Darth Vader Proves Sidious Was the Most Powerful Sith


  • Darth Vader’s constant desire for power and refusal to play second fiddle has always hindered his true potential as the Chosen One.
  • Emperor Palpatine’s manipulative plans and incredible power demonstrate why he is one of the most powerful Sith Lords in Star Wars.
  • Palpatine’s masterful manipulation of the Sith Rule of Two ensured that he remained in control and always had a loyal apprentice, until one hero defied his wishes and chose the light.

Throughout his arc in Star Wars, from Jedi Padawan to Sith Lord, Darth Vader always chafed at the bonds of authority. Whether it was with the Jedi High Council or Darth Sidious himself, Anakin Skywalker never made peace with playing second fiddle. However, despite his enormous Force potential, and his status as the Chosen One, that is what Anakin has always been: second best.

Following Luke’s escape on Bespin, and contrary to his master’s summons, Darth Vader embarked \on a mission to track down and punish those who covered up the boy’s existence, to the displeasure of the true Dark Lord of the Sith. Seeking to teach his apprentice the truth of power, Sidious tasks Vader with returning from the brink of death. Again, on the shores of Mustafar. Only now, instead of seeking his master’s approval, Vader seeks his death. But, after a run-in with Ochi of Bestoon and the Eye of Webbish Bogg, Vader obtains a Sith wayfinder, and a chance to learn a new truth that will upend his understanding of the Empire, and, more importantly, his place in it.

Updated on October 20, 2023, by Jordan Iacobucci: Emperor Palpatine remains one of the most iconic characters in the entire Star Wars franchise. After positioning himself as the true antagonist of all three trilogies in the Skywalker Saga, Palpatine’s devious plans deserve some level of begrudging respect from audiences. As a schemer and a Sith Lord, there are very few characters in the history of Star Wars more powerful–or dangerous–than Darth Sidious.

Sidious Shows Why He Is the Most Powerful Sith

Star Wars: Darth Vader #1

Star Wars: Darth Vader is an ongoing Star Wars comic book series written by Greg Pak. The Marvel Comics series takes place between Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi and follows Vader on a rage-fueled journey after Luke refuses to join him

Greg Pak

Raffaele Ienco

VC’s Joe Caramagna

Cover Artist
Inhyuk Lee

Marvel Comics


Release Date
February 5, 2020

Neeraj Menon

One Star Wars Jedi Has Been Killed Four Separate Times

Confounding the Emperor’s attempts to stop him, Darth Vader soon makes his way to the secret base on Exegol. In Star Wars: Darth Vader (2020) #11, by Greg Pak, Raffaele Ienco, Neeraj Menon, Joe Caramagna, Aaron Kuder and Richard Isanove, the Sith Lord uses the Force to dominate the mind of a Summa-Verminoth, the galaxy’s greatest predator. Vader then turns his attention to the Emperor himself. Seeking to teach his hated master a lesson of his own, Vader goes in for the kill. However, far from venting his anger and supplanting Sidious, the apprentice finds himself the recipient of yet another lesson. But this time, the Sith Master doesn’t simply reiterate his dominance of the Force. No, this time, he goes a step further.

Darth Sidious is the schemer supreme, with plans upon plans that, even without his mastery of the Dark Side, put him far beyond his apprentice. Having, time and again, dominated Vader’s mind, body, and soul, Darth Sidious revels in his victories before revealing to his apprentice that even Vader’s wildest imaginings cannot comprehend the scope of his power. After once again breaking Vader down, Sidious demonstrates another level of his power.

Darth Vader Will Never be as Powerful as Palpatine

Star Wars: Yoda Gave Up After His Fight With Palpatine, Here’s Why

Taking Vader deep into his sanctum, and assailing him with the traditional tribulations of the Sith, he resolves to him the beginnings of his fleet of planet-destroying ships, which would eventually return to vex the galaxy in the years to come. Through this obscene military power, Sidious elucidates the truth of their relationship: It is only through the prism of Sidious’ strength that Darth Vader can truly be powerful. Darth Vader, the raw tempest of wild power that he is, will always be in the Emperor’s shadow. This is a fundamental weakness that will always hold Vader back, forcing him to remain the same frightened little boy he had been ever since leaving Tatooine.

Once the lesson of dominance is complete, Sidious is once again confirmed to be the master. Darth Vader accepts his place as the student, at least for now, understanding that Sidious can outthink him, surpass his command of the Dark Side, and bend the galaxy to his will. Of course, this only serves to solidify Vader’s defiance. But as Star Wars fans know, even his final act, his very redemption, only plays further into the Emperor’s plans, leading to his resurrection in The Rise of Skywalker.

Sidious Perfectly Manipulated The Sith Rule Of Two

Sidious tempts Luke to the Dark Side in a vision.

How a Simple Typo Created One of Star Wars’ Iconic Jedi Masters

Emperor Palpatine’s nefarious plot to rule over the galaxy involved a perfect manipulation of the Sith “Rule of Two.” This law, established by Darth Bane centuries before the events of The Phantom Menace, maintained that only two Sith should ever exist at one time: a master and an apprentice. Through his dealings with characters like Darth Vader, Count Dooku, and Darth Maul, Palpatine managed to abide by the Sith “Rule of Two” while still serving his own purposes. The Sith’s premiere rule typically resulted in the apprentice growing powerful enough to overthrow the master and take on an apprentice of their own. However, Palpatine manipulated this rule so that his apprentices fell while he grew in power.

Even while Darth Maul was still his apprentice, Darth Sidious was already working to corrupt Count Dooku into becoming his next pupil. When Maul fell, Dooku was already around to serve Palpatine’s next purpose in starting a galactic war. Dooku, as audiences remember, was also a pawn in Palpatine’s plan, who was eventually executed at his own master’s order when Anakin Skywalker had finally grown powerful enough to replace him. Upon becoming Darth Vader, Anakin served as Palpatine’s apprentice for many years, but recent comics reveal that he never had a positive relationship with his master. Palpatine even planned to replace Vader, eventually trying to tempt Luke Skywalker to kill his father and become the next Sith apprentice. By keeping new apprentices at each other’s throats, Palpatine ensured that he would always remain the one in control–until one hero defied his wishes and chose the light.

Emperor Palpatine’s masterful manipulations prove why he is one of the best villains in the Star Wars franchise–and one of the most powerful Sith Lords to ever live. Through his work with Darth Vader, Palpatine proves his incredible power–and his great ability to keep that power at any cost.


Star Wars

Created by George Lucas, Star Wars began in 1977 with the then-eponymous film that would later be retitled Episode IV: A New Hope. The original Star Wars trilogy centered on Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa, who helped lead the Rebel Alliance to victory over the tyrannous Galactic Empire. This Empire was overseen by Darth Sidious/Emperor Palpatine, who was aided by the cybernetic menace known as Darth Vader.In 1999, Lucas returned to Star Wars with a prequel trilogy that explored how Luke’s father Anakin Skywalker became a Jedi and eventually succumbed to the dark side of the Force. 

Created by
George Lucas

First Film
Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

Latest Film
Star Wars: Episode XI – The Rise of Skywalker

First TV Show
Star Wars: The Mandalorian

Latest TV Show

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