Mother Koril Might Be Alive After Surprising Twist in Episode 7

Mother Koril Might Be Alive After Surprising Twist in Episode 7

After spending two rock-solid episodes setting up its central mystery, The Acolyte switched gears in Episode 3 to dive into Osha and Mae’s backstory — and also add even more mystery because Leslye Headland is weaving one hell of a tale here.

Before we begin, I’m very interested to see the reactions to this week’s episode because I was completely caught off guard by the overwhelmingly positive reception that The Acolyte premiere received. Not only did the show do gangbuster numbers for Disney+, but people that I wouldn’t exactly call Star Wars fans surprisingly loved it. I’m hoping that carries through after watching “Destiny,” which delivered a morally complex look at who’s allowed to wield the Force, and why does it always end in making child soldiers?

This time around, Amandla Stenberg gets a break while Osha and Mae are played by actual twins, Lauren and Leah Brady, respectively. We meet the sisters during their early years on Brendok, and right out of the gate, we see an innate ability to use the Force. We’re also tipped off that something isn’t quite right with Mae as she uses her power to aggressively restrain a space butterfly until Osha begs her to stop. However, that brief glimpse is quickly overwhelmed by an extremely loving bond and repeated examples of how these two are just kids. Osha restrained a butterfly, too, albeit briefly, so this will not be an episode where things are cut and dry. Once again, The Acolyte is bucking the rote Saturday morning serial trappings of the franchise and going for a more complex tale à la Andor.

But, Mike, didn’t you specifically say, “Don’t expect an auteur vision on par with Andor” just last week? Look, I say a lot of things. What are you, the cops? But, seriously, this show is pulling off a delightful mish-mash of pulpy Star Wars fun and rich storytelling, the latter of which gets way too easily jettisoned. Granted, The Mandalorian proved you can live off vibes for a spell, but eventually, you’ll fart out a terrible season that runs your merchandising golden goose into the ground so hard that Disney puts the adorable little guy on ice. Sure, they say he’s getting a movie, but I’ll believe that sh*t when I see it.

Anyway, the two sisters are reprimanded by Mother Koril (Margarita Levieva) for leaving their fortress and venturing off into the woods. That lecture is for good reason, as we see a young Jedi Sol (Lee Jung-jae) lurking behind a tree and clearly trying to stay out of sight. His presence adds a sense of foreboding because, up until now, the official story of what happened on Brendok already has some holes in it. Namely, Mae still being alive.

With the girls back inside the fortress, we learn that Mother Koril isn’t just an honorific title. She’s Osha and Mae’s actual mother, which will become another mystery added to the mix. Mother Aniseya (Jodie Turner-Smith) is the children’s other mom because not only does The Acolyte have yucky girls in it, but they’re not married to boys! Ewwww. If you start to see the already frothing white-hot hate for this show get cranked up to 11 amongst the neckbeard herds, now you know why.

Much-needed representation aside, Aniseya oversees a coven of witches and there are some interesting things happening for lore junkies. For starters, Koril is a Zabrak, the same species as Darth Maul. Second, this coven has been exiled for an unexplained reason, which raises the question of who exiled them? Given there’s a Zabrak amongst them, the Nightsisters are a solid guess. But if you’re already lost, don’t sweat the nerd stuff. All of that is immaterial to what the coven is teaching, and there are some huge red flags here.

As Aniseya instructs Osha and Mae on the philosophical nature of the Force, she warns them about those who think it’s something to be wielded, and then she does exactly that. Aniseya’s next move is a combat demonstration of how the “Power of Two” using the Force together is stronger than the power of one before warning her children that their enemies will not give them a warning. Despite her seemingly peaceful talk about the Force connecting living beings, Aniseya and the coven is just as ready and skilled at using it as a weapon. It’s an interesting contradiction, and it won’t be the episode’s last. But I’m getting ahead of myself. The Power of Two business: Massive red flag that we’re dealing with some sort of Sith connection here. Mysteries on top of mysteries, I freaking love it.

The backdrop to all of this is that Osha and Mae are set to take part in a ceremony that will cement them in the coven. Mae is freaking gung ho about it and can’t think of anything better than the two of them being with their moms and coven forever. Osha, on the other hand, yearns to see the galaxy in a wildly on the nose Star Wars theme. It’s a miracle they didn’t have her staring off into the distance while two double suns blaze overhead. Their induction into the coven is even more important because they’re the only children around, and their presence is referred to as a miracle by Aniseya. Are we looking at a double Anakin Skywalker situation here? Because it kind of looks that way.

As the ceremony gets underway, we’re greeted to some more “Power of Two” business before Mae willingly accepts her place in the coven as Aniseya uses the Force to make a mark appear on the child’s forehead. When it’s Osha’s turn, she’s not even masking her reluctance and hesitates long enough for her induction to be cut short. The Jedi have entered the fortress, and it’s the four being hunted by Mae in the present: Sol, Indara (Carrie Anne-Moss), Torbin (Dean Charles-Chapman), and Kelnacca (Joonas Suotamo.) To be clear, they don’t come in lightsabers swinging. They waltz in politely before Indara and Aniseya engage in a brief verbal battle.

Indara says they did not know the planet was inhabited before Aniseya scoffs at the thought of the Jedi not being aware of anything. She doesn’t buy their cover story, and she shouldn’t as Indara makes it clear that they’re here because the coven is inducting children in violation of Republic law. Koril lies and says there are no children present, but that falls apart as Kelnacca can literally see Osha and Mae hiding amongst the coven. Now, if you know anything about the Jedi or watched the first episode of this show, you know they’re all about training kids, so their hypocrisy is on full display here. That said, I cannot stress this enough: Both sides are hell-bent on injecting the girls full of their respective dogmas and using them as powerful weapons. Like real life, it’s complicated. (Case in point: Aniseya didn’t even hesitate to threaten Torbin with some dark side mind control, and later, we’ll see Koril accuse the Jedi of using mind tricks. Whole lot of projection from everybody here.)

As soon as Osha and Mae reveal themselves, Indara says it’s law that they be tested as potential Jedi — if Aniseya approves, of course. Surprisingly, she consents to the test, and we discover why as she meets with her advisors. Resisting the Jedi will bring the full weight of the Republic down upon them. They didn’t have to come in and ask with sabers drawn because their power is that unspoken threat. Leslye Headland has said that The Acolyte will lay the groundwork for how the Jedi fell from the top of their power to having Darth Sidious operate right under their noses and easily use them as pawns in the Prequel Trilogy. Hubris will clearly play a role in that.

Complicating matters even further is the fact that Osha wants to be a Jedi, and Aniseya is not blind to her daughter’s yearning to leave the coven. However, Aniseya agrees to a plot that involves the girls purposefully failing their tests, which should send the Jedi on their way. Mae readily goes along with the plan, but Osha struggles to maintain the facade when it’s her turn. She’s captivated by Sol and his tales of meeting more children, which is music to Osha’s ears after only being around her sister her whole life.

Angered by Osha’s betrayal, Mae informs Aniseya, who does not scold Osha. Instead, she encourages her daughter to follow her destiny and pursue a life with the Jedi. This decision does not sit well with Koril and particularly Mae, who freaking loses it. Heading into the episode, there was a sense of foreboding from the Jedi’s presence and a chance that maybe Mae didn’t burn down their home. Nope, she did it! Fully consumed by her anger from the thought of losing her sister — see what’s happening here — Mae locks Osha in her room and lights the place on fire. (Did anyone else think the doorway was cleverly shaped like Vader’s helmet or is senility finally kicking in? Be honest.)

Being the mechanical whiz that she is, Osha manages to escape, only to discover that the entire temple is crashing down thanks to the fire hitting the main reactor thingy. In another surprising reveal that the official story is true, Sol really does try to save Osha and Mae. He rushes into the fire in frantic pursuit of the children and, as we already know, only makes it out with Osha after Mae seemingly falls to her death. As the Jedi and his future padawan make their way out, Osha sees the bodies of the coven, including Aniseya. Because Star Wars “rhymes,” the vibes are very Luke seeing the charred remains of Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru in A New Hope.

Osha’s now locked into becoming a Jedi — albeit one who will wash out — and Mae is locked into becoming a knife-wielding badass trained by a master whose identity we still don’t know yet. Fade to black.

Mike Drops:
— I guess we’ll hit the biggest question right out of the gate: Did Mae’s fire really kill the whole coven? I don’t know! There seems to be a lot of purposeful ambiguity here. We only see her set the fire in Osha’s room, but maybe it did drop down and set off the whole reactor, causing an explosion. That said, why was Sol the only one out of the four Jedi to rush back to the temple? Were they really going to sit on their hands and let women and children die? That would track with how this show is going and with the Jedi in the prequels who were all like, “Free slaves? Pfft.” There’s also the chance that Sol was already there for other reasons.
— Is Koril now a suspect to be Mae’s master? Sure.
— “Mike, why did this episode hit so hard even though there wasn’t a single space fight, lightsaber battle, or even pew-pew-pew?” It’s the moral complexity, Kyle! When you get right down to it: Both the coven and the Jedi are secretive religious cults who are convinced of their moral superiority and need a steady flow of new recruits. That said, neither side is necessarily evil or necessarily virtuous. They both do some shady sh*t, and it makes for good drama because portraying the Jedi as the default righteous good guys is boring as hell.
— What’s up with Mae and Osha’s parentage? I also don’t know, and I love it! The episode throws an interesting curveball late in the game by noting that Koril is the one who carried the girls, but Aniseya somehow created them in a way that will concern the Jedi and possibly may have been the reason for the coven’s exile. I don’t think we’re looking at an exact immaculate conception like Anakin that already has angry nerds sobbing into their Funko Pops. Which brings me to…
— Is the Force female now? I’m so sorry for any of you were blissfully unaware of what I’m about to tell you. In fact, it’s not too late to bail out now. Save yourselves! In a nutshell, there were some leaks and/or advanced episodes screening that provided fodder for rage-bait junkies to proclaim that The Acolyte was going to retcon the Force by making it female. This was, of course, total horsesh*t. All we saw in this episode was a concept that has existed in Star Wars lore for decades: A fringe group using the Force, but calling it something else. In this case, The Thread. That’s it. The Force has not changed one single bit. It’s still an ambiguous, gender-neutral construct that can be wielded by anyone with sensitivity to it. What has changed in The Acolyte, or more accurately, been interrogated, is the paradigm of who’s allowed to use the Force in the Star Wars galaxy and who isn’t? But again, this is not a new concept to the franchise, and any sad dorks pissing their pants over more “wokeness” hiding under their bed can get f*cked.
Oh, right, that’s the problem: They can’t.

Source: source names

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top