We here at ComicsVerse are huge STAR WARS fans. And, if you’ve read my work, you know I’m the biggest fan in the bunch. So, it should come as no surprise that as soon as the new trailer for THE LAST JEDI was released on YouTube (shockingly, I didn’t catch it during Monday Night Football…) went live, I was more than ready to see what we’re dealing with. I got chills.

THE LAST JEDI
Basically me.

I’m so hyped up I don’t know how I’m going to last until December… or actually, I do: obsessing over every tiny scrap of information we get.

For your reading pleasure, let’s break the trailer down:

Who is Snoke?

The trailer begins with the menacing voice of Snoke speaking against the backdrop of the First Order. We see Kylo Ren on a First Order ship, a land battle with new AT-AT look-alikes, and Ren walking along what looks like volcanic rock followed by menacing Stormtroopers. Snoke explains that Ren has “raw, untamed power… and beyond that, something truly special.” The general impression given is that Ren is returning more fully to his dark side tendencies and that we have Snoke to thank for this.

Ominous.

Ren had struggled during THE FORCE AWAKENS with pervasive thoughts of the light side. Looking at Ren’s new actions, he seems to have moved on from those. This could partially be because of the patricide he committed… but my bet is that Snoke is working on him. Snoke needs Ren’s “raw power.” What better way to keep him in line than to make him feel special? Ren shows a remarkable need for attention and approval. It’s unlikely Snoke got to be “Supreme Leader” without some people skills; it would be nothing for him to manipulate this powerful man-baby into doing his bidding.

But that begs the question — who the heck is Snoke?? We know remarkably little about him. There are, of course, infinite numbers of fan theories about this. Many favor the idea that Snoke is Darth Plagueis (the not-so-wise-after-all). When Sidious turns on him, Plagueis is able to use his power to return from the dead, but at a cost. If this is true, it would explain why he relies so heavily on Ren. We won’t know who Snoke is until at least December or quite possibly not until EPISODE IX. Until then, be assured that the Internet is hard at work speculating.

What’s Going On With Rey?

We know from the first THE LAST JEDI trailer that Luke seems to be unwilling to train Rey to be a Jedi. Well, we see here that that decision doesn’t seem to be the best. Rey is clearly something special. Her power stuns even Luke. When she manages to crack open the ground while meditating, I’m pretty sure my face looked just like his.

Also basically me.

Luke refers to Rey’s “raw strength” as the trailer cuts to Ren. The trailer is drawing clear parallels between the two that are, frankly, concerning. The two are clearly some of the most powerful Force-users the galaxy has ever seen. But that aside, why do we have to push them together? Ren is a bad guy. Whatever dithering he did in TFA seems to be in the past. So can we please keep Rey away from that?

Rey is a literal ray of light-side power. She represents the potential to save the galaxy. But she can’t do that if she takes Ren’s hand — don’t do it, Rey! IT’S A TRAP! I have to admit, I’m terrified to see what Rey chooses. The era of the Jedi is over. This could mean, simply, a new era of understanding the Force. The Gray Jedi are a suitable replacement. But I’m worried that Rey will stumble reaching this point.

There’s so much potential for her to do good… but there’s also the potential for her to fall in line with Ren. As Luke turns away from her, she’s more open than ever to the Dark Side. She needs guidance, yes, but she also needs a sense of belonging, which was clearly established in TFA. By turning his back on her, Luke is setting her up for failure.

Get it Together, Luke

Luke is actually both disappointing and fantastic in this trailer. On one (mechanical) hand, he’s a wash. The great Luke Skywalker, hero of the galaxy, is a wimp. He’s running from his past, hiding on an island in the middle of nowhere. He turns away from Rey because he’s scared. For a life-long Luke fan, this is so disappointing.

In the Legends books, Luke is a powerhouse in the galaxy. He starts the New Jedi Order. He plays a major part in galactic events. He’s the hero we knew he would be after ROTJ. This Luke Skywalker is not the same person. He’s given up. Rather than owning his mistakes, moving on, and fixing things, he has left the galaxy unguided. He put his own fears ahead of the good of the galaxy. He is, in some sense, completely to blame for the death of Han and the destruction of Hosnian Prime.

THE LAST JEDI
Look at her face, Luke. Think about what you’re doing.

But what makes Luke great is that this is a human response. It’s disappointing that Luke doesn’t respond as a dashing hero. But it is perhaps more realistic. Luke is afraid and with good reason. His mistakes with Ren led to countless deaths. He is wrong to turn away from Rey, and this mistake could cost even more lives. But it is easy to see his reasoning. Luke didn’t approach Ren carefully enough. He’s going to go in the complete opposite direction with Rey. He is too careful, too afraid of repeating the mistakes of the past that he doesn’t realize he’s making an entirely new mistake here.

All that being said, Luke really needs to get his act together. Come on, man. You’re my childhood hero. Don’t let me down.

Protect Leia AT ALL COSTS

Alright, we know something has to happen with Leia. Although the original plan was for her to be a major player through EPISODE IX, Carrie Fisher’s death changed all that. So we know, going into THE LAST JEDI, that something’s going to go down.

THE LAST JEDI
AT ALL COSTS.

But I swear, if Ren kills Leia, I will not be okay. Han will come back from the grave and Force-haunt his whiny behind. Watching Leia, who has been through so much, be faced with the prospect of her son murdering her, is almost too much. Almost. The ominous “kill it… if you have to” as we cut between Ren in his fighter and Leia on a Resistance ship, has me sweating over here. What’s going to happen to Leia? Will Ren kill her too?

This is another reason that Luke has to get himself together. If he allows Leia to die because of his frightful indecision, I’m done with him. He already has Han’s death on his conscience. Can you imagine Leia’s death too?

Stormbreaker

So one of the best aspects of this trailer (i.e., which doesn’t make me wanna rip my heart out) is Finn. More importantly, it’s Finn and Poe. Poe’s speech is super inspiring. Nothing is coincidence in STAR WARS. So the fact that we cut right to Finn after Poe describes “the spark that will light the fire that will burn the First Order” has got to be significant. I believe that Finn is that spark.

THE LAST JEDI

Tumblr agrees with me. Finn has been a subject of much speculation, but a popular theory is that Finn’s defection will wear down the First Order. He becomes a catalyst for further defections. When the Stormtroopers see what Finn has accomplished, it plants the seed of rebellion. I think — or at least I hope — that we will see some of that in this movie.

THE LAST JEDI
This might just be the coolest moment in the whole trailer.

We see Finn seemingly in First Order possession. Has Finn been captured? Or is this part of a larger plot? I think it’s entirely possible that we see Finn deliberately get captured. Once on board a First Order vessel who knows what he can accomplish? I’m on the edge of my seat on this one. I think Finn is going to do great things.

Little Things

There were some little things about the trailer that got me.

At the beginning, right when we see the Lucasfilm logo, we get a new piece of music. This piece begins the same as the Imperial March. But just when you’re prepared for the familiar theme, it breaks off into higher-pitched, faster string music. This is interesting, and I think refers to Ren. The Imperial March is Darth Vader. You hear that music and you see him, menacing figure of evil. Given Ren’s hero-worship (villain-worship?) of Vader in TFA, it makes sense to connect them musically.

But the fact that the music changes, I think, symbolizes that Ren is becoming more his own person in this film. The fact that he destroys his helmet also signifies his new independence. I also think that the fact that the music is higher-pitched and faster than the Imperial March is significant. It could show that Ren is still being drawn to the light. Or, it could signify that his arc is tenser than Vader’s. Whereas the Imperial March is slowly menacing, Ren’s new music is tense to a breaking point.

It’s SO cute (don’t @ me)

Secondly, I love the porg. Okay, I know a lot of people are unhappy with the porgs. They’re the new ewoks, we don’t need cutesy in STAR WARS, yadda yadda, but come on. This guy is super cute. And I’m interested to see what role the porgs play. Are they going to be improbably useful like the ewoks? Annoying like the Gungans? Set-pieces or actual characters? I’m waiting to see. And I’ll probably be buying porg merchandise, so they get what they wanted.

Final Thoughts

I have so many questions after watching this trailer. Why do the new AT-ATs look like they’re walking on the backs of their paws? Why is Artoo just watching the Jedi Academy burn? Is that a special dark-side bandage on Ren’s face? Is the lava planet Mustafar? Was that fox thing an ice-type Pokemon? Is Stormpilot going to be canon? How many boxes of tissues should I bring to theaters?

IS REY GOING TO TAKE REN’S HAND?

[screams interally]
We’ll just have to wait and see. You can bet I’ll be there at the very first showing I can manage.

Until then, I’ll be rewatching this trailer forever and scrolling through Tumblr for more fan theories.

THE LAST JEDI opens in theaters December 15, with some showings on December 14 at certain locations.

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