No doubt about it, STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS left us viewers with a ton of questions. Who are Rey’s parents? What has Luke been up to for the past twenty years? Who is Supreme Leader Snoke, and what is his connection to the Jedi and Sith? J.J. Abrams wonderfully gave us enough STAR WARS to whet our appetites, all while playing his trademark mystery box trope like he’s never played it before.
We have a good year and a half before STAR WARS EPISODE VIII, the next chapter in the main saga, hits theaters, and until then, there are sure to be leaks, rumors, straight-up lies, and fast ones pulled by Disney and Lucasfilm. So far, we’ve gotten little bits of pieces of info regarding the next film, but let’s be real, we know as much about this film as we did about THE FORCE AWAKENS a couple years back. The whole cloak-and-dagger approach worked fairly well for the studio in the past, so why not continue it for the next film?
Given that approach, it’s inevitable that someone would come forth with what they claim is a full set of leaks, and that’s what we’re here to talk about today.
A little over a week ago, someone under the handle u/LouEvilOne on the StarWarsLeaks subreddit released a couple dozen bullets of supposed leaks from EPISODE VIII.
We here at LRM are by no means claiming these to be authentic (based on some of the bullets, I’m imagining it's all B.S.), but think they’re an incredibly entertaining read, and worth discussing.
Needless to say, if you wish to go into STAR WARS EPISODE VIII completely unspoiled, I recommend you don’t read ahead. Again, the leaks can be bogus, but there’s always a chance of — as slim as they are — that they’re true.
SPOILER ALERT FOR STAR WARS EPISODE VIII
Now that you’ve actively made the choice to read on, let’s talk potential STAR WARS EPISODE VIII spoilers! We’ll be making our way down the entire bullet list starting from the top.
The first “leak” from the post is in regards to the working title of the film, which is supposedly ECHOES OF THE DARK SIDE. Not a bad name. In all honesty, when it comes to naming, the STAR WARS franchise doesn’t necessarily have the best track record, as they’re very much in the vein of old, pulpy adventure tales. This one seems to carry on that tradition, and given the rumors that Snoke is actually not a Sith, it seems like it can be pretty fitting.
The next three bullet points are all related to the structure of the plot. There will be three main plot threads we will be following in ECHOES OF THE DARK SIDE: Rey’s, Finn’s, and Kylo’s. These threads will all parallel each other and converge in the third act of the film.
One of the main complaints/comments in regards to THE FORCE AWAKENS had to do with how much it paralleled the structure in A NEW HOPE. While it was clearly a deliberate move by Abrams, some fans couldn’t shake the thought that it was lazy storytelling. For those of you who fall into that category, you may be a bit disappointed in EPISODE VIII, as the trend of parallels will continue.
“The broad structure isn't as similar to ESB as TFA was to ANH, but the parallels are still present. Rey is training in the ways of the Force with an old Jedi master (Luke) on a wild planet while Finn and Poe are in a beautiful city that has a shady, sinister underpinning. Finn and Poe are betrayed and captured by Kylo Ren who uses them as bait to draw Rey out of hiding so Kylo and Rey can have a duel in an industrial portion of the city.”
While the post seems to think this isn’t as direct of a parallel as TFA was to ANH, in a way, this seems to be more of a parallel, and honestly, it's the first red flag of the post. While it’s understandable that TFA would mimic the structure of ANH, this is just flat-out lazy — so lazy that it can’t be true. Literally, this appears to be completely made up by some fan in an attempt to rile others up, and in my mind, this post loses all credibility at this point.
Moving on, the post outlines the back story we were teased in TFA regarding Rey’s parentage, Snoke’s role in Kylo’s betrayal, and what happened to all the Jedi. According to the post, Snoke seduced Kylo, and had him kill all the Jedi-in-training. Luke and a few others survive, including Rey. To protect her, Luke sends her to Jakku, and unfortunately, Rey’s mom dies in that attack.
Now, if you thought some of the other stuff was crazy, here’s where it goes way off the deep end. Rey guesses that Luke is her father, but Luke goes on to say, “No, you are my father.”
And, I lost half of you there, and rightfully so.
This is terrible. But here’s the supposed explanation:
“Rey is the reincarnation of Anakin Skywalker. Luke went to the first Jedi temple to better understand how the process works. He learned that the spirit of the chosen one is reincarnated by the Force every time the universe is thrown out of balance, which apparently happens on a semi-regular basis (Anakin was hardly the first time the chosen one reincarnated). This is why she's so crazy powerful with the Force (remember that Anakin blew up the Trade Federation donut ship by himself when he was like 8 years old).
Rey was the product of a virgin birth, but midichlorians aren't mentioned (Luke says "you are a child of the Force”).
Luke is hesitant to train her because, according to Jedi history, the chosen one always struggles with staying on the light side of the Force because of the chaotic power running through them. He's afraid that she could become Vader 2.0. If he trains her to fight Kylo, and she turns dark, she would do way more damage to the galaxy than Kylo could ever dream of doing.”
The post even makes mention that Luke talks to the Force ghosts of both Obi-Wan and Yoda, both who are to be played once again by Ewan McGregor and Frank Oz, respectively.
The next batch of info is all straight-up plot details, so there’s little reason for me to paraphrase.
Check it out below.
“Rey learns lightsaber skills, Force skills, and has a vision quest thing where she talks with Maz Kanata (unsure if it’s telepathy or just a dream) and Hayden Christensen. The latter tells her that she is him, but different, and there’s a quick scene where we see hundreds of other Force ghosts who are implied to be past chosen ones.
Rey feels Finn's distress elsewhere in the galaxy and says she needs to go to him. Luke tells her about the time he felt his friends in distress and Yoda told him to stay and finish his training, and his disobedience led to pain. But then he says he isn't Yoda, and has his own way of doing things, and tags along with her to go help.
Finn wakes up on a Resistance cruiser and is told by Poe that they're already en route to the makeshift Republic homeworld in the wake of the capital planet being blown up by Starkiller Base.
Leia wants to lobby them to go to war.
The Republic is being led by an interim dictator named Lord Vikram (Benicio Del Toro), who was quickly put into power by the few senators still around to maintain order.
Starkiller's destruction of the Republic core worlds caused a galactic communications disruption because everything was routed through those worlds, so Vikram is trying to reestablish contact and ensure the Republic doesn't collapse into anarchy.
Leia and Vikram butt heads. Vikram agrees that the Republic has to go to war with the First Order, but wants to wait for communications to come back online so they can muster up a sizable force (all they have right now is a single small fleet). Leia disagrees, and wants to take the war to the First Order now while Snoke is still reeling from Starkiller's destruction. She says both sides are in chaos, which makes this an opportune time to strike. Vikram counters by telling her she's letting her personal emotions over Han's death get in the way, and Leia throws it back at him by telling him he was always a little snake of a politician when they would argue back in her senate days, etc, etc, they have old bad blood or whatever.
The Republic planet is safe because it's protected by a heavy duty shield that can repel any invasion or bombardment from the First Order.
Finn and Poe are tasked by Leia to investigate the city because one of Leia's contacts informed her that the First Order have spies embedded in the Republic. Leia suspects Vikram.
Finn quickly becomes enamored by Leia's contact, Chala (Kelly Marie Tran), who tags along with him and Poe through the underbelly of the city to gather information.
Finn and Chala have a flirty romance subplot that involves a nighttime adventure through the rustic old city (this is the second entry in the trilogy after all, and poetry demands it).
Finn, Poe and Chala all corner the culprit: Vikram's aide, who has evidence of contact between Vikram and the First Order. Leia and some Resistance fighters confront Vikram and throw him in jail for treason. He denies everything, and the rest of the Republic officials are horrified because Leia basically just coup-de-etat'd the **** out of their leadership. Leia assumes control of the planet's defenses and absentmindedly puts Finn in charge of the shield codes.
Finn and Chala have a moment and Finn mentions his confusion about why Vikram didn't just lower the shields for the First Order. They walk into a room and Phasma is standing there and Chala draws a gun on Finn and forcibly takes the codes for disarming the shield from him. She says she planted the evidence, used Finn to get the codes, and basically that she thinks he's a dirty traitor to the First Order. In a moment of pure pottery, Phasma makes Finn lower the shields.
The First Order fleet jumps out of hyperspace and invades the planet, quickly capturing Finn, Poe and Leia. Kylo starts to torture Finn using the Force, knowing that it will draw Rey out of hiding and into his trap.”
That’s the end of the post there. It looks like the conclusion of the third act isn’t really on there yet, but this pretty much concludes the details.
While I’m pretty sure this is an elaborate fake, it was still an interesting read. But what do you think?
Let us know your comments down below!
STAR WARS EPISODE VIII hits theaters on December 16, 2017.
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