Reptilian and bird-like creatures with long necks and six limbs (four arms, two legs). The Skeksis are rapacious, whimsical and cruel.

The Skeksis are thousands of years old. Despite their current state, the Skeksis were not always cruel and merciless. Some were gregarious and outgoing, while others preferred to keep their secrets in solitude. But time and power corrupted the hearts and minds of the Skeksis lords, turning their intelligence to suspicion and their ambition into bloodthirsty competition. By the time of the events of “The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance”, the Skeksis have become a villainous group of selfish, sadistic lords who rule over the Gelfling. They are vain, callous, pompous and obsessed with cheating death. 

Because the Skeksis are not originally from Thra, they have been able to use their advanced technology to keep the more primitive and rustic Gelfling under their thumb and dependent on their generosity. They built a castle around the Crystal of Truth and harness its power in secret in order to extend their own lives. Their experiments have corrupted the Crystal of Truth and created a sickness that is spreading across Thra known as the Darkening. They essentially draw energy from the land to keep themselves alive. 

However the Gelfling remain unaware and continue to be loyal to the Skeksis, who rule over them.

While the Gelfling strive for peace, the Skeksis enjoy nothing more then sadistic games and wanton cruelty. They love the finer things in life and spend their days adorned in voluminous robes and garish jewelry, feasting and loafing about their huge castle. They hide their villainous nature behind a smile. But their love of a good party and a fancy necklace hides a deep fear of their own mortality and an obsession with cheating death.

Even the music they listen to (and they do love a good tune) might sound discordant and screechy to our ears. Because they themselves are discordant and screechy. All they care about is themselves and their own pleasure.

List of Skeksis

The Ritual-Master



At the close of the Age of Harmony, the second Great Conjunction occurred and marked the beginning of the Age of Division. During this Great Conjunction, the urSkeks stepped into the light of the suns that filtered through the Crystal and refracted through the urSkeks’ mirrors. Unintentionally, the urSkeks were split into two separate creatures: the Skeksis and the urRu.

The Skeksis were the personification of their destructive, cruel and aggressive impulses while the urRu were the personification of their creative, healing and passive impulses. For every urRu, there was a corresponding Skeksis. Immediately following the split, confused fighting erupted. Two Skeksis, and therefore two urRu, were murdered.

Destructive behavior continued, and one of the Skeksis struck the Crystal and cracked it. The resulting release of energy – the kakoi – broke off a dagger-shaped shard and changed everything.

The Crystal darkened, turning from pure bright white to dimly glowing violet. And with the darkening of the Crystal, so too did the world turn dark. A blighted wasteland slowly and inexorably crept from the Castle and strange creatures began appearing throughout Thra’s wilderness.

The rejuvenation chart of the Skeksis

Lords of the Dark Crystal

After the initial shock of the cracking of the Crystal, the Skeksis settled into their roles as Lords of the Dark Crystal. Led by Emperor skekSo, they played the role of extravagant hosts to both Gelfling and Podling alike, holding grand feasts and games.

Meanwhile, over the course of hundreds of trine, the Skeksis went from eccentric nobles to mad despots. With the passage of time, their powers began to fade. The Skeksis scientist called skekTek experimented with the Dark Crystal. It discovered how to use the refracted light of the Crystal to drain the essence and weaken the will of Gelfling and Podlings, turning them into mindless slaves.

This final act shocked the Gelfling out of their naiveté. Why would the Skeksis harm them? The Skeksis provided no answer other than to cull more of the Gelfling for use as slaves and sources of essence.

The Garthim War

When the Skeksis learned of the Prophecy, they immediately sought to thwart it. In their madness and paranoia, they created the Garthim soldiers and Crystal Bat spies, dispatching them to hunt down and exterminate the Gelfling. They even manufactured false shards to hinder the Gelfling in their quest to heal the Crystal.

Ultimately, the Skeksis were seemingly successful in eliminating all but two of the Gelfling — Jen and Kira.

See Also