Shattered Empire tree

Does Growing Up Around a Force Tree Make Poe Dameron a Force Sensitive?

But what does this tree that is “one with the Force” mean for Star Wars: The Force Awakens? As for the purpose for the tree in the story, writer Greg Rucka mentions in a Twitter reply that he “wanted Luke to pursue something besides ‘just another holocron’ ;).” While it makes sense that they need a new and different MacGuffin to base this comic book miniseries around, many fans are wondering what role the trees will have in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the future of the Star Wars universe.

Does the fact that Poe Dameron grew up playing in a yard with a Force tree mean anything? Could Poe possibly have Force sensitivity due to his upbringing around the Force tree? Marvel editor Jordan D. White is very active online answering fan questions. Here he answers this question:

Jordan’s non answer is interesting, but doesn’t confirm anything. The idea that Poe grew up in the shadow of a tree saved from the Jedi temple seems to suggest destiny will still serve a big role in the future of the Star Wars universe.

Is the tree just a poetic metaphor to represent the new beginnings for the Dameron family, or is it a set-up for future stories in the Star Wars universe? This being a prequel of sorts for The Force Awakens, you would think that (literally) planting the seeds of an interesting artifact such as this Force tree would surely be a setup for what comes in the upcoming film.

I tried asking editor Jordan D. White over the weekend about the tree, and despite normally answering all comers, he avoided my question. Today I decided to rephrase the question and ask again, hoping he might clarify the tree’s possible importance to the overarching story. He responded with the following:

Again, a non-answer. You would think if the tree was only meant to be a MacGuffin for this story that would end the miniseries as a symbolic metaphor, that Jordan might just deny the implication that is a set-up, but he didn’t.

the clone wars tree shattered empire

Concept art for The Jedi Temple from Star Wars: The Clone Wars

The Trees’ Backstory: The Clone Wars

Writer Greg Rucka has confirmed that the tree is a callback to The Clone Wars. Editor Jordan D. White says he thinks the idea to include the Jedi Temple tree originated from Greg Rucka:

Remember we mentioned the Force nexus of the Jedi Temple a bit earlier? The tree was seen outside the Jedi Temple in the twentieth and final episode of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars series which was titled “The Wrong Jedi” (part of the closing Yoda arc). The “ancient gnarled tree with golden boughs” was seen in the background of a sequence which involved a duel between Anakin Skywalker and Barriss Offee, which interrupted a training session of Jedi younglings conducted by Tera Sinube at the training ground near the base of the Temple’s central spire.

Located on Coruscant, The Jedi Temple (or the Palace of the Jedi) was the headquarters and training facility of the Jedi Order from the Great Sith War to its abandonment during the Great Jedi Purge, after which it was retrofitted into the Imperial Palace. The temple first appeared in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace but was since added to Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi during home video rereleases.

Unfortunately, that particular tree’s presence in Star Wars canon thus far doesn’t give us any clues as to its powers or future in the franchise.

Some other things to think about:

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The Kylo Ren Torture Scene

In the latest trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, we see Kylo Ren torturing Poe Dameron, right before we cut to a shot of a forest being destroyed. It’s unclear if this shot of the forest destruction is from a sequence in the film, or if it is imagery that Dameron is experiencing due to the mind torture (which is something we’ve seen as recently as in Star Wars Rebels). Could there be a connection here between the tree, Poe’s home world of Yavin 4 and this clip from the latest trailer? Remember, the comic book storyline had the Emperor testing the trees in a top secret lab. There is clearly something to gain from their power. Is it possible that Kylo Ren is torturing Dameron to find this tree for his own purposes? We are not sure.

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“The Dark Side, the Jedi, They’re Real”

Another thing to notice in the new Force Awakens trailer is the clever placement of Harrison Ford’s Han Solo voiceover line of “the Dark Side, the Jedi, they’re real.” I’ve noted when the trailer was released that it seemed like a clever move to have Han Solo say “the Jedi” as the trailer cut to a clip of John Boyega as Finn. The marketing seems focused on Finn with a lightsaber, which to me seems like a way to hide the fact that the story might really be about Rey being the new Jedi (and possibly a Skywalker) of this new trilogy. But the clip under “the Jedi” voice over also features Poe Dameron, which could mean something, or possibly nothing at all.

To be fair, of all the rumors we have heard surrounding The Force Awakens, I don’t think I’ve ever once heard the possibility of Poe Dameron being a Jedi or Force Sensitive.

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