The Acolyte: How the High Republic's Jedi Order differs from the prequels

The Acolyte's Jedi will have several notable differences from the prequel-era Jedi.
Jedi Master Indara (Carrie-Anne Moss) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.
Jedi Master Indara (Carrie-Anne Moss) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved. /

Star Wars: The Acolyte takes place approximately 100 years before The Phantom Menace, making it the first time the High Republic Jedi will appear in live-action Star Wars. The High Republic is an era that takes place roughly 100-500 years before The Phantom Menace.

The Jedi of this time period have been explored in The High Republic books, comics, audio dramas, and the animated television series Young Jedi Adventures. These stories mostly took place 200-350 years before The Phantom Menace, meaning The Acolyte is set closer to the events of the prequel trilogy.

The Acolyte will seemingly bridge the two eras, showing how the High Republic's Jedi Order becomes the Jedi Order seen in the prequels. From aesthetics to their presence around the galaxy, these are some of the key differences between the Jedi Order of these two eras.

Jedi Robes

(L-R): Vernestra Rwoh (Rebecca Henderson) and Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved. /

Jedi Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae), Jedi Master Vernestra Rwoh (Rebecca Henderson), and other Jedi characters in The Acolyte's marketing are seen wearing gold and white robes, a more ornate style not seen in the prequels. In the High Republic era, most Jedi owned two sets of robes: Temple robes and mission robes. The Temple robes were white and gold and worn not only at the Jedi Temple but also for public events and ceremonial purposes.

The plainer mission robes were brown and gold, closer to the style of robes the Jedi wore during the prequels and to what Obi-Wan Kenobi wears in A New Hope. As the name indicates, mission robes tended to be worn during missions and combat.

Jedi Master Indara (Carrie-Anne Moss) appears to be wearing mission robes during her duel with Mae (Amandla Stenberg) in The Acolyte trailers, more of which was exclusively shown after the credits during The Phantom Menace's 25th anniversary theatrical re-release.


(L-R, front row): Yord Fandar (Charlie Barnett), Jedi Padawan Jecki Lon (Dafne Keen) and Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, exclusively on Disney+. ©2024 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved. /

Other than Mace Windu's purple lightsaber and the Jedi Temple Guards' yellow lightsabers, most of the Jedi during the prequel era have blue or green lightsabers. There is generally more lightsaber color diversity during the High Republic. This is consistent with the lightsabers shown in The Acolyte's marketing, with the lineup of Jedi who are swept aside at the end of The Acolyte's first trailer having an array of blue, green, and yellow lightsabers.

This also matches up with previous High Republic stories, featuring Jedi Master and Wayseeker Orla Jareni's double-bladed white lightsaber, Jedi Master Loden Greatstorm's yellow lightsaber, and Jedi youngling Lys Solay's purple lightsaber in Young Jedi Adventures.

There are more than just single-bladed and double-bladed lightsabers. For example, Vernestra is able to turn her purple lightsaber into a lightwhip, which has also been teased in The Acolyte's marketing as Vernestra makes her live-action debut.

While there are many lightsaber colors and styles, the Jedi do not have red lightsabers. A red lightsaber requires the weapon's kyber crystal to be bled through using the dark side. Red lightsabers are associated with the Sith, who have been supposedly extinct for many centuries by the time of The Acolyte, long before the High Republic era even began. This is why the Jedi in The Acolyte's trailers are alarmed to see someone wielding a red lightsaber, as they have likely never seen a red lightsaber before, let alone someone who may be a Sith Lord.

Jedi Padawan Ram Jomaram, who is a mechanical genius, does create a device in the novel Escape from Valo by Daniel José Older and Alyssa Wong that allows him to temporarily change lightsaber colors. The device essentially acts as a filter that makes his yellow lightsaber temporarily appear red, but this is different from an actual red lightsaber.

Jedi Outposts

Star Wars: The Living Force by John Jackson Miller. Image credit: Star /

During the High Republic, Jedi were stationed on many planets throughout the Outer Rim in installations known as Jedi outposts. Jedi would live at these outposts for extended periods of time, forming connections with the planet's local people and protecting them from various threats. Many Jedi Padawans went through their training while stationed at one of these outposts and felt more connected to these locations than to the Jedi Temple on Coruscant.

By the time of the prequels, most of these Jedi outposts had been shut down as the Republic deemed them inessential and not worth the financial and logistical measures needed to maintain them. As seen in the novel The Living Force by John Jackson Miller, set about a year before The Phantom Menace, the outpost closures have left these planets more vulnerable to pirate attacks.

Without the outposts, the Jedi are less visible to everyday people, and their presence throughout the galaxy feels diminished. This causes some to lose faith in the Jedi Order and emboldens pirates and other threats. This is partly why it is a big deal in The Living Force when all twelve members of the Jedi Council, along with Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan, travel to the planet Kwenn.

The databank entry for The Acolyte's Jedi Master Torbin (Dean-Charles Chapman) states that he is "stationed at a Jedi outpost," so at least one of these installations will be playing a role in the upcoming series.


Wayseekers were Jedi who traveled around the galaxy on their own, operating alone and following the will of the Force instead of the commands of the Jedi Council. Orla Jareni was one of numerous Jedi during the High Republic who became a Wayseeker.

She believed strongly in balance and many other tenets of the Jedi Order, but she disagreed with the Jedi Council's dogmatic teachings, partly due to a traumatic experience from her past. Orla became a Wayseeker so she could remain a Jedi and continue helping others without being beholden to the Jedi Council. Her faith was in the Force itself, not the Order.

By the time Obi-Wan was a Jedi Padawan, there were no longer any Wayseekers in the Jedi Order. In the novel Padawan by Kiersten White, a young Obi-Wan was curious about the concept and believed that Qui-Gon would've made an ideal Wayseeker.

Vernestra became a Wayseeker for a time but is no longer a Wayseeker in the latest books and comics. The Acolyte showrunner Leslye Headland has said that Vernestra is "very rarely in the mission robes" and "more of a high-ranking official" in the live-action series, so it seems her Wayseeking days are far behind her.

There may not be any Wayseekers in The Acolyte, although it is possible that the Wookiee Jedi Kelnacca (Joonas Suotamo) may be one as, according to his databank entry, Kelnacca "is a loner who lives a solitary life."

Even if there aren't any Wayseekers in the show, it is still worth noting as a significant example of how the High Republic Jedi Order allowed and even encouraged its members to be free-spirited and open-minded, offering a path for those seeking a more independent lifestyle.

Views of the Force

Star Wars The High Republic Character Encyclopedia cover. Image Credit: /

The publishing side of The High Republic has explored how nearly every Jedi views the Force differently. This is perhaps best captured in an excerpt from the novel Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule:

"What [Avar Kriss] heard as a song, Elzar Mann saw as a deep, endless, storm-tossed sea. The Wookiee Burryaga was a single leaf on a gigantic tree with deep-dug roots and sky-high limbs. Douglas Sunvale saw the Force as a huge, interlocked set of gears, made of an endless variety of materials from crystal to bone. Bell Zettifar danced with fire. Loden Greatstorm danced with the wind... All of the Jedi were the Force, and the Force was all of them."

Charles Soule

This is just a small taste of how open-minded the High Republic Jedi generally are. How all of their interpretations of the Force are treated as equally valid. Different viewpoints are still accepted during the prequels, but there is overall more of a right way and a wrong to view the Force, which frustrates Jedi like Qui-Gon and Anakin Skywalker, who likely would've fit in well among the High Republic Jedi.

From The Acolyte's marketing, it seems that Sol may be more like the aforementioned High Republic Jedi while Jedi Knight Yord Fandar (Charlie Barnett) is more rigid in his thinking, including in his relationship with the Force. If this is the case, it will be intriguing to see how Sol's philosophy has impacted his former Padawan, Mae, and his current Padawan, Jecki Lon (Dafne Keen).

The Acolyte creator explains the show's varied team of writers. The Acolyte creator explains the show's varied team of writers. dark. Next

The Acolyte's two-episode premiere debuts on June 4, only on Disney+.