|| ''What wouldst thou know, my Queen?''
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Emperor Sheev Palpatine (also known as Darth Sidious) is the main antagonist of the Star Wars franchise.
Starting out as a senator, he was elected the Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, and later became the Sith Emperor of the Galactic Empire, after the Jedi's destruction; until he was killed by his redeemed apprentice, Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, when he tried to kill the latter's son, Luke. However, he came back to life years later, taking control of the First Order and becoming Kylo Ren's new master.
Palpatine was trained by Darth Plageuis. After learning everything he knew, he killed him while he was sleeping and proceeded to take up Darth Maul as an apprentice.
At first, Palpatine appeared to be an amiable politician and a harmless but well-meaning individual. This was a guise used to fool those in the Galactic Senate that he had the best intentions for the galaxy.
However, in truth, Palpatine was actually an arrogant, ambitious, power-hungry, and machiavellian schemer; he desired absolute power and rule out of a deluded belief that he was above everything else. Despite his arrogance, he was extremely intelligent, patient, cunning, and manipulative.
After Palpatine had successively gained full control of the Galactic Republic and turned it into the Galactic Empire, he abandoned his public persona; he then openly became a tyrannical ruler, despite this, he never revealed that he was the Dark Lord of the Sith to the public; as only his most trusted followers were aware of his Sith identity, some of his commanding officers, such as Wilhuff Tarkin, also suspected that he was a Sith, but were unable to prove it. He was also very clever about hiding his face, using holograms and decoys that walked about in public that resembled his Pre-Imperial appearance to make it appear as though he had recovered from his attack by Mace Windu and often walked about in public.
Palpatine was the only Sith Master/Dark Lord of the Sith in the history of the galaxy to achieve the ultimate goal of the Sith Order; to eradicate the Jedi Order and bring the galaxy under the rule of the Sith to restore the Sith Empire.
Palpatine also greatly desired to become immortal; his master had once had the ability to keep others from dying using the power of the dark side of the Force, Palpatine learned this same ability and desired to use a similar power, if one did exist, to increase his lifespan so that he could rule the galaxy forever, with one such scheme involving the creation of a Force-made virus, called Project: Blackwing, however, Palpatine's searches for such secrets of the Sith were ultimately fruitless (as the Blackwing virus turned it's hosts into undead zombies and had to be eradicated) and he never found a way to become immortal, however, despite his desire for immortality, he was not above gambling his own life in order to ensure he turned someone to the dark side. This was especially evident with Anakin Skywalker, where he casually asked if Anakin was going to kill him and then proceeded to heavily imply that doing so would draw him into the dark side, and later with his son, Luke Skywalker, where he repeatedly goaded him into trying to kill him so he'd turn to the dark side. On a related note, just prior to his duel with Yoda and stating the latter won't stop his plans due to Darth Vader, he also expressed some eagerness at the potential of Vader becoming far stronger than even himself. Regardless, Palpatine would later achieve his goal of immortality in a sense by being able to revive himself from death, but the cost was immense; leaving him blind and partially rotted, unable to walk and undead. It was revealed in the film's novelization of The Rise of Skywalker that Palpatine's resurrection was aided by his followers in the cult known as the Sith Eternal, who utilized both the Dark side of the Force and powerful technology to help revive their master and liege lord.
Like most practitioners of the dark side of the Force, Palpatine was susceptible to fear to the point of being paranoid, this paranoia was extensive to the point where he feared the power of other Force-users and had them hunted down and either killed or turned to his side as loyal servants. However, his paranoia was never extensive to the point of being cowardly; as he felt little fear as he was not afraid of getting into direct confrontations with exceptionally powerful opponents; such as Mace Windu and Yoda respectively, in some cases even gamble his life for the prospect of turning exceptionally powerful Force-users to the dark side. Fear ultimately proved to be Palpatine's weakness as it caused him to constantly plot and devise schemes against his enemies, which ultimately lead to the unexpected creation of the Rebel Alliance and the eventual downfall of the Galactic Empire.
During the time of the Galactic Empire (prior to its downfall) Palpatine was not very forgiving, as he would kill his allies or subordinates, for failing him even once (with the exception of Vader and his most trusted followers) as he had no tolerance for failure; while his former apprentice was able to tolerate failure to a certain extent; Vader once stated that Palpatine was not as forgiving as him.
Despite his evil nature, Palpatine was a known patron of the arts; this was evidenced in the craftsmanship of his lightsabers and in the many statues and sculptures present in his office, during his time as Chancellor. However, he abandoned most of his love of the arts when he became the Sith Emperor in favor of expanding his power.
At one point in an interview, Palpatine's actor, Ian McDiarmid claimed Palpatine was pure evil, only Snoke was superior to Palpatine in regards to evil; as he was a much darker person than the Dark Lord of the Sith ever was. However it's discovered that Snoke was his creation.
Despite his accomplishments - or perhaps because of them, Palpatine was arrogant, manipultive, cruel, hateful and extremely wrathful to the point of occasionally underestimating his opponent(s) - such as the Rebel Alliance, as he paid no heed to the strength and determination of the Rebellion, mainly as a result of the few number of Force-users in their group; such as Ahsoka Tano, Kanan Jarrus, Ezra Bridger, and Luke Skywalker respectively. Like Yoda, he also believed that once an individual falls to the dark side, they could never be swayed to return to the light side - this was evident in his failure to perceive the strength/love Anakin had for his family and the effect that his son would have on him. This arrogance and lack of insight of his would eventually lead to Palpatine's downfall and death at the hands of the redeemed Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader; when he attempted to kill Anakin's son, Luke. His arrongance was also the result of his final downfall against his own granddaughter, Rey. Her abilities and determination proved to be superior to his, and despite his attempts to turn her to his side and then later kill her, he couldn't stop her from disintegrating him with his own Force Lightning.
Powers and Abilities
- The Force: Despite his old age, Palpatine was immensely powerful and had an amazingly strong connection to the Force; indeed, he was the most powerful Sith and overall the second most powerful Force-user that had ever existed; second only to Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker respectively at their peaks. Palpatine's force powers was rivaled only by Yoda at his peak. Palpatine's skills with the dark side of the Force were also such that he almost never needed to rely on his lightsabers, and generally believed himself above using such weapons. In addition to this, Palpatine believed the source of his powers existed within the Unknown Regions of the galaxy and longed to find it.
- Telekinesis: Palpatine was very proficient in Telekinesis, utilizing it either as an offensive attack or simply as a means of displaying his power, the latter being most prevalent when he used the ability to remove Luke Skywalker's binders aboard the second Death Star while barely lifting a finger.
- Force Push: Palpatine utilized Force Push to send his opponents flying through the air, causing them serious injury or temporarily incapacitating them/knocked them unconscious.
- Force Pull: Palpatine utilized Force Pull to pull his opponents or objects towards him.
- Force Choke: Palpatine utilized Force Choke to either weaken, kill or intimidate his opponents. He was also able to choke targets that were in another room, or even on another planet, by knowing their location relative to himself, he was able to choke Dooku, who was on Serenno, from Coruscant while talking to him on a hologram.
- Force Grip: Palpatine utilized Force Grip to lift his opponents off the ground and into the air, sometimes by the neck, to immobilize them.
- Force Throw: Palpatine utilized Force Throw to cause objects, and even individuals, to be hurled toward a target at an astounding velocity.
- Tutaminis: Palpatine utilized Tutaminis to dissipate concentrated energy; such as blasterbolts or Force lightning.
- Force Deflection: Palpatine utilized Force Deflection to redirect incoming attacks, from blasterbolts to Force lightning, with or without his lightsaber. He was able to block several shots fired at him by the Rebel spy Eneb Ray with his bare hand when the latter was attempting to assassinate him.
- Force Drain: Palpatine utilized Force Drain to drain life-force energy from other individuals.
- Mind Trick: Palpatine utilized Mind Trick to control the minds of other sentient beings, however, it did not work on individuals who have very strong wills.
- Force Vision: Palpatine utilized Force Vision, to have visions of the past, the present, and the future; however, like all Force-users, his visions were not always clear or sometimes has visions even when he was not utilizing this power at will.
- Force Sense: Palpatine utilized Force Sense to sense another sentient being's emotions, the future, ripples in the Force caused by momentous or traumatic events, impending danger, and the presence of the light side. However, in Return of the Jedi, for unknown reasons, he was unable to sense the presence of Luke Skywalker, who was on Endor, unlike Darth Vader, who was able to easily sense the presence of his son.
- Force Lightning: Palpatine was a master of Force Lightning, which he used to torture or kill his opponents, making it his most favorite move. Due to his level of power and skill, his lightning possessed greater intensity and power than most who possess the ability, allowing him to potentially cause more greater damage to his target. In the Lords of the Sith novel, he demonstrated the strength of his lightning as being enough to damage machinery, such as a ship's engines, as well as fatally shocking several Lylek's and scorching their blaster resistant carapaces. This power later proved to be his own undoing, as his granddaughter Rey used Luke and Leia's lightsabers to redirect it at him, destroying him completely.
- Force Jump: Palpatine utilized Force Jump to jump or leap at great distances.
- Force Dash: Palpatine utilized Force Dash to move at amazing speeds.
- Telekinesis: Palpatine was very proficient in Telekinesis, utilizing it either as an offensive attack or simply as a means of displaying his power, the latter being most prevalent when he used the ability to remove Luke Skywalker's binders aboard the second Death Star while barely lifting a finger.
- Lightsaber Skills: Despite his frail appearance and old age, Palpatine was incredibly skilled in lightsaber combat and an extremely gifted duelist, he was one of the greatest lightsaber duelists in the history of the galaxy, in fact, the only individual known to have defeated Palpatine in lightsaber combat was Mace Windu, however, in truth, he actually threw the fight in order to further corrupt Anakin Skywalker into killing Mace, which he succeeded at, albeit Anakin became indirectly responsible for Mace's death; in other words, he could have defeated or killed the arrogant Jedi Master at any time he wanted, Palpatine was one of the few known individuals who could fight on par against Yoda, his lightsaber skills were such that he had mastered all the forms of lightsaber combat and could shift from one combat form to another fluidly and without effort, Palpatine's technique and fighting style was a combination of brutal aggression and lethal precision; making him an almost unstoppable opponent, Ironically, despite Palpatine's masterful dueling skills, he was fairly disdainful of lightsaber combat in general, believing the Sith to have grown beyond the need for lightsabers, he also rarely used his lightsabers unless absolutely necessary as they would identify him instantly as a Sith, however, he still proceeded to carry the weapons, as a way of mocking the Jedi. Despite being an exceptionally skilled lightsaber duelist in his own right, Palpatine was ultimately unable to defeat Yoda; as their duel ended in a draw.
- Form I: Palpatine was highly skilled in Shii Cho.
- Form II: Palpatine highly skilled in in Makashi.
- Form III: Palpatine was highly skilled in Soresu.
- Form IV: Palpatine was highly skilled in Ataru.
- Form V: Palpatine was highly skilled in Shien/Djem So.
- Form VI: Palpatine was highly skilled in Niman.
- Form VII: Palpatine was extremely skilled in Juyo/Vaapad.
- Jar'Kai: Palpatine was a master of Jar'Kai.
- Genius-Level Intellect/Master Tactician/Leader/Manipulator: Palpatine was amazingly intelligent and wise; his intelligence and wisdom was rivaled only by Yoda, Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, and Luke Skywalker respectively, as the leader of the Sith Order, he was a highly skilled tactician and a very capable leader, he was very manipulative, as he was able to easily manipulate other individuals directly or indirectly to achieve his goals. Palpatine even managed to manipulate and deceive Anakin, a genius in his own right, into becoming his apprentice and turning him against the Jedi Order.
Weapons and Equipment
Palpatine's valued weapons and possessions were his two red-bladed lightsabers, whose hilts were inlaid with gold-colored Electrum metal and made of Phrik alloy, making them indestructible, even to other lightsabers. The weapons bore the same appearance to one another save for one being coated in an unknown black alloy. Being a patron of the arts, the lightsabers were elegantly crafted with an artisan's skill and were small enough that they could be easily hidden up his sleeves. While in office as Supreme Chancellor, Palpatine always kept one of his lightsabers hidden inside a neuranium statue on his desk in his office in case of emergencies. Both lightsabers were utilized together once in his duel on Mandalore against his former apprentice, Darth Maul, and Maul's brother, Savage Oppress. Though the origin of his lightsabers is unknown, Palpatine probably killed two jedi and corrupted the Kyber crystals within their lightsabers with the dark side of the Force to create his signature weapons, as was implied in Darth Vader #1: The Chosen One Part I, by Marvel Comics.
- First Lightsaber: Palpatine built his first red-bladed lightsaber during his apprenticeship under Darth Plagueis. It would remain in his possession until his death, but it is unknown what happened to it after Palpatine's first death.
- Second Lightsaber: At some point, Palpatine had built a second red-bladed lightsaber. It would remain in his possession until his duel against Mace Windu.
The Phantom Menace
In the prequel trilogy, Palpatine is a middle-aged politician of the Republic who rises to power through deception and treachery. Outwardly, he behaves like a well-intentioned and loyal public servant and supporter of democracy, yet underneath his affable public persona lurks his true identity; Darth Sidious, the Dark Lord of the Sith. He orchestrates the invasion of Naboo through pawns Viceroy Nute Gunray and Gunray's assistant, Rune Haako of the Trade Federation. When Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi arrive on Gunray's ship to negotiate, Palpatine orders their deaths, though Gunray fails to kill them. After Queen Amidala escapes the invasion, Darth Sidious dispatches Darth Maul, his apprentice, to dispose of the Jedi. Pretending to help deal with the invasion as Palpatine, he convinces the Senate to make him the new Chancellor in place of Chancellor Valorum by convincing Amidala to move for a vote of no confidence in Valorum. Soon after, he learns of Queen Amidala's plans to return to Naboo and liberate their people, and dispatches Maul once again to join the subsequent battle. Amidala's plan is risky, but it succeeds in the end. Gunray is captured, the droid army is immobilized, and Darth Maul is defeated. Darth Sidious' plans to take over Naboo have failed for the time being. He is last seen being introduced to Anakin Skywalker, who has just destroyed the Droid Control Ship.
Attack of the Clones
As the Chancellor of the Republic, Palpatine continues in his guise. To replace Darth Maul, Sidious begins training Count Dooku, a man who used to be a Jedi but turned to the dark side, dubbing him Darth Tyrannus. As Palpatine, he sets up security measures to counter the mercenaries attempting to murder Senator Amidala, also lying to Yoda that he fears the thought of an imminent war (in reality, he anticipates it). He also convinces Jar Jar Binks to propose that the senate grant him emergency powers, allowing him to summon the clone army. With this new power, he begins the Battle of Geonosis and later the Clone Wars. After the said battle, Dooku informs him that the war had begun as planned, and even though they lost, it was merely the first step in a greater game. During the war, he continues to set up several events to his advantage. The war goes on for three years.
Revenge of the Sith
At the peak of the Clone Wars, Palpatine fakes kidnapping in order to test Anakin. Hoping to save who he thought was Chancellor Palpatine, Anakin, and Obi-Wan engage Dooku in combat. Although he knocks out Obi-Wan, Dooku is soon at Anakin's mercy. The Jedi is quick to kill him in cold blood, courtesy of Palpatine's goading.
After some additional tension, Obi-Wan and Anakin bring him home safely. Soon after, he has the Separatists moved to Mustafar through General Grievous. He then attends the opera with his soon to be apprentice Anakin and tells him about Darth Plageuis. He keeps his cover by not telling him that he was the sith apprentice that murdered Lord Plageuis. To which he follows his master plan by learning of Anakin's fear for his wife, and plays on it by lying that the dark side can save her life. From there, he deliberately blows his cover, knowing Anakin will report him. Still devoted to the Jedi, Anakin tells Mace Windu of Palpatine's double identity as Darth Sidious, and Mace leads a strike team of four Jedi Masters to stop him after the destruction of General Grievous. Nevertheless, Palpatine calculates heir arrival and is ready to fight. He cuts down the three Jedi Mace brought along, but had to revert to Force Lightning, as well as Anakin's help, to kill Mace. After the fight, Palpatine prompts Anakin to join him, and Anakin pledges himself to the ways of the Sith and is christened Darth Vader. He then convinces Vader that the Jedi are plotting to take over the Republic, and sends him to eliminate the Jedi in their headquarters, the Jedi Temple. To take care of the others fighting against the Droid Army, Palpatine initiates Order 66 to the clone troopers which was quickly reveled to turn the clones against the Jedi; this ultimately destroys most of the Jedi and the Republic. On Kashyyyk the clones not only turned on the Jedi but also betrayed the Wookies on their home planet which nearly lead to their destruction. With Darth Vader on his way to kill the Separatist leaders, Palpatine officially ushers in and restores the Sith Empire in the transformation of the Republic into the First Galactic Empire, a brutal authoritarian regime, at a special Senate meeting to thunderous applause.
He goes to his private quarters downstairs to check on Vader via hologram, but is then confronted by Yoda, who survived the Jedi purge. As the duel moves to the Senate chamber, Palpatine uses both his lightsaber and Force lightning against Yoda, who is ultimately forced to retreat. He begins a search for Yoda, but turns away when he senses Darth Vader is in severe danger. He flies to Mustafar himself to rescue him, and rebuilds him in a life support suit on Coruscant. To seal his victory over Vader, Palpatine tells him he killed Padme in anger, as she was already dead, which ironically was the truth. Neither knew she gave birth to twins moments before she died. He is last seen overlooking construction of the Death Star.
A New Hope
Since the Galactic Civil War begun, he dissolved the Imperial Senate which the last remnants of the Old Republic has been swept away.
The Empire Strikes Back
Palpatine first appeared as the unnamed Emperor of the Galactic Empire in the 1980 film The Empire Strikes Back and was voiced by Clive Revill. In the film he contacts Darth Vader via holographic communication and tells him of a "great Disturbance in the Force", and warns him that Luke Skywalker ("the offspring of Anakin Skywalker") is becoming a threat and could possibly destroy them. Vader insists he is just a boy and his mentor, Obi-Wan Kenobi, can no longer help him (neither know that Yoda has replaced Obi-Wan as Luke's teacher), but Palpatine insists Luke is still strong with the Force. But Vader convinces the Emperor that Luke would be a perfect asset if he could be turned to the dark side of the Force. Taking an interest in Vader's suggestion, Palpatine asks if Vader thinks he can do it, and Vader replies that Luke would join the dark side or be destroyed.
Return of the Jedi
In Return of the Jedi, Palpatine (now portrayed by Ian McDiarmid) arrives on the second Death Star to oversee the final stages of the war between his Empire and the Rebel Alliance. He is seen again speaking with Darth Vader. Later, when Vader returns, he immediately scolds him to remain in the Executor before his apprentice informs him of Luke's arrival on Endor, a development that genuinely surprised him. When Vader delivers his son to Palpatine, the Emperor - intent on replacing Vader with a younger, more powerful apprentice - tempts the young Jedi to the dark side by appealing to his fear for his friends, having revealed that he was leading the Rebel Alliance into a trap to wipe them out once and for all. This leads to a lightsaber duel in which Luke defeats and nearly kills Vader. Luke ultimately refuses to turn to the dark side, intending to resurrect the Jedi Order that Palpatine destroyed at the end of the Clone Wars, which angers Palpatine, who attacks him with Force Lightning, ignoring the danger as the shield generator protecting the second Death Star has been destroyed by the Rebel strike team, allowing Lando Calrissian, Nien Nunb, and Wedge Antilles to prepare to attack it. Vader, witnessing the suffering of his son, turns on his master, who was really the true traitor and enemy of the Galactic Republic that Mace Windu warned him of back in the Clone Wars, and redeems himself by throwing the evil Emperor into the second Death Star's reactor shaft to his death, fulfilling the Prophecy as the Chosen One, which the Emperor spent a lifetime trying to prevent. With Palpatine's death, as well as that of Darth Vader, the Sith were destroyed, and with the loss of the Emperor and his right-hand, the Empire was finished as well.
The opening crawl reveals that Palpatine has sent a threatening broadcast to the galaxy and promised revenge. At the beginning of the film, Kylo Ren finds Palpatine on Exegol in his badly damaged and broken body, attached to a life support system. Palpatine reveals that while he did indeed die on the second Death Star, he has since come back to life (citing the phrase "the dark side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural" that he used to lure Anakin to the dark side) and has been hiding in the shadows, saying that he always the one behind the First Order. It is revealed that he is the one that has been manipulating Kylo Ren all along by imitating his deceased grandfather Darth Vader, whom Ren had thought to have communicated with back in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Palpatine was also the puppet master behind the late Supreme Leader Snoke's reign until his demise in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. He promises to give Kylo control of his Sith fleet, the largest starfleet in the history of the galaxy, which he has spent the past several years amassing. He is later revealed to be the grandfather of Rey, and wants her to give into the dark side and kill him so they can become one and she can rule the Final Order as Empress Palpatine. When a redeemed Ben Solo stops her from submitting to his wishes, Palpatine uses the power of their Force dyad to revitalize himself and regenerate his damaged body before trying to wipe out the Resistance with his Force lightning. With Ben's help, she manages to defeat Palpatine for good, killing him by redirecting his lightning back at him with Luke and Leia's lightsabers. Completely disintegrated, Palpatine's death finally destroys the Sith forever, and restores true peace to the galaxy.
Palpatine is one of the recurring characters as well as the true hidden main antagonist in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Under his true persona Sidious usually speaks with allies such as Cad Bane and Dooku via hologram and would usually assign them a sinister task.
In the first season, Palpatine makes a brief appearance on the Holonet broadcast in the episode "Empire Day", but makes a vocal appearance in the second season's television movie "The Siege of Lothal", voiced by Sam Witwer, who originally provided both the voices of Emperor Palpatine and Galen Marek/Starkiller (Darth Vader's apprentice) in the 2008 video game Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and its sequel. Palpatine returned in season four, with Ian McDiarmid reprising his role. In "A World Between Worlds", he came to the ceremonial chamber in the tower at the Works in Coruscant that he use the Sith Alchemy to open the portal to the world between worlds where Ezra and Ahsoka are. He use the fire energy power to them. He caught Ezra's leg and pulling him while trying to get through the portal but stopped by Ahsoka cut the fiery lasso. Then tried again but failed to catch Ahsoka and Ezra that they made it through the portal back to their world. He later appeared in the series finale "Family Reunion - and Farewell", where he tried to trick Ezra, but failed.
Emperor Palpatine is a playable character in Star Wars: Force Arena as a Legendary squad leader card.
- Palpatine is often considered as one of the most evil movie villains ever created as he is mostly known for being the most ruthless or sinister in the Star Wars universe.
- Since the initial theatrical run of Return of the Jedi, Palpatine has become a symbol of evil and sinister deception in popular culture. People have compared his corrupt leadership to many dictators throughout history and his appearance to that of Benedict Arnold.
- The film historian Robin Wood has compared Palpatine's appearance to that of the Evil Queen's witch form in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Coincidentally, both of their disfigured appearances had some relation to lightning that they summoned (the Queen added lightning to a potion as part of an ingredient to fashion a disguise for herself and Palpatine's body ended up disfigured as a direct result of Mace Windu redirecting his Force Lightning back at Palpatine when he attempted to blast him with it, although it was heavily implied with the latter, at least in the old Expanded Universe, that the disfigurements were actually his true form being exposed).
- Contrary to popular belief, Palpatine was not referred to by name until The Phantom Menace. His name originated from supplementary materials such as the visual dictionary for the original trilogy, the script, and the novelizations.
- Palpatine's defeat and death at the hands of Vader was referenced in Toy Story 3, where Big Baby picked up Lotso after one abuse too many and threw him in the dumpster. At the time the movie was released, Disney had not acquired the rights to Star Wars yet, though many of the Disney / Pixar films, including all of the Toy Story films, have included references to aspects of the Star Wars franchise.
- Palpatine's voice actor up to Season 3 for Star Wars Rebels, Sam Witwer, had previously voiced him in Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.
- In addition, Ian McDiarmid voiced him for Season 4, marking the first time he's portrayed the character in a Star Wars production since Revenge of the Sith, as well as the first time he's portrayed the character in a non-film appearance. He is also the third Star Wars actor to reprise a role they portrayed in the films in Rebels, after Darth Vader and Lando Calrissian.
- Palpatine's character is considered to be one of the greatest cinematic villains of all time since the films released as well as Ian McDiarmid had received general critical acclaim for his performance and considered to be the most frightening and vile Star Wars character. This is because, unlike the others villains who have some redeeming qualtites, Palpatine has absolutely none of them.
- As such, while not to the extent of Darth Vader, various parodies and homages to Palpatine were utilized in pop culture due to his positive reception, such as various cameos in Family Guy as well as the character Oswell E. Spencer being modeled after Palpatine in mannerisms, vocals, and to a lesser extent physical appearance in Resident Evil 5.
- Palpatine's primary inspiration had been former President of the United States Richard Milhous Nixon.
- The Emperor uses a cane because he pretends to be weak, not because he needs it.
- Palpatine's return in The Rise of Skywalker is marking the official return of Ian McDiarmid to the role after 14 years and 36 years following Revenge of the Sith and Return of the Jedi. Respectively.
- While no explicit explanation is given in The Rise of Skywalker to how he managed to cheat death in Return of the Jedi, he quotes the phrase "the dark side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural" when he appears onscreen for the first time, implying that he used unknown Force powers to ressurrect himself at some point before the events of The Force Awakens.