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The Worst Things Princess Leia Has Ever Done

Princess Leia is one of the true heroes of the Star Wars universe. She's compassionate. She seeks, embraces, and calls for positive change. Throughout the course of Star Wars, she tries to establish a working form of government that benefits all — not just people who seek power and thrive in the Empire.

Leia is a true beacon of light and the galaxy far, far away probably would have been overtaken by the dark side if it weren't for her lifelong efforts, undertaken at continual risk of life and limb — and eventually so impressive that she found herself in charge of the entire Resistance movement. Princess Leia, played by the late Carrie Fisher, was one of the truly good people in a universe in which it's easier to join the dark side out of fear and a lust for power than to join the light side.

Princess Leia mostly did good deeds, but there are a few questionable decisions in her past. While most of the choices she made were for the greater good, here are the worst things Princess Leia has ever done — outside of calling Han Solo a "stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf herder," of course.

Sent rebels to their deaths on Vrogas Vas

It isn't depicted on the big screen, but in the Star Wars comic series launched in 2015 (specifically Darth Vader #13), Leia sends rebels to Vrogas Vas to take down Darth Vader, who's presumably alone. Alone or not, Darth Vader is one of the most powerful forces in Star Wars history, and predictably to seemingly everyone but Leia, he defeats the rebels as easy as a mere mortal takes out the trash on a Sunday morning.

Leia didn't know Darth Vader was as powerful as he was at the time and didn't want the rebels to be killed, all of which goes without saying, but she still underestimated the Sith Lord, causing unnecessary casualties and likely boosting Darth Vader's ego because of her misguided play-calling. It's certainly not the worst act of all time in the Star Wars universe, but it was a foolhardy mistake that set back the Rebellion at a time when they could ill afford to lose any members.

Unknowingly kissed her brother

Return of the Jedi revealed that Luke Skywalker and Leia were not only related but twins, and not just any twins but the offspring of Darth Vader. Before that occurrence, Luke and Leia flirted with one another in A New Hope and they famously kissed in The Empire Strikes Back.

While the kiss was harmless and George Lucas didn't quite know where the relationship was going at the time of the smooch, Leia and Luke are still brother and sister. Luckily for Lucas, he didn't completely write himself into a corner and made that the sole kiss between the two, not to mention it wasn't Hollywood romantic and served to prove a point more than gain a lover. The fact that this is one of the worst things Leia has ever done goes to show how good-hearted she is.

Put C-3PO in danger by making the droid her spy

After forming the Resistance, Leia needed someone to collect information on her enemies and she inevitably chose the smoothest, calmest, and collected being in the galaxy... C-3PO. Years later, the audience would find out that Threepio was built by none other than Anakin Skywalker, who, of course, morphed into Darth Vader, but all of that is beside the point.

Leia, with good intentions, because those are the only kind she has, put C-3PO in danger by making the droid her spy. One could argue that Threepio was promoted, possibly bringing self-worth, fulfillment, and purpose to the droid — if droids even care about those things. Plus, Leia needed to introduce espionage to try to get an edge on her opponents, which might not be moral in the real world but is acceptable in a galaxy consumed by war in which people blast and destroy each other on a routine basis. On the other hand, if there was ever a droid who could give themselves a stress ulcer, it'd be this one. Wasn't there another option?

She was embroiled in the dark side

Leia is the daughter of Darth Vader and the mother of Jacen Solo, who's featured in (the now non-canonical) Star Wars Legends. She also named her other son Anakin Solo, which is a bit burdening because, you know, grandpa Anakin became Darth Vader. Luckily, Anakin grows up to be totally not like his grandfather, but the same can't be said about Jacen, who turns to the dark side and dies because of it.

Jacen starts out as a good kid and trains at the Jedi Academy. He becomes a Jedi Knight (so far, so good) but ends up succumbing to the darkness within him (similar to Anakin) because he believes it's for the greater good — all characters, whether good or bad, believe they're the hero of their own story.

Jacen becomes Darth Caedus after seizing control of the Galactic Alliance, as well as torturing his former apprentice Ben Skywalker for good measure. Possibly worst of all, he kills his aunt Mara Jade Skywalker (Luke's wife), which ultimately leads to his death when his twin sister Jaina is forced to kill him in a lightsaber battle.

Gave birth to Kylo Ren

Leia definitely had a rough go of things when it comes to her children and the battle between good and evil. It's not necessarily her fault things turned out the way they did for all of her family members, especially her father, but she still has a past, present, and future relationship with the dark side. Considering how much good she does for her followers and the Star Wars universe, it's almost heartbreaking to witness.

Rarely is it more heartbreaking than it is with regards to Ben Solo, Leia's canonical son with Han Solo. Introduced as the evil Kylo Ren in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, Ben has found a measure of redemption at the conclusion of the final movie in the Skywalker Saga, but he's done plenty of bad and been linked with the dark side enough — hence the Darth Vader-like mask, red lightsaber, and dark wardrobe — to further show the struggles Leia has with good and evil when it comes to her loved ones. She might have a light soul, but darkness plagues her family.

Handed her son over for Jedi training

Leia sensed darkness surrounding Ben, but instead of facing these problems head-on as a person who routinely fought and defeated the dark side in minor and major battles alike, she pinned her hopes on Luke strengthening young Ben's connection with the light side of the Force through training at Luke's new Jedi Academy. Of course, by the time we meet Ben in The Force Awakens, he's become Kylo Ren, a powerful First Order leader under Supreme Leader Snoke who's clearly full of rage and rightfully has parent issues.

Ben Solo would eventually renounce the Kylo Ren persona, but not before killing fellow students, driving Luke into exile, and killing his father. Because he wasn't fully Sith or Jedi and capable of using both sides' techniques, as well as constantly at war with himself, there was always hope for him to turn to a lighter side of the Force — and he did. He saved the galaxy, ended the Skywalker Saga, and in spite of all of his crimes, he can still be seen as a (complicated) hero. Still, who knows how differently things might have turned out if Leia had simply kept the kid home?

Kept her heritage a secret to benefit her political career

Leia didn't always know she was the daughter of Darth Vader. Unfortunately, that kind of knowledge can sink a political career as politicians are expected to have spotless pasts, above-board presents, and bright futures. Her leadership skills came into play during the Galactic Civil War and countless other battles and decisions, and she had an even brighter political career ahead... until she was exposed as Darth Vader's daughter in the canonical novel Bloodline, virtually ending her life in politics.

It never feels good for your friends and allies to oust you, but hiding her heritage wasn't the most moral move, especially when doing so led to her political gain. In the grand scheme of things, Princess Leia is a moral character and she wants to take down the forces of evil that are threatening the galaxy. Leaders have to make sacrifices and important decisions; keeping her heritage a secret was one such decision, although it inevitably backfired once word got out.

Resigned as senator

Leia resigning as a senator after being ousted in Bloodline is one of the worst things she did because many people counted on her — and Leia let the enemy win. Her counter and next venture: form the Resistance. 

Once again, leaders have to make tough choices and Leia apparently thought it was the best decision to resign. The Resistance played an integral role, to say the least, in bringing down the First Order. She also, full circle and all, helped her son, Ben Solo, escape from the dark side. If that didn't occur, the resurrected Emperor Palpatine might have succeeded in bringing his dastardly plan to pass in The Rise of Skywalker

However, if she'd revealed her true parentage from the beginning, who knows how differently things might have turned out? She wouldn't have had anything left to hide and likely would have climbed the political ranks, putting the New Republic in a position of greater strength against the scattered — but still dangerous — remnants of the Empire.

Choked Jabba to death with his own slave chain

It's hard to blame Leia for deceiving and killing Jabba the Hutt, but murder is still one of the worst things a human can do. In many cases, it's punishable by death.

Han Solo was frozen in carbonite at the end of Empire Strikes Back and brought to Tatooine, where Leia's plan to rescue him from Jabba's slimy clutches went wrong. Unmasked as the true identity of the bounty hunter Boushh, who traveled to Jabba's palace to barter for Solo's carbonite slab, Leia was taken prisoner by Jabba, who forced her to wear a demeaning outfit while remaining by his side.

Leia's captivity didn't last long, of course — Luke and Lando came to the rescue, sparking chaos on Jabba's ship. In the midst of it all, Leia choked Jabba with the same chain that tethered her to him — the ultimate poetic justice. Jabba's fate was deserved, but murder is, justified or not, one of the worst things Leia has ever done.

Got her son impaled by a lightsaber

In The Rise of Skywalker, Leia used the Force and her connection with Kylo Ren to call out to him during a fight between her son and Rey. Leia was trying to reach what remained of his light side — and it worked, but it also led to Kylo being impaled by Rey's lightsaber.

Rey thankfully healed Kylo Ren, leading to his rejection of the dark side and his return to his Ben Solo identity. Still, that was a huge gamble to take — not only for Ben, who would have died if Rey hadn't been aware of the Force's healing powers, but for Leia, who used the last of her own life energy to reach out to Kylo in the first place. Whether her risk paid off or not, it would be the last move Leia made.

Of course, last-ditch efforts are nothing new in the Star Wars universe, and Leia was clearly very in tune with the Force — perhaps she understood Rey's abilities better than she let on, or was able to somehow see how things would work out if she could get through to Kylo. On the other hand, the fact that she chose such a fraught moment to make her move would seem to suggest that it really was the Hail Mary it looked like on the screen — one that could ended very differently.

Knew about Rey's lineage and didn't say anything

It turns out that Rey's parents weren't mere junk traders after all. Rey was, in fact, the granddaughter of Palpatine — and Leia knew the truth before Rey discovered it, but chose not to tell her.

Rey's quest revolved around finding out who she really was, where she came from, and why her Force abilities were so strong. Leia, whatever her motivations, could have helped in a big way at any point, but opted not to. There's major precedent for this kind of deception in the Star Wars saga — after all, Obi-Wan and Yoda both knew that Darth Vader was Anakin Skywalker — and therefore Luke's father — but let him find out during a life-or-death battle with Vader himself. Fortunately, Rey's discovery didn't come with the loss of a hand.

One could easily argue that Rey needed to discover the truth for herself, and there's no telling how a person might react if their new friends revealed they were related to the baddest bad guy in the galaxy. Still, Rey was the heir to the Sith legacy and no one told her. That's more than a little messed up.