Star Wars: The Acolyte trailer breakdown: 5 things you might have missed

A hooded Indara sees someone off camera while she sits in a diner in Star Wars: The Acolyte
Star Wars: The Acolyte's official trailer is full of mysteries. (Image credit: Lucasfilm)

Potential spoilers follow for The Acolyte on Disney Plus.

Trust no-one. That seems to be the main takeaway from Star Wars: The Acolyte's latest suspense-driven trailer, which traveled at lightspeed to arrive in time for Star Wars Day 2024 (May 4).

Almost two months after The Acolyte's first trailer teased an ominous disturbance in the Force, and less than a week after an early Star Wars Day teaser hinted at a fan-favorite link to the prequel movies, a ton of new footage was debuted online for the highly anticipated series. Take a look at the Disney Plus show's official trailer below:

There's plenty to unpack from The Acolyte's newest action-packed and mystery-filled teaser, and I suspect you might have overlooked some key details that give us some ideas about its morally gray characters, overarching plot, and ties to wider Star Wars lore. With that in mind, I've picked out five things you may have missed from the latest trailer to speculate on what they could tease. This is final warning: possible spoilers for The Acolyte follow!

A towering temple

A screenshot of Coruscant's Jedi Temple in Star Wars: The Acolyte on Disney Plus

The Jedi Temple looms large over Coruscant during the High Republic era. (Image credit: Lucasfilm/Disney Plus)

The trailer's first noteworthy aspect – outside of confirmation (via a character voiceover) that someone is hunting down and killing Jedi – is just how much the Jedi Temple looms over the rest of Coruscant. Remember, this show takes place during Star Wars' High Republic era, which is when the Jedi were at the height of their powers. 

Considering how much these so-called peacekeepers held themselves in, well, high regard, it's unsurprising that the Jedi Order's headquarters stands head and shoulders over every other building. This changes as the centuries pass, with Coruscant undergoing a construction transformation as new places are built in and around the Jedi Temple. That makes it appear as if the building has 'shrunk' (a thematic symbol for how the Jedi's influence decreases throughout the Star Wars timeline), but it's just that other properties have been erected at the same height as it.

Sith sympathy

Qimir looks out from behind a doorway in Star Wars: The Acolyte

Qimir is one of many morally complex characters we'll see in The Acolyte. (Image credit:

The Acolyte's first teaser, which was released in March, was accompanied by a number of character profiles (on that provided some key intel on the major players who'll appear.

One individual whose role is still something of a mystery, though, is Manny Jacinto's Qimir. His character profile only tells us that he's a "former smuggler who now makes his living as a trader, procuring unusual things and enjoying a life of leisure". That makes it sound like the roguish ex-criminal has turned his life around.

Based on the series' latest trailer, though, it appears that Qimir has done anything but – and, even worse, he could be a Sith sympathizer. At this point in Star Wars history, Dark Side wielders are believed to have been wiped out, which makes their return a huge problem for the Jedi (more on this later).

Okay, so how do we know Qimir is empathetic to the Sith's cause? Because of a single line of dialog – "Peace is a lie" – that he utters around the 0:20 mark. This simple quote is one of the main tenets of The Sith Code, which was written by Sorzus Syn and taught by iconic Sith Lord Darth Bane. 

Some fans have even gone as far as to suggest that Qimir is a Sith himself. While that could be one of many shock twists that showrunner Leslye Headland as hinted at in various interviews, I think Qimir being a Sith Lord is too much of a leap to make from a plot and/or character perspective. I'm open to being proved wrong, though!

Distraction tactics

A close up shot of the Force witches seen in Star Wars: The Acolyte

Is there more than meets the eye with The Acolyte's Force witches? (Image credit: Lucasfilm/Disney Plus)

The Acolyte – one of many new Star Wars shows and movies set to arrive in the coming years – is going to give us something completely different from previous projects. Indeed, it's being billed as a mystery-thriller, which is a far cry from the usual sci-fi fare we've become accustomed to with Lucasfilm's iconic franchise.

As I mentioned, there'll be plenty of twists and turns in this detective-style series, and it appears that the show's newest trailer is already trying to throw us off the scent. With a voiceover from Rebecca Ferguson's Vernestra Rwah – "I sense this is only a small part of a larger plan" – accompanying footage of a new coven of Force-sensitive witches (led by Jodie Turner-Smith's Mother Aniseya), The Acolyte's latest teaser suggests this group will be its secondary antagonists. The fact that they use their abilities to hypnotize Dean-Charles Chapman's unnamed Jedi at the 0:55 mark lends further proof to this fan theory.

But what if it's all a misdirect? What if Mother Aniseya's coven is actually trying to reveal an important plot point to Chapman's character that'll help the Jedi track down Amandla Stenberg's Mae and her alleged Sith Master? True, it would be a strange narrative decision for these witches to help the Jedi – given what Aniseya says in The Acolyte's first teaser, it seems that they're largely neutral in this never-ending conflict between the Light Side and Dark Side. That said, I wouldn't rule them out of aiding the Jedi if it means that balance between both sides of the Force continues to be maintained.

A planetary connection to The Last Jedi?

A screenshot of an island and ocean-filled planet in Star Wars: The Acolyte's official trailer

Could we return to Ahch-To in Star Wars' latest TV series? (Image credit: Lucasfilm/Disney Plus)

2017's Star Wars: Episode VIII The Last Jedi is arguably the most divisive movie in the franchise's near-50-year history. But, while plenty has been said and written (some good, some less so) about the Rian Johnson-directed flick, it did give us an entirely new location to travel to: Ahch-To, aka the birthplace of the Jedi Order and home to the ancient Jedi Texts.

Considering how vital this planet is to the Jedi's origins, fans believe that we'll return to said world during The Acolyte. That speculation has been fuelled by blink-and-you'll-miss-it moments in the show's new trailer, which show off environments that are eerily reminiscent of Ahch-To's ocean-covered and island-laden surface. 

Could we journey once more to a planet that birthed the Jedi way back in 25,025 BBY (Before the Battle of Yavin)? If it holds the secret to some world-shattering revelations about the Force wielders, I wouldn't discount us doing so.

Fan-ning the Abeloth flames

An enhanced image of the helmet-wearing Sith Lord in Star Wars: The Acolyte

That's one mashed up helmet you've got there, mate. (Image credit: Lucasfilm/Disney Plus)

The last (and arguably most crowd-pleasing) moment in the official trailer is the shadowy Sith figure who appears in its final scene.

Moments after igniting one of the Sith's classic red-bladed lightsabers, we get a much better (but not completely clear) look at the show's apparent big bad – and, my oh my, are they sporting a gnarly helmet. Not only does it look like a callback to the headgear worn by the Knights of Ren in Star Wars' sequel film trilogy, but it also teases a major tie to Abeloth, an extremely powerful, immortal, and evil Force entity who has ties to Star Wars' three Mortis Gods. The Mortis trio were hinted at in Star Wars: Ahsoka and appeared in the Clone Wars series.

A mortal woman who, in basic terms, was transformed into the ancient, terror-inducing, Dark Force-wielding being by the Font of Power and Pool of Knowledge, Abeloth is not to be trifled with. Given her immense power, it's no surprise that she has plenty of fans within the Sith, either – and it seems that The Acolyte's unnamed Sith Lord is a particularly huge supporter of her work.

How so? Because of the giant, teeth-like grin that's etched onto the side of their helmet. Abeloth is usually depicted as an individual with a giant, carved, Joker-style smile that stretches from one ear to the other to show off her razer-sharp gnashers. What better way to pay tribute to someone you idolize than engraving your helmet with a similar aesthetic?

There are plenty more reveals to come – we've already been treated to a confirmed look at Vector starships, which the Jedi used during the High Republic era, in this poster for The Acolyte – in the show. For one, I want to know how the Sith infiltrates the Jedi Order, as one of its stars Dafne Keen exclusively told me in December 2022.

Regardless, I can't wait to see how it'll bridge the gap between Star Wars' expanded universe and the prequel movies. June 4th can't come soon enough for one of 2024's potentially best Disney Plus shows.

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Senior Entertainment Reporter

As TechRadar's senior entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You'll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.

An NCTJ-accredited journalist, Tom also writes reviews, analytical articles, opinion pieces, and interview-led features on the biggest franchises, actors, directors and other industry leaders. You may see his quotes pop up in the odd official Marvel Studios video, too, such as this Moon Knight TV spot.

Away from work, Tom can be found checking out the latest video games, immersing himself in his favorite sporting pastime of football, reading the many unread books on his shelf, staying fit at the gym, and petting every dog he comes across. Got a scoop, interesting story, or an intriguing angle on the latest news in entertainment? Feel free to drop him a line.