Alia Atreides in 1984's 'Dune'

The Most Interesting ‘Dune: Part Two’ Character Has Yet To Be Revealed

St. Alia of the Knife

Dune: Part 2 releases in a few months, yet the marketing still hasn’t revealed one of the series’ best characters.

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After watching the masterful Dune movie, released in 2021, I’ve been (not so) patiently awaiting the rest of the story. With the release of character photos and the first full trailer, Dune: Part Two is finally becoming a tangible reality. Many vital characters are joining the cast in the sequel. The amazingly talented Florence Pugh is playing Princess Irulan, and Austin Butler is the villainous Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen.

As much as I loved the first part (Duke Leto Atreides and Duncan Idaho, am I right?), one of my favorite characters doesn’t enter the scene until the second part of the story. For a science-fiction novel written in the 1960s, Dune has a lot of interesting female characters. The whole Bene Gesserit order of women is fascinating (I’m ready to take my Gob Jabbar test), but of all the female characters Frank Herbert wrote, there is none more complex and enthralling than Alia Atreides. Though we didn’t see her in the trailers for Dune: Part Two, she plays a critical role in the story.

Potential spoilers below for Dune: Part Two

Who is Alia Atreides in Dune?

Simply put, Alia Atreides is the younger sister of the Arrakis savior, Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet). But there is nothing simple about Alia. Before the attack orchestrated by the Harkonnens and the fall of the House Atreides, Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson) found out that she was pregnant. After the death of her beloved Duke Leto (Oscar Isaac), Jessica and their son Paul fled to the desert. When the two join with the Fremen, the tribe wants Jessica to utilize her Bene Gesserit training and become their Reverend Mother. Jessica undergoes the spice agony ritual to awaken herself to ancestral memories and become the Reverend Mother of the Fremen.

When Jessica goes through the psychedelic journey, so does her unborn baby. As Jessica becomes connected to the line of memories that came before her, Alia does too. Alia becomes conscious of the world while still in the womb and is born with the knowledge of her ancestors. It is pretty intense. As a toddler, she can speak and reason just like an adult. Many of the Fremen find her unnerving and strange. Even worse, the Bene Gesserit considers her an abomination that should be terminated.

Even though she is young, Alia is a major part of Paul’s plan to exact revenge on House Harkonnen. At the ripe old age of four, she is ready to throw down for her brother. Some might find Alia a little creepy, but I adore her. A little girl who can outsmart people 10 times her age and wield a crysknife with deadly force is amazing. Her skill with the crysknife earns her the epic title of “St. Alia of the Knife.” In a surprising moment, Alia kills a major character that many have sought to kill. Alia goes on to play a major part in the Atreides family story for the rest of the book series.

As of this writing, there is no official word on who plays Alia in Dune: Part Two. It is a tough part to fill because she is so young and so intense. Even though there are several trailers out for the upcoming movie, there has been no sighting or mention of Alia. What do they not want us to know about her? Is Alia going to be a huge reveal in the movie? It might be something huge they are going to do for going to such lengths to hide her. I think she’s too important and too interesting of a character for them to cut from the story. The first part of this new take on Dune was so well done, though, that I am more excited than nervous to see how her character plays out.

(featured image: Universal Pictures)


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Author
D.R. Medlen
D.R. Medlen (she/her) is a pop culture staff writer at The Mary Sue. After finishing her BA in History, she finally pursued her lifelong dream of being a full-time writer in 2019. She expertly fangirls over Marvel, Star Wars, and historical fantasy novels (the spicier the better). When she's not writing or reading, she lives that hobbit-core life in California with her spouse, offspring, and animal familiars.