The Acolyte: What is this mysterious unknown island in "Teach/Corrupt?"

A student of the Force seeks out a Master on a remote island…
The Stranger (Manny Jacinto) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, season one, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.
The Stranger (Manny Jacinto) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, season one, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved. /

With two episodes of The Acolyte remaining, Episode 6, “Teach/Corrupt,” slows the pace with some much-needed character exploration. A significant portion of it takes place between Osha and The Stranger, AKA Qimir, on a mysterious rock-shore island. With Mae stuck on a ship with Sol, Bazil, and Pip, and Vernestra Rwoh leading an investigation into the events on Khofar with Jedi companion Mog, the chess pieces are moving into place for the penultimate and finale episodes. 

With many parallels to The Last Jedi, this episode may cause fans to think of the island planet of Ahch-To, yet there are certain clues that it could be another island from Star Wars Legends lore altogether.

Osha wakes up with her whole world turned upside down, having been brought into a cave (#QimirQave?) by Qimir and nursed back to health from her confrontation with Mae. The dwelling is well-stocked, including ample drinking water, and there is some food cooking as well. Osha grabs some of her twin sister Mae’s clothing and daggers before venturing outside to explore her surroundings. The island is very reminiscent of Ahch-To, where Luke Skywalker exiled himself in The Last Jedi, save for a fairly telling visual cue in the form of little Skura creatures (anteater-puffin types instead of the iconic Porgs), suggesting it is a different location.

While Sol is testing the waters with a Mae masquerading as Osha on his ship and Vernestra leading an expedition on Khofar to catch herself up with everything that’s been going on, Qimir is taking Osha on a journey of self-discovery in highlighting different aspects of the Force that are not part of the teachings of the Jedi. They may not be on Ahch-To per se, but Qimir living remotely on the secluded island and schooling his prospective pupil in ways of the Force. It is very reminiscent of Luke training Rey at the site of the first Jedi temple. When Qimir tempts Osha with his red lightsaber while bathing in a nearby pool, it is clear that he has very prominent wavy scars on his back, suggesting a very tortured past (a commonality with Osha, who lost her family at a young age).

Osha warns that Sol’s “strength in the Force is very powerful” and that he will be able to find them. However, Qimir points out that Osha has that strength and that it’s time somebody taught her that.  Recall that Luke on Ahch-To teaches Rey, “Every word of what you just said was wrong,” regarding her limited understanding of the Force.  In Qimir’s cave, Osha says her connection with the Force will fade over time if she neglects her Jedi training. Yet, Qimir claims there are other ways of tapping into the Force via powerful emotions such as fear, anger, and even desire. Osha claims it’s the path to the dark side, which Qimir claims is "semantics." He tells her her emotions led the Jedi to throw her away.

Sol lures Mae in by lamenting the fact that he was unable to detect Qimir’s true intentions on Olega. Mae responds with the idea that you can lose focus when you emotionally want something so badly while also offering the opinion that Osha had to give up a lot of herself to become a Jedi. On Khofar, Vernestra unleashes her spectacular purple lightwhip to dispatch an umbramoth.

Could she be so invested in this case because she was Qimir’s Master who was responsible for giving him those scars? Qimir told Osha he lost everything too and was also thrown away (though it is unconfirmed if he was referring to his Jedi Master or a Sith Master). This strikes a similarity to Luke’s fleeting failure in The Last Jedi of igniting his green lightsaber towards Ben Solo out of fear for what he would become.

If the scenes on Ahch-To were about Rey training to become a Jedi with Master Luke Skywalker, then the sequences in this episode mirror that by showing Osha getting seduced to the dark side by Qimir with the interest of ‘the Power of Two’ and training her to become an Acolyte of the Sith. So perhaps this island with parallels to Ahch-To is actually an important location that is significant to the Sith rather than the Jedi. The Legends novel Darth Plagueis, written by James Luceno, introduces the ‘rocky tropical islands’ of Bal’demnic. It is an ocean planet in the Outer Rim that is host to a rich supply of cortosis ore and the very location where Darth Plague defeated his master, Darth Tenebrous.

In Qimir’s quest for an acolyte, he tempts Osha with his cortosis helmet (which sits near a vein of cortosis ore within his cave). The Stranger claims that the helmet can block out everything else and leaves only you and the Force… and “what you take with you.” This is a clear-cut comparison to Master Yoda on Dagobah in The Empire Strikes Back, warning young Luke Skywalker that he will only encounter what he takes into the dark side cave. Qimir’s seduction and temptation efforts appear to have paid off as the episode closes with a shot of Osha trying on Qimir’s helmet while breathing heavily in the style of Darth Vader.

While it may not be Ahch-To, the parallels to The Last Jedi feel very intentional. After all, there are two powerful Force-users drawn to opposing sides of Light and Dark. Even that side quest with Bazil trying to sniff out the imposter felt like a trivial failure and purposeful misdirect, such as the Canto Bight sequence, given that Sol had already figured Mae out and intends to enlist her help in stopping the Master and saving Osha. 

Could Vernestra be on the verge of joining the fight with her lightwhip in the interest of addressing past trauma with a former student in Qimir? Will the mystery island where Osha gets seduced to the Dark Side be revealed to be Bal’demnic of Legends with heavy ties to the Sith lineage?

Stay tuned to to find out.

dark. Next. Is Vernestra the former Jedi master of Qimir?. Is Vernestra the former Jedi master of Qimir?