A New Hope - Luke Skywalker

Luke Skywalker: “What is it?”

In Star Wars: A New Hope, set nearly 20 years after Revenge of the Sith, our main character Luke Skywalker isn’t very familiar with the Jedi at all. In the conversation Obi-Wan Kenobi has with the farmboy when giving him his father’s lightsaber, Luke has no idea what a lightsaber is when it’s handed to him, and even has to ask what The Force is. Kenobi even tells Luke that the Jedi are all but extinct.

Star Wars - A New Hope - Han Solo

Han Solo: “Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.”

And then there’s our favorite smuggler, Han Solo. He doesn’t believe in The Force and doesn’t seem to place any faith in the Jedi. He says lines like, “Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.” But Han makes it even more clear where he stands on the subject of The Force when he says:

“Kid, I’ve flown from one side of this galaxy to the other, and I’ve seen a lot of strange stuff, but I’ve never seen *anything* to make me believe that there’s one all-powerful Force controlling everything. ‘Cause no mystical energy field controls *my* destiny. It’s all a lot of simple tricks and nonsense.”

That’s part of what makes it so great for Han Solo to tell Finn (John Boyega) and Rey (Daisy Ridley) that the stories they’ve heard are real. “The Dark Side. The Jedi. It’s all real.” It’s like your cousin who told you that your parents were Santa Claus comes back years later, believing that the jolly fat guy is real.

Star Wars

Admiral Motti: “Don’t try to frighten us with your sorcerer’s ways, Lord Vader.”

Even working beside one of the Empire’s leaders who carries a lightsaber isn’t enough for some people. Let’s not forget how Admiral Motti disrespected Darth Vader when he said:

“Don’t try to frighten us with your sorcerer’s ways, Lord Vader. Your sad devotion to that ancient Jedi religion has not helped you conjure up the stolen data tapes, or given you enough clairvoyance to find the rebels’ hidden fortress…”

We all know how that exchange ended. Remember, that dissension is from someone who is a superior officer working for the organization responsible for eradicating the Jedi. It seems the Empire has done a pretty good job of making people forget about the Jedi, and this is a little over 30 years before we’ve even reached the timeline of The Force Awakens.

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Rebel Victories Don’t Mean Jedi Resurgence

Of course, this is all before Obi-Wan Kenobi encounters Darth Vader on the Death Star, which will later be blown up by Luke Skywalker. So surely people will know more about the Jedi after that? Well, considering how rare Jedi are and how isolated their work in the Rebellion was, it would stand to reason that very few people outside of the Rebel forces know who was responsible for destroying the Death Star, let alone the fact that he was learning about the ways of the Force from a veteran Jedi.

After all, despite the fact that the first Death Star was destroyed, that clearly hasn’t stopped the Empire from marching forward. Their continued dominance is the reason Episode IV is called The Empire Strikes Back, and it’s clear that other systems still crumble under threats from the Empire, as we see with Lando Calrissian’s dealing with them on Cloud City.

But even after Return of the Jedi, when the second Death Star has been destroyed, not to mention Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader being killed, that’s still not enough for the Jedi to make a comeback (despite what the title may indicate). Not even Luke Skywalker would be famous outside of his circle of friends and some rebels. Most of them probably don’t even know what happened on the Death Star between Luke, Vader and Palpatine. And the confusion over what seemed like the fall of the Empire is a big part of The Journey to The Force Awakens.

Continue Reading How Have Jedi Become Myth in ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’? >>

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