Home Entertainment There’s a bloody reason why STAR WARS Sith lightsabers are always red

There’s a bloody reason why STAR WARS Sith lightsabers are always red

2 min read


Bad guys always dress in black, but in Star Wars? They normally also have a delightful red highlight to their wardrobe, courtesy of their iconic crimson lightsabers. While just about any Force-user has made use of a lightsaber spectrum of colours that range from white to black and everything in between them, red has been noticeably off-limits to the Jedi.

Basically, anyone wielding a red lightsaber is a proper bastard. But why? Why only Dark Side users such as the Sith?

Well that’s one question that has finally been answered, thanks to author EK Johnston’s new “Ahsoka” novel which focuses on the best character to ever come out of the Clone Wars. If you know your Star Wars, you know that Jedi typically use Kyber crystals to help focus the energy within their lightsabers. In the new continuity established since Disney took over, these crystals were rare and would only reveal themselves to Force wielders if they were worthy of them.

Which meant that the crystals would never reveal themselves to Dark Side users. According to the novel via Screen Rant, this resulted in the Sith stealing the Kyber crystals from Jedi, usually via bloody circumstances. When a Dark Sider placed the crystal within their own saber hilt and ignited it for the first time, the use of Dark Force energy would then result in making the crystal “bleed” and only being capable of creating a red blade.


This doesn’t just apply to the Sith however. With the planet of Ilum completely strip-mined of all Kyber crystals, Ahsoka acquires new gems for her own pair of lightsabers by stripping them from the weapon of the Inquisitor known as the Sixth Brother in a deadly duel that leaves him dead. The re-activation of these crystals in her new lightsabers results in the blades shimmering with a white light, which were seen in the second season of Star Wars Rebels. Neat.

And now you know! The Kyber crystals can be found on a handful of planets, including the Jedi mecca of Jeddha which will be in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The crystals are apparently also used in the construction of the Death Star super-laser, thus bringing the occupation of that planet full circle once Rogue One kicks off.

Last Updated: October 18, 2016

One Comment

  1. James Francis

    October 18, 2016 at 18:10

    Actually it’s red because while in post of Star Wars, it was decided to give lightsabers different colours. They were originally concepted as white, but while doing the post effect, the decision was made to give Luke and Obi-wan blue lightsabers. As a result it made sense to give Darth Vader a red lightsaber. George Lucas liked this, as red is a useful colour to designate a villain. He felt it made it simpler for the audience.

    The result was that some early Star Wars toys actually have yellow lightsabers, which have made them rather valuable collectors items. The red stuck, but was not a definite yet. You can find posters and such of Ben and Luke with red blades.

    When the third of the original trilogy came around, Luke’s lightsaber went from blue to green so not to clash with the blue sky in the Sarlac Pit sequence.

    So no fan lore required to retrofit the motivation. Just the magic of movie making. If fans want this level of pedantic justification, they can’t moan about Midi-chlorians. Can’t we use all this creative energy to rather cure cancer or bring back Firefly?


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