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‘The Force Awakens’ Aftermath – Top Five Questions Moving Forward

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The following article contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. You have been warned.

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Here are my five top questions after the fallout of the events surrounding the Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Star Wars: the Force Awakens

Is Rey, Luke’s Daughter?

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We know how Rey (Daisy Ridley) was left behind on Jakku as a little girl not knowing if the one(s) who left her behind would ever come back. She held on to hope into a significant part of the film. At the end of the movie, we see multiple shots of Luke (Mark Hamill) turning around and revealing himself to Rey as she hands him back his lightsaber. This is the same lightsaber that was lost at Cloud City in Empire Strikes Back, Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong’o) came into possession of the saber but did not reveal the acquisition.

While we already know of Kylo Ren’s lineage, Rey’s remains a mystery. One thing is for sure, the way she quickly picked up the Force and learned to master some abilities is far from a mere coincidence.

Star Wars: the Force Awakens

What Went Wrong with Ben/Kylo Ren?

We know that Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) is the son of Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). Ren was trained in the ways of the Force by Luke, but went astray after meeting with Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis), who’s attuned to the Dark Side. Ren developed an obsession with his grandfather, Darth Vader, the former Anakin Skywalker.

Did Luke tell him the truth about Vader? Did Ren kill all of Luke’s other pupils?

Whatever happened? Ben chose the Dark Side, killed the new Jedi, and Luke ran.

I don’t expect a long-winded exposition, but there’s almost no context to why he turned. All we know is the extent of his turning and that he’s conflicted in turning back to his humanity and the light side. His final exclamation point in the film is his final rejection of Han in a plea to his son to come home before impaling his father with his lightsaber, killing him at Starkiller Base.

Will Leia do more with her force abilities to avenge Han?

Star Wars: the Force Awakens

Did We See the Last of Harrison Ford in the Star Wars Universe?

While Star Wars was never into delving into flashbacks, one wonders if Ford’s renewed vigor promoting a franchise he didn’t always love had to do with this swan song. This isn’t the first time Ford had thoughts about leaving the franchise he helped make famous. During The Empire Strikes Back, Solo’s end scene with his carbonite freezing was a potential way to write-off the character should Ford decide not to come back for Return of the Jedi. He ultimately decided to return and participate in the final original trilogy film after creator George Lucas convinced him.

While there are opportunities to explain further Ben’s story in the next film, there’s also another opportunity with the upcoming young Han Solo film Lucasfilm plans to make for Ford should he decide to make some cameo.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Posters

How Did the First Order Come to Be?

Perhaps it will be answered in a Star Wars novel, but we know only one First Order character who’s come to worship a predecessor which is Ren. In the films, we never actually know the Sith in detail outside of what Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) revealed in the movies. Assuming there was a power vacuum with the emperor’s death, we are not sure if Snoke had any ties to the former dark lord of the Sith.

We know he’s capable of training in ways of the Dark Side since he seductively has Ben’s ear and his will twisted Luke’s former apprentice to his current resolve despite Ren’s emotional breakdowns when the First Order gets one-upped by the resistance.

My one major complaint with The Force Awakens is while director J.J. Abrams and his fellow writers Lawrence Kasdan and Michel Arndt developed the protagonists well, there was a lot left on the table about the First Order.

Also, who survived the Starkiller Base explosion?

SWTFA_Luke_R2D2

What has Luke been up to for the past 30 years?

We know after the Galactic Empire fell following the events of ROTJ, Luke wanted to build a new generation of Jedi and that fell through. Luke fled after Ben defected to the Dark Side and joined the First Order as Snoke’s right hand. We also know the former princess of Alderaan, now General Leia helped form the Resistance from the Rebel Alliance. A new Republic was established who aligned themselves with the Resistance as the First Order was looking to regroup from the remnants of the Empire.

The explanation is that whatever was done to drive away Ben from his family and uncle; Leia, Han, and Luke all went their separate ways as a means to cope.

The explanation Han provided that Luke was trying to find the first Jedi temple probably isn’t the main reason he fled, and we’ll likely find out in the next film.

I’m hoping Rian Johnson and whomever else he brings to help write Episode VIII can help fill in a significant chunk those gaps.

Have a question or loose ends you want answered about in the film, respond in the comments below.

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Tom Chang
Sci-fi and technology geek since the NES days, Tom loves everything from the cult classics, the contemporary hits to the beast with two backs that is Disney and Marvel. His life's mission is to be the ultimate nerd savant sitting on the iron throne as CEO of Skynet while masquerading as a vigilante at night wearing hockey pads.