‘Somehow, Palpatine has returned’ is the best new ‘Star Wars’ meme

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Last month saw the end of an era with the release of Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker.

The film, which was the final entry in the Skywalker saga, was highly anticipated by fans. As do all things with a passionate fan following, the film impressed and disappointed in near-equal measure. Many fans lauded the film for its stunning visuals and exciting conclusion to the saga, while others felt let down by directorial decisions and ill-explained plot points. One such plot point was the return of Emperor Sheev Palpatine, which was teased in trailers in the lead-up to the film’s release. One line in particular, spoken by Oscar Isaac—who plays Poe Dameron—united fans.

Isaac’s general exhaustion in the final installment of the trilogy seemed to speak to fans. While not everyone was upset to see Palpatine return, the explanation—or lack thereof—for his reemergence in the film left a sour taste in many fan’s mouths. Isaac’s tired proclamation that “somehow, Palpatine has returned” quickly inspired a fresh wave of memes.

The memes started flooding in. They were primarily focused around people’s exasperation with the tired, regurgitated storyline and Isaac’s perfect encapsulation of the emotion. “I swear I saw Oscar Isaac’s soul die in that moment,” one fan wrote.

At least disappointed fans have Isaac to flawlessly capture their frustration. An icon.

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Nahila Bonfiglio

Nahila Bonfiglio

Nahila Bonfiglio reports on geek culture and gaming. Her work has also appeared on KUT's Texas Standard (Austin), KPAC-FM (San Antonio), and the Daily Texan.