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– by Nick Doll

The trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi dropped earlier today and boy is it fantastic! Picking up nearly immediately after Star Wars: The Force Awakens ended, this is the type of trailer that literally gives me chills. After all, it’s Star Wars, baby!

As is Star Wars tradition, this first teaser trailer really is a tease, unlike some other Studios’ trailers.  It gives up no real plot details past what we already knew, but still offers some pretty tantalizing visuals and reveals. Of course, it is also far less mysterious than The Force Awakens teaser trailer, as this go around we know most the characters and even a few of the planets featured.

Let’s break down this gold mine, scene for scene.

Force vision?

It looks like Rey is having the same “Force” reaction she had when she first touched Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber in The Force Awakens. Like a “Force Anxiety Attack.” Based on the garb and locale, this seems to take place pretty quick after the ending of the last film, perhaps as she hands the saber to Luke? Or is this Force pain related to part of her training? Either way, expect more quick flashbacks to the events between The Last Jedi and Force Awakens as a result of Rey’s power.

“Breathe, just breathe” 

We see the islands from The Force Awakens on Ahch-To, home of the first Jedi Temple. Again, this is where the last film ended and where Luke Skywalker has been hiding since his Jedi Academy went south when Kylo Ren turned to the dark side.

Luke’s calming voice tries to settle the shaken Rey, as we see beautiful shots of the island. We get further looks at Rey’s training as she stands overlooking a waterfall, while her incredible power, which may still be out of control, causes some pebbles to float. Floating rocks during a Jedi training session? This feels a little familiar.    

“Now reach out. What do you see?”

Well, we see a shot from behind a Resistence General of some sort, either Princess Leia or perhaps the new character played by Laura Dern.

“Light… Darkness”

As Rey narrated the light of the Resistance leader, “darkness” covers what looks to be the smashed helmet of Lord Vader, Kylo Ren’s grandfather. Though the mask looks a bit like Kylo Ren’s helmet to me, the classic deep breathing suggests it is indeed Vader’s. This time, little Ren has really lost his temper, even more so than in Force Awakens. Or, perhaps he finally feels he no longer needs to live in the shadow of his grandfather… he’s a master now. No more seeking power from an old relic.

“The Balance”

A mysterious locale with a ray of light, contrasting the previous shot of Vader’s helmet. Again, this is likely Ahco-To, maybe some kind of interior shot of the temple itself? The light pours upon an ancient text with the symbol of the Jedi. Is this what Kylo Ren and Snoke are really after? In addition to wanting to kill Luke, of course. Is this the key to “the balance” that Rey’s voice-over mentions? What secrets does it hold?

“It’s so much bigger.”

Lots of exteriors of Ahch-To, so maybe there really isn’t much of a temple left. We get to see Rey try out her lightsaber skills, with what must be Luke’s lightsaber, as he looks on. Does Luke’s quote refer to there being more than the dark, the light, and balance? As you will see down the line, this is certainly not the same hopeful Luke we know and love from Return of the Jedi.

Battle of Hoth, Part II?

Shots of new ships flying close to the ground akin to the low flying X-Wings that grazed the lake in The Force Awakens. They expel some sort of red gas as they fly towards what looks like the new versions of the AT-AT. This is all very close to the rumored description of a battle sequence that we wrote about last week.

Finn in a pod.

Is this a more advanced Bacta Tank without all that icky liquid? Either Finn is in cryosleep (but they don’t do that in Star Wars, right?) or he is healing up from the horrifying wound given to him by Kylo Ren in The Force Awakens. The trailer looks to be mostly footage from early-ish in the film, so hopefully we will see Finn up and running in the second trailer.

Poe and BB-8

Poe and BB-8 are reunited and it feels so good! Though BB-8 spent his time with Rey and Finn in The Force Awakens, it looks like he’s back with his old buddy Poe; the R2-D2 to his Luke Skywalker. BB-8 was a fan favorite, so expect a lot of him, which also means expect a lot of Poe! That would be a delight.

As they run down the hallways of what is clearly a rebel base, complete with Poe’s X-Wing, the rebels seem to be under attack once again! And Poe losses his second X-Wing in two movies! Is this the new AT-AT model attacking? Are we really getting something that similar to The Empire Strikes back? One of The Force Awaken‘s faults was it was a little too familiar at points, a little too much like A New Hope. If this film borrows too much from Empire — Jedi training sequences, AT-AT fights — that could actually be an issue and not a blessing.  

The Millennium Falcon

Everyone’s favorite ship is back as well! Rey, Chewbacca, and R2 had it last on Ahch-To, so was Rey dropped off with Luke or is she the pilot in this scene? I would guess the latter, as it was made clear in Force Awakens that you really need a co-pilot to tame this beast, so Rey is likely piloting with Chewbacca by her side. Did she see a vision and rush to help her friends? (Again… Empire did it!)

Rey and Kylo Ren

The return of Kylo Ren as the pair seem to be ready for a lightsaber battle. Ren has his lightsaber too close to his face to see any of the scars left by Rey, but it is notable that he is no longer wearing his mask. Surely the one he dropped never made it off of the Starkiller Base, but wouldn’t he have extras? Does he take it off for battle? Or does Kylo Ren have the confidence and power to no longer need it as his identity?

Force Awakens Flashback Continued?

We see a robed figure next to R2-D2, watching the world burn. This looks to be a continuation of Rey’s vision from The Force Awakens; the destruction of Luke’s Jedi Academy. Unlike the last vision, the attackers include a black stormtrooper, not the Knights of Ren.

Large Scale Space Battle!

With all the X-Wings and Tie Fighters within the atmosphere in Force Awakens, the battles in actual space were limited. This time we see a large scale space battle akin to the end of Jedi and Rogue One. I’ve felt this element is something that has been missing from the trilogy films since Jedi. Rejoice as ships old and new destroy each other on a larger scale than ever before! In space!

“I only know one truth. It’s time for the Jedi to end.”

The Last Jedi?” Now I get it! maybe. 

Luke wants the Jedi to end? This line opens up more speculation than any other moment in the trailer. Is the the pain of losing Kylo Ren and his Jedi Academy the reason for this? When Luke said things are “so much bigger” than the light, the dark, and a balance, is he somewhere in between the three now, neither good, evil, nor balanced? Does he lean dark and want to end the Jedi in a Sith fashion? If you look at the poster, Luke is on the opposite side of the saber than Ren, but both are glowing in the traditional Sith lightsaber red, even as Rey holds the blue saber of a Jedi below them. A blue lightsaber that becomes red at the tip. Hmmmm… maybe someone is turning to the dark side, but it’s not neccesarily Luke.

Why train a new Jedi in Rey if the Jedi must end? Is Luke training her to destroy Ren and any other Jedi wannabes? Was Luke turning on the Jedi what sent the conflicted Ren to Snoke in the first place, to finish his training and keep the force alive? There are many questions following this trailer, and we won’t get an answer to most until December!

What did you get out of the trailer for The Last Jedi that I missed? Do you have alternate takes on some of the scenes examined above? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below! 

Star Wars: The Last Jedi will be released December 15, 2017

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