The Jedi with their sabers all in a line

Did You Catch All of These ‘Star Wars’ Easter Eggs in ‘The Acolyte’?

Leslye Headland’s The Acolyte is the latest addition to the galaxy far, far away, and although it takes place 100 years prior to the Skywalker Saga, there are plenty of Easter eggs connecting it to the broader Star Wars universe. Here’s a full breakdown of everything we’ve caught (so far).

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The Acolyte has officially made its Disney+ debut, taking Star Wars fans back in time to the High Republic era for the first time in live action. The show stars Amandla Stenberg as Force-sensitive twins Mae and Osha, though it’s safe to say that there’s not a lot of sisterly love going on here. After their home is destroyed in a fire, the twins take diverging paths, with Osha going on to become a Jedi under the assumption that her sister is dead. However, there’s a bigger mystery going on behind the scenes—one that involves the Jedi Masters who were present on that fateful night Brendok burned.

Something smells Sithy, to say the least. Even so, the Jedi are hardly depicted as the good guys here, and a mysterious “Master” is helping Mae to avenge her fallen coven from the shadows, meaning trouble lies ahead for our protagonists. We’ll just have to wait and see if Mae’s little murder spree is, perhaps, justifiable, or if the Dark Side has fully consumed what little remains of her light. Dafne Keen, Lee Jung-jae, Carrie-Anne Moss, Manny Jacinto, and Jodie Turner-Smith also star, among others.

And yeah, even though The Acolyte picks up nearly a century before the events of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, there are dozens of callbacks to the George Lucas-helmed original and prequel trilogies, so keep your eyes peeled while watching.

Zabraks, Wookiees, and other familiar Star Wars species

Episode 3 of The Acolyte, “Destiny,” acts as an origin story for Osha and Mae. Beyond that, it also gives us the first good look at Jedi Master Kelnacca, played by longtime Chewbacca actor Joonas Suotamo. Wookiees are a staple of Star Wars lore, though this marks the first time we’ve seen one of the shaggy-haired giants donning Jedi robes—well, in live action, at least. (Gungi stans, rise!)

The witch who carried Mae and Osha, Mother Koril (Margarita Levieva), also happens to be a Zabrak, a.k.a. the same horned species as Darth Maul. While Koril appears to hail from Iridonia, Dathomirian Zabraks (also known as Nightsisters) are a a notable sub-species with a knack for Magick—think Asajj Ventress. We’ve also seen what looks to be a Kel Dor in trailers for The Acolyte, as well as some Neimoidians in episode 1, “Lost/Found”—a nod to the Trade Federation. Additionally, Jedi Master Vernestra Rwoh (Rebecca Henderson) is a Mirialan like Master Luminara Unduli, and a Twi’lek woman makes a cameo in episode 3. Suffice it to say, The Acolyte has brought many alien species to the mix.

The best planet in Star Wars lore

It’s Coruscant, obviously. I could seriously watch an entire Disney+ series about Coruscant’s criminal underbelly, a concept that, at one point, was supposedly part of George Lucas’ master plan for the sequels. Sigh. Missed opportunity. Personal gripes aside, we get to revisit the “Jewel of the Core Worlds” in episode 1 of The Acolyte, which takes us back to the oh-so-familiar Jedi Temple that served as the primary backdrop of the prequel trilogy and Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Despite The Acolyte taking place during the High Republic era, Coruscant still has many of its distinguishing characteristics in the show, including dozens of skyscrapers, speeder lanes, and of course, the Jedi Temple, which looks nearly identical to how it did during The Phantom Menace. Ultimately, this posh capitol would go on to become HQ of the Galactic Empire following Order 66, before acting as the home of the New Republic, but until then, it’s fun to see Coruscant during this time of peace and prosperity.

Absent fathers—no, literally

Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen/Jake Lloyd) was famously conceived without a father in some type Force BS, but he’s not the only “Chosen One” out there who didn’t need a daddy. In episode 3 of The Acolyte, it’s revealed that Mother Aniseya (Turner-Smith) somehow manipulated the “thread” (a.k.a. the Force) to create Mae and Osha, with Mother Koril having carried and birthed them. Space IVF wasn’t exactly on my 2024 bingo card, but it’s an interesting concept with parallels to The Phantom Menace, in which Anakin’s mother, Shmi (Pernilla August), tells Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson) that the boy didn’t have a father.

Look, it’s important to note that The Acolyte isn’t trying to copy Anakin Skywalker’s arc, even if there are some definite similarities. In my eyes, at least, Anakin is the prophesied child of the Force itself (or an indirect creation of Darth Plagueis, though that remains just a theory), while Mae and Osha were created with the Force—perhaps even the Dark Side. We get a tease of this in The Acolyte’s third episode, when Koril warns Mother Aniseya, “And what happens if the Jedi discover how you created them?” So even if Anakin and the twins were conceived without fathers, it seems like The Acolyte is taking a different route here—no need to get all riled up about Disney “ruining” the prequels or changing the canon, sheesh!

Force aptitude testing and other Jedi shenanigans

As previously mentioned, “Destiny” channels some major Phantom Menace vibes, particularly when it comes to the Jedi on Brendok. Towards the end of the episode, Mother Aniseya begrudgingly allows Master Sol to test both of the twins for Force abilities, as Osha wants to leave the coven to become a Jedi—much to the chagrin of Mae. The sisters are told to lie during the test if they want to remain witches (well, only Mae properly “ascended,” but still), though when the time comes, Osha ends up spilling the truth and passes the test with flying colors.

We saw the Jedi Council testing Anakin for Force sensitivity in a very similar way during The Phantom Menace. As it goes, the administrator flashes images—visible only to themselves—on a portable viewscreen and asks the child being tested to share what they see. If they truly are touched by the Force, the recruit will be able to see the images in their mind. To ensure this, Jedi will also take blood samples from these children to evaluate their midi-chlorian count, as we saw Sol do to Mae in The Acolyte and Qui-Gon to do Anakin in the prequels.

These callbacks to Episode I go to show that the Jedi really are terribly stuck in their ways—making their eventual downfall all the more understandable. Still, this seems a foolproof way to test kids for Force sensitivity, even if Osha and Anakin were older than most prospective Jedi.

Some Alien-like torture methods

It seems like even Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is getting a little love from The Acolyte. The Dybbuk, a parasitic species eerily reminiscent of the Alien franchise’s Facehuggers, is introduced in the first episode of The Acolyte, where a dangerous criminal aboard Osha’s prisoner transport is seen with one covering his eyes, nose, and mouth. Having what is, essentially, a slimy squid-like creature on your face doesn’t sound, like, super fun or comfy, making them an excellent torture device. In Rogue One, Bor Gullet, a creature with the ability to read thoughts, used his slimy, telepathic tentacles to taunt Riz Ahmed’s Imperial defector pilot, Bodhi Rook, into spilling his knowledge of Galen Erso. Dybbuks use a very similar method of extracting information, and…yeah, it’s seriously disturbing. New fear unlocked.

“I have a bad feeling about this.”

Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan Kenobi is responsible for some of Star Wars’ most iconic lines, which, for one of the Jedi’s most stoic, disciplined members, are said with some serious ‘tude. In fact, Obi-Wan’s sassy first line in The Phantom Menace (first spoken by Luke Skywalker in A New Hope) is one that goes on to pop up dozens of times throughout the Star Wars franchise: “I have a bad feeling about this.” Anakin, Padmé, Commander Cody, C-3PO, Rex, Mace Windu, and even a B1-series battle droid say it in the prequels and The Clone Wars animated series. Luke, Han, and Leia also repeat it plenty of times in the original trilogy. It’s a classic, okay?!

The Acolyte continues this tradition, with Yord (Charlie Barnett) saying the iconic quote as he prepares to confront Mae on Olega in episode 2, “Revenge/Justice.” While it’s a quick throwaway gag, it is heartwarming to see that “I have a bad feeling about this” has made it all the way from Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope to this new wave of Disney+ shows.


A rare metal from Star Wars Legends made its live-action debut in The Acolyte‘s fifth episode, titled “Night.” After the true identity of Mae’s shadowy Sith Master comes to light (it’s Qimir, BTW), he proceeds to wipe out nearly an entire Jedi enclave thanks to his Cortosis armor, which is capable of short-circuiting lightsabers. Obviously, this gives “The Stranger” a huge advantage in combat. Interestingly enough, the Separatists actually attempted to construct an army of battle droids during the Clone Wars, but Anakin and Thrawn join forces to stop it. Pretty cool, right?

“They’ve turned you against me.”

Again, as a prequels girlie, I caught this one right away. In The Acolyte episode 5, Mae utters the same words to Osha, having abandoned her place by Qimir’s. Now, she just wants to reunite with her twin sis. However, Osha doesn’t exactly feel forgiving, considering that Mae slaughtered quite a few Jedi Masters during her murderous rampage. Of course, this iconic line can be traced back to Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, when Anakin accuses Padmé of betraying him for the Jedi upon her and Obi-Wan’s arrival on Mustafar. This show just loves to pay homage to the prequel trilogy!

We’ll continue updating this list as The Acolyte nears the end of its run on Disney+, but until then, did we miss any Easter eggs? Let us know in the comments!

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Amanda Landwehr
Amanda is a Los Angeles-based entertainment writer who lives and breathes Star Wars, Marvel, and all things pop culture. She has worked in digital media since 2021, covering the latest movie/TV releases, casting updates, fan theories, and so, so much more. When she's not rotting away behind her laptop screen, you can typically catch Amanda maxing out her AMC Stubs membership.