Starwars has some insanely powerful characters, space ninja wizard monks, angry space ninja wizard monks, princesses and emperors abound. With stoic bounty hunters and wisecracking smugglers, there's always one character who has managed to stand out from the crowd despite her lack of force powers.
Princess Leia. Armed with nothing but a blaster and perhaps the most memorable hairdo of all time, Leia Skywalker has proven to be integral to the series and without her many battles would have been lost before they even began.
With a great sense of politics, force sensitive abilities and a bravery that is entirely unparalleled in the series, Leia is the other (better) half of Luke Skywalker. While Luke spends most of the movies angsting over losing some random homeless dude he legit met a few hours ago, Leia sucks up losing her entire home planet, buckles down and gets to work.
With no magical space powers like being able to choke people with her mind or hurl rocks with just a thought, Leia is forced to think outside the box. She's a crack shot with a blaster with the majority of shots she takes in the movies landing, and has an insanely good head for politics and strategy. Without her leadership, the rebellion would have fallen to pieces long before it ever had really gotten started.
Below are 25 facts showcasing how Princess Leia is more powerful than any Jedi or Sith in the series.
25 Lucked Out
It's awkward to call either of the Skywalker twins "lucky" considering their dad turned evil and their mom perished from sadness. In the end though, one of them ended up princess of an entire planet and the other... farmed moisture in a desert.
The Force was definitely showing some favoritism on that one. One of the things that make her shockingly strong without people really recognizing it is just the simple way of how lucky she is. It entirely offsets Han Solo's bad luck. In fact, when Leia is around things just sorta work out and the group succeeds. When she and Han are in the same place that's when things get weird as his bad luck gets them into all sorts of bad situations and then her good luck gets them right out again.
24 Better Half
We can all agree Luke was a pretty crappy Jedi. He wasn't very good with the force, he was headstrong, unruly, and reckless, even disobeying Yoda a few times during their training.
Heck Yoda even just straight up gave up on Luke at one point.
Which makes sense since not even Yoda wanted Luke to become a Jedi.
When they were both born Yoda said that of the two, Leia was the better choice to become a Jedi thanks to her natural strength, clarity, and force of willpower. He was actually excited to hopefully one day train her and Luke... well, yeah, he wasn't interested in Luke.
It was Obi-Wan who was all aboard the Luke train, and now we can see how well that turned out.
23 Strong Willed
Left in a cell aboard the Death Star, Leia was interrogated very carefully and thoroughly by Darth Vader and a Mind Probe Droid. These are probably the two most terrifying things to see in conjunction with each other as one is an all-powerful Sith Lord and the other is a droid equipped with all sorts of nastiness to get into your brain.
Somehow, despite most people needing Jedi-Training in order to resist such methods and even then breaking, Leia managed to resist her interrogators through sheer stubbornness and force of will. Meanwhile, Rey, even with all her magical super strong force powers, nearly lost to a wannabe Sith alone.
If Leia had been trained in using the Force she likely could have gone toe to toe with the Emporer himself.
22 Not My Choice
I don't know about you but if I'd been adopted by a kind and loving royal family and had every want and need looked after, well, I'd call it quits. I'd never work a day in my life, I'd institute a law that would make all citizens required to wear miniskirts and that'd be that.
Leia's will is apparently stronger than mine, and she made the hard decision to be more than a Princess. She wanted to actually make a difference in politics and help shape and move the Galaxy, and she decided this while she was still only a child.
This was the first time Leia would show her strength of character but it wouldn't be her last.
21 Hard Work
A decision of that magnitude requires training, and Leia put in the hours for it. Relentlessly studying and working tirelessly, she hurled herself into the academic world and excelled at it.
She then decided that it wasn't enough and came to the conclusion she also wanted to beat the living tar out of people. She began to train in self-defense, learning almost Jedi-like techniques to keep her mind clear and focused on the now as she became a whiz with basic weapons.
This was all at the age of eleven, by fourteen she was a junior legislator.
Meanwhile, Luke was breaking out in acne and starting to realize farming moisture was really, really boring. He'd take his first steps into becoming the whiny adult he is as Leia quickly mastered skill after skill.
20 The Cost Of The Mission
So Luke starts being too depressed to function after his weird hermit buddy gets iced and needs a pep talk just to get back on track. Guess who's there to comfort him? Leia, the girl who after being interrogated saw her home planet with all her family and friends on it blown to kingdom come.
She's even aware it's probably her fault, she tries to convince them its somewhere else (still lying though because she can't risk the location being discovered no matter what) and they still blow up Alderaan.
She sucks that all up though and soldiers on, keeping Luke on the ball and focusing on the mission until the Death Star is destroyed.
19 Smoke And Mirrors
She eventually realized the Empire was horrible and at the age of sixteen began actively helping the Rebellion. She came up with amazing plans in order to help pass valuable information and resources while keeping her cover. This really showcased her strategic talents.
It also showed that she wasn't afraid to be placed in danger for the greater good. During one of her plans, she was to stage being taken by Sabine Wren so she could transfer the location of several hidden Imperial bases to the rebel forces. Things didn't go exactly to plan and the pair wound up being attacked by a bounty hunter. Thinking on the fly, Leia managed to pin the entire attack on IG-88, saving her cover.
Poor evil droid, show up to collect a bounty, get beaten back by kids and then take the fall for their cunning plan.
18 Grand Theft Spaceship
Despite the very real danger she'd been in during the fake stealing that had almost become a real one, Leia continued to assist the rebellion. Normally she'd simply allow rebels to steal whatever ship she was on at the time, which began to give her a bit of a reputation.
During one of her plans to help a rebel crew steal a series of spaceships, her reputation of things being stolen out from under her complicated things as the Imperial Commander had tightened restrictions. Using some really complicated methods, Leia managed to stage being taken hostage and then freed herself, distracting and confusing the commander. While he was bumbling around, the rebels managed to steal three spaceships and pretended to wound Leia.
When the commander finally got himself in order and showed up to help, he found his personal shuttle and three spaceships missing.
Leia then berated him for his failure and managed to pass her bad reputation at losing things onto him.
17 Puppets And Strings
With her combat skills and her connections with the rebellion, Leia could have ditched politics and become a full-time rebel. Instead, she believed in her convictions and decided she'd try to change things from the inside. When her adoptive father, Bail Organa, retired and stepped down, she took his place. During her election, she even met with Vader and The Emporer and was struck speechless by their evil auras.
After winning the election, Senator Organa did her best to try and make actual change happen. She quickly realized though that the Senate just blindly agreed with everything the Emporer said due to fear and no change could ever occur inside of it.
She also got her first real taste of betrayal and how it always comes wrapped like a gift.
16 Message Of Hope
Leia took what she learned in the Senate and began applying it to her tactics. She continued to fight alongside the rebellion and was willing to put herself in harm's way to ensure a brighter tomorrow.
Eventually, this all came to a head when nobody but the Senator was willing to transport the plans for the Empire's new superweapon into rebel hands. Leia found herself warping into an active combat zone while troops on the surface of Scarif transmitted plans to her.
Barely escaping, Leia managed to successfully transfer the plans into a droid once there pursuers had caught up to her ship.
Her cover blown she surrendered to spare any more bloodshed and stood strong in the face of her tormentors.
15 Quick Thinking
Han and Luke's rescue mission was extremely poorly planned and even more poorly executed. While Obi-Wan snuck around and remained unspotted, they were essentially kicking open doors and shooting the place up.
After freeing Leia, she found her self entirely unimpressed with her would-be rescuers floundering around and making the situation worse.
She rolled up her sleeves and began rescuing them, grabbing Luke's rifle out of his hands and shooting their way to freedom. While it did almost end up destroying them, at least she used her ability to think quickly for something, which is more than Han and Luke were doing.
Leia is the one who rescued herself, in the end, Han Solo just provided the ride home.
14 Moral High-Ground
Leia has had every reason to just give up on the rebellion, she was a rich high standing political figure who was beloved by her people. If she'd done so before the events of Rogue One, she could have lived a normal privileged life.
Instead, she chose to fight and to stand up for the people the Empire either forgot or oppressed.
Han Solo tried to convince her to give up, he'd monologue about not wanting to be here or not wanting to do this. Leia didn't let this get her down, she believed he was better and she knew she was too. Eventually, even the scruffy nerf-herder came around to her way of thinking and fought the good fight.
13 Battle Stations
After losing so much and having people belittle or mock her beliefs at every turn, Leia sat down and commanded an entire battle. Thanks to her and the other commander's strategic brilliance, the rebellion actually had a shot. Sure, it was one in a million and only a total of four pilots out of thirty-one, but thems the breaks.
Without Leia's leadership, some no-name backwater bush pilot like Luke wouldn't ever have even had the chance to listen to some deceased guy whispering in his ear.
We don't know what Leia did immediately following the battle of Yavin 4 but we hope it had something to do with a hot bath and a long cry.
12 An Extra Sense
Although she might have been able to use the Force, as well as a Jedi, Leia was still Force Sensitive. This was sort of the equivalent of having a very powerful constant buff in an RPG that's always on and takes no resources to sustain.
Leia was treated to bit more of... well everything.
In regards to natural talent being Force Sensitive was like being that one dude in class everyone just liked. She had better luck, learned things quicker, was a little smarter and essentially destined to do great things.
She used this power to do some pretty impressive things, however normally it wound up being used like a GPS directly tuned to Luke.
11 Continued Survival
Not content with just blowing up their planet, the Empire decided to hunt down all surviving Alderaanians? Alderaanites? Heck with it, people from Alderaan.
After the battle of Yavin 4, Leia discovers this thanks to the survival of a single Y wing fighter from the attack on the Death Star. Together the pair go AWOL from the rebellion in order to try and sort out a way to keep all their people safe.
Leia proves how dedicated she is to cleaning up her own messes without involving others, throughout the entire arc. Luke, Han, and the rebellion sit back and don't really show up. Aware that she's partly to blame for the genocide Leia struggles to save her people, all with a 10k bounty on her head courtesy of the Empire.
10 Princess No Longer
Eventually, Leia managed to round up all the survivors of Alderaan and was working towards rehoming them. It was a difficult mission, one in which Leia was betrayed several times including by some of her own people. Threats from within almost consumed the Aldernese as several of the people Leia tried to recruit branded her a traitor and in part blamed her for their predicament.
Despite all the hardships and setbacks, Leia soon managed to unite and lead her people to safety.
The Empire could no longer get them. Of course, they needed a leader now and Leia had proven herself capable, which is why like a flock of baby ducklings, she chose to kick them from their nest and told them to elect a new princess before ollieing out across the stars.
9 When Good Plans Go Bad
Sometimes things just go FUBAR. Leia, Han, and Luke must have gotten tipsy before gathering up the droids and Chewbacca because there is no other explanation for why they thought this plan was a good idea. There's even less explanation for why it worked.
The Idea: Infiltrate the largest weapon factory the Empire had under the guise of an envoy from Jabba the Hutt. They would then sneakily blow it up.
The Execution: Upon talking their way in, Han Solo straight up punched a guy in full view of everyone. The group then proceeded to fight their way through the facility barely surviving scrape after scrape and a nasty fight with Darth Vader, in which Leia shot him point blank range with the main cannons on an AT-AT walker. They then discovered the Imperials had fixed the reactor they'd sabotaged and Luke had to go back to unfix it.
8 Gladitorial Combat
Despite not being a Jedi, Leia does know her way around a Lightsaber.
At one point in the comics between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, Luke finds himself in the position of the damsel in distress for a change. Captured by Imperial Stormtroopers and a dangerous gangster, Leia, Han and Han's ex-wife, all get together to save him.
Near the climax of the rescue mission, an EMP goes off which disables all of their weapons while they're surrounded by Stormtroopers.
There's also a horrible alien monster running around in an old-school-looking gladiatorial ring.
The reinforcements for The Empire are also on the way.
R2D2 for whatever reason has a ton of lightsabers though and hands them out to the group, with Chewie taking two and they quickly cut their way to rescue Luke.
7 Danger Close
The Star Wars Comics sure are wild. They're also really good and you should definitely read them, each character gets one hundred times cooler in the comics. Leia, for example, tried to ambush Darth Vader, got caught and Force choked half to her end before Darth Vader tossed her aside to deal with bigger problems.
Any sane person who valued their own life more than the mission at the point would have walked away and become a Herder of Nerfs or something. Leia instead grabbed a commlink and ordered every single bomber in the area to drop their payload directly on herself in the hopes of it killing Vader as well.
Thankfully she was spared as all her bombers wound up being killed but still. A for Effort Leia.
6 Sock It To Her
She has one heck of a mean right hook. Immediately after failing to blow herself up in a blaze of glory to hopefully eliminate Darth Vader, Leia decides to finally throw in the towel on her burgeoning plans to become an assassin and to instead rescue Han, Luke, and Chewbacca.
Apparently, they can't even handle the simplest of tasks without her and have been captured yet again by the Empire.
One of Darth Vaders biggest allies, Doctor Aphra, has managed to round them all up nice and neat. Before she could take them to her master though, Leia snuck up behind her and knocked her out with a single punch.
Leia is their deus ex machina. The group was dead to rights by Aphra and Leia just shows up and one-punches her.
5 Broken Mind
Poor Eneb Ray, he really did do his best and to his credit, he managed to take out the Emporers body double. They don't give medals in the rebellion though for almost. Instead, Eneb got a face full of lightning and a brain full of crazy.
He decided that Leia and the other commanders of the rebellion were too softhearted and so he'd toughen em up a bit by wholesale destroying the defenseless inmates of a prison. Luke and Han get captured again and he says he's going to blow them up unless Leia shoots an inmate herself. She refuses, turns off gravity and delivers a severe mid-air beatdown to Eneb before explaining she's going to try and get him the help he needs.
In no-win situations, she sticks to her guns and always manages to take the high ground.
4 Daring Plan
The Highjacking of the Harbinger is almost as ridiculous and screw-up prone as that attack on the weapons facility.
The Plan: Break a siege by stealing a Star Destroyer and then sail it right past the blockade by pretending they're Imperials. (Since that's worked so well before).
Before we get to the execution we should mention literally nobody but Luke thought this plan was a good idea which should have raised a few flags.
The Execution: Blow the heck out of the ship, damage its reactor so badly that the Imperial crew abandon ship and report it as destroyed and then capture its husk.
This would prove disastrous later but for now, it's nice to see even Leia can endorse absolutely insane plans if there's a chance of success.
3 I Am The Captain Now
So flying a ship with an incredibly damaged main reactor is incredibly dangerous as it turns out. Days after capturing the Harbinger, it was in serious danger of just straight up exploding. Luke, R2-D2, and Chewie, were doing their best to fix the issue while Leia and Han argued over who should be Captain.
Eventually, by just jettisoning the reactor, they managed to fix the issue temporarily and jumped to hyperspace... only for the engines to straight up die after coming out of it.
Han argued that they should stop for repairs and Leia said that they needed to press on. Unable to come to a decision they decided the best way to solve this would be a race to the bridge, first to arrive becomes Captain.
Leia beat the smuggler at his own game and outraced him by kicking him in the shins and then launching herself out into space and was named Captain.
2 Can't Stop Won't Stop
The situation just kept getting worse. More mechanical failings and a unit of specialized stormtroopers called SCAR troopers Task Force 99 (so you know they're hardcore) boarding the ship had caused the crew to give up any hope of stealth. With no other option, Han rammed The Harbinger into another Star Destroyer and began the process of dropping off supplies to the planet below.
Meanwhile, an all-out-war raged throughout the Star Destroyer with the captured ship taking more and more fire.
Leia and Han desperately held the bridge while rebel forces defended the ship as long as they could.
It's amazing Leia and Han held the bridge as long as they could but eventually the found themselves being pushed back with nowhere to go.
1 Daring Escape
With no options left, Leia and Han finally called it quits and the group began abandoning The Harbinger. Not a very easy task when you're stuck on the bridge away from any escape pods.
Thankfully, Leia is absolutely fearless and much like her Father, refuses to perish. When things get tough for her she blows herself up. As Chewbacca, Luke, and R2-D2, all find conventional ways to escape the doomed Star Destroyer, Leia and Han plant bombs all over the bridge and grab some breathing masks.
They launch themselves out into space, barely managing to survive and... right away get back to arguing.
It's a good thing Leia had all the experience using the Force to survive in a vacuum for later events right?