I..I..I..I.. am.. still emperor...
~ SkekSo's last words before he died.
The Skeksis joined nothing except to make new combinations of evil. SkekSo the Emperor in the first days of his glory proclaimed otherwise; he held court not only over the Skeksis but over many Gelfling that went to serve in the castle. They shone in his glory; they carved and sang and painted and danced from the pleasure of the court. On all the days of feasting the Emperor led the processions and the dances of life and pleasure; his voice heard above a multitude; and always in the tournaments he bore down all rivals. In those days the Skeksis were still radient with energy, never still. But that radience diminished as their true nature showed and worsened; none was more terribly changed than the Emperor. His power he kept till the end; no other Skeksis held ascendancy other than through skekSo's favor, easily withdrawn.
~ The World of the Dark Crystal

SkekSo was the Emperor of the Skeksis and a minor antagonist in The Dark Crystal, and the main antagonist in the 2019 Netflix prequel series The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance. His spiritual other half in the film is the Mystic master, UrSu. In the film, SkekSo is only seen shortly before his death.

He was performed by the late Jim Henson, with the late Jerry Nelson providing his voice. In the prequel series, he is voiced by Jason Isaacs, who also played William Tavington and Zhao.


In the early trine of his reign, SkekSo was originally an energetic ruler who enjoyed lavish festivity and sporting events, which he invariably won (as described in "The World of the Dark Crystal"). However, as he aged, he became cruel, paranoid, aggressive and spiteful, even toward his fellow Skeksis, elevating individuals to high positions only to depose them afterwards.


SkekSo had ruled the Skeksis since the split of the Crystal, and the division of the UrSkeks. Initially, SkekSo's reign was initially a benevolent one, as he shoned with glory, leading feast processions and dances, and also beating all his rivals in tournaments. As the Skeksis aged and diminished, SkekSo's authority is kept through favoritism, suspicion, and sheer courage. However when the beginning of his declining health came, SkekSo started ordering the enslavement of both Gelflings and Podlings to drain their essence so it can be drank by him. After the Garthim Wars, his condition nevertheless continued deteriorating, with SkekSo's sight soon weakened and his body rotting with ulcers. He then eventually died before he would be given a further 999 and one trine of life to live from the Ceremony of the Sun.

Though not shown, in a deleted scene, the Emperor's remains were gathered and then placed into an ornate casket. The three highest-ranking Skeksis (SkekZok, SkekSil, and SkekUng) carried the casket to the mausoleum, with the others following in single file. The casket is then set on top of a small pedestal before SkekZok removed a ring from the contents. The remains are eventually cremated by the Skeksis throwing burning rocks.

Afterwards, SkekSo is then ultimately be succeeded by SkekUng the Garthim Master as the new Emperor of the Skeksis.





  • For the final deterioration of SkekSo, a puppet was made of a wax with high melting points so that it would crumble and melt away at different rates. Skeksis decompose so quickly because they have no soul to slow the process.
  • Although no performer was given a puppeteering credit for the Emperor in the film's ending credits, it can be inferred (based on information given in "The Making of the Dark Crystal") that Jim Henson performed SkekSo.


           MuppetsTitle Villains

The Muppets
Doc Hopper | Snake Walker | Nicky Holiday | Long John Silver | Blind Pew | Captain Flint | K. Edgar Singer | Hugo Krassman | Rachel Bitterman | Wicked Witch of the East | Wicked Witch of the West | Tex Richman | Uncle Deadly | Constantine | Dominic Badguy

Sesame Street
Sam and Sid Sleaze | Ronald Grump | Huxley | Bill the Bug | Pesties | Humongous Chicken | Chewie the Cookie

Creature Shop
SkekSès (SkekSo, SkekZok, SkekUng, SkekSil, SkekTek, SkekAyuk, SkekNa, SkekShod, SkekOk & SkekEkt) | Darkened Creatures | Jareth | Goblin Army

Wheel-Stealer | Crown-Grabber | Flute-Snatcher

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