimir said. “If you don’t do it their way, it fades.” But Qimir knows there’s another way. He told Osha, “Below the surface of consciousness are powerful emotions. Anger. Fear. Loss. Desire.”

Osha called that “the path to the dark side,” and as all Star Wars fans know, she’s correct. Qimir didn’t even disagree with her. He simply called that “semantics,” because what the Jedi see as “dark,” The Acolyte‘s Qimir sees as freedom. That’s what Qimir said he wants in The Acolyte episode five, a freedom to use his power as he sees fit rather than how the Jedi say he can. He wants the freedom to live the way he wants.

Qimir hands Osha a bowl of food on The Acolyte

Qimir also wants other things, including revenge. Osha asked about the scars on his back and Qimir didn’t deny they came from his former Jedi Master. That person “threw him away,” the same way he says the Jedi threw Osha away while making her think she failed them. In reality, Qimir says the Jedi couldn’t deal with the powerful emotions each lives with. Those feelings make Qimir and Osha a threat to the Jedi way.

(Who was the Jedi Master who gave Qimir his weird-shaped scar on The Acolyte? It’s not straight like the lightsaber slashes he gave to Wookiee Jedi Master Kelnacca. Its vaguely V-shaped pattern looks more like the kind of scar you’d get from a whip. And this episode saw Master Vernestra use her unique lightsaber whip on screen for the first time. She also clearly held something back about her fears over the Jedi slaughter on Khofar, the latest shady action she’s taken on the show.)

A naked Qimir from behind with his large scar on display on The Acolyte

Qimir also wants something else on The Acolyte: “the power of two.” For that, he needs an acolyte. He thought that could be Mae, but he was wrong about her. Mae only wants revenge. He wants something more. Now Qimir thinks he’s found a kindred spirit in a fellow former Jedi Padawan who lost “everything” on The Acolyte. That loss has always held Osha back. Qimir wants her to see that loss is what “finally” set her free, just as he is free. And that freedom offers the opportunity for Osha to see that her immense strength in the Force is hers and hers alone, not the Jedi Order’s as they taught her to believe.

It’s an enticing offer to someone carrying a lifetime of anger, fear, loss, and desire, even someone “not so easily corruptible” as Osha. (Qimir didn’t even need to read her mind to know what she holds in her soul. Nor did she need to draw a lightsaber to his neck for him to know he was right.)

Osha holds a red lightsaber to Qimir's neck on The Acolyte

She’s not immune to his pitch. On The Acolyte, Qimir is offering her the very same path the powerful, heroic Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker will walk someday. Anyone can fall to the dark side, especially when a charming, manipulative dark side user with ulterior motives knows how to appeal to their biggest insecurities.

No one knows Osha’s insecurities as well as her fellow former Jedi Padawan, Qimir. He can reach her in a way Sol never could.

Palpatine looks at Anakin at the opera in Revenge of the Sith

If Qimir can use his Jedi past to recruit Osha to the dark side on The Acolyte, the power of two will give Master and Acolyte the power to destroy the entire Jedi Order. We know because more than a century after we learned about Qimir’s past, that’s exactly what his fellow dark side users will do.

Mikey Walsh is a staff writer at Nerdist and Manny Jacinto superfan which makes him at least willing to listen to Qimir. You can follow him on Twitter and  Bluesky at @burgermike. And also anywhere someone is ranking the Targaryen kings.

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