Rebecca Henderson as Vernestra Rwoh in The Acolyte

On ‘The Acolyte,’ Is Vernestra Rwoh Really a Good Guy or No?

Deception, lies, and betrayal are at the heart of the latest Star Wars show to hit Disney+, The Acolyte. Now that we know that even the Jedi can’t be trusted, fans are starting to wonder, is Master Vernestra Rwoh hiding something?

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It’s hard to believe that we’re already approaching the end of Leslye Headland’s High Republic show, The Acolyte. With just one episode left to go until the finale, the series has some burning questions to address, namely, about dark sider Qimir (Manny Jacinto) and what exactly happened on Brendok 16 years ago. We know that the Jedi were, to an extent, involved in the destruction of the witch coven Mae and Osha (Amandla Stenberg) once belonged to, but their role in the whole fiasco remains cloudy—and that’s saying the least.

Now, the latest episode of The Acolyte, titled “Teach/Corrupt,” is making things even more complicated by introducing a subplot that could change how audiences view Master Vernestra and her so-called “loyalty” to the Jedi Order—forever.

Warning! Spoilers ahead for all episodes of The Acolyte.

Vernestra Rwoh is a powerful—and deceptively old—Jedi

To fully understand Vernestra’s role in The Acolyte, we have to look to the High Republic novels and comics. Vernestra, a green-hued Mirialan, made her debut in The High Republic Adventures Annual 2021, but it wasn’t until Star Wars The High Republic #5 that her character was really fleshed-out. Since then, Vernestra has featured prominently in Charles Soule’ canon novel The High Republic: Light of the Jedi, as well as The High Republic: A Test of Courage, among others.

There’s a lot of lore here, but all you need to know is that Vernestra Rwoh is the “it girl” of the High Republic era, having achieved Jedi Knighthood at the tender age of just 15. Razor-sharp with both her mind and her unique purple lightwhip, Vernestra is described in the High Republic books as being something of a teenage prodigy, which often led to more problems than anything. And yeah, given that she was born around 248 BBY (if the Test of Courage timeline is anything to go by), this would make her well over 100 years old by the time The Acolyte rolls around—Vernestra has lived a lot of lives.

High Republic fans finally get to see their favorite gal in full, live-action glory thanks to The Acolyte, where she’s played by showrunner Leslye Headland’s wife, Rebecca Henderson. The Disney+ show paints a more complicated picture of Vernestra, as the stoic Jedi Master seems to struggle between her oath to the Order and her personal feelings, wanting justice for Master Indara (Carrie-Anne Moss) at any cost. It’s not exactly a Jedi-like feeling, and raises the question of whether or not Vernestra has the right intentions by going after Sol’s (Lee Jung-jae) ship after sending them on what was, essentially, a death mission to Khofar…all without the High Council’s permission, it seems.

Episode 6 of The Acolyte also adds a whole new layer to the mystery of Vernestra by introducing audiences to Padawan learner Mog (Harry Trevaldwyn). After receiving Sol’s distress signal, he assembles a search party to Khofar to retrieve the slain Jedi. Upon discovering the corpses, Mog has quite the damning accusation: Sol was the one who murdered all of the Jedi. We, the viewer, know this isn’t true, and Vernestra adamantly denies this. Howeverm Mog seems to know a little more than he’s letting on, perhaps, about Sol’s shady past. We also get to see Vernestra’s lightwhip in action when she cuts down a umbramoth in the jungle, begging the question…are those scars on Qimir’s (ahem, well-toned) back somehow related? If so, was Vernestra once his Master? And what would’ve brought them to such a violent confrontation?

Obviously, there’s a lot of loose plot threads for The Acolyte to tie up before its finale. But regardless of whether or not Disney will move forward with a second season, seeing Vernestra Rwoh in live action has been a treat for us High Republic girlies already.

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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.