So now we know. Star Wars Episode VIII finally has a name; The Last Jedi. It's an ominous title, one filled with foreboding, promising a film centered upon Luke Skywalker and Rey. We don't yet know whether or not the title refers to Jedi in the singular or the plural, but there's one thing that's really caught the eyes of Star Wars fans. The title is red.
Maybe It's Not a Big Deal?
Before we read too much into this, it's worth noting that the 'Star Wars' logo has gone red before now. The original title sequence for Return of the Jedi was red — and that's the story of the Empire's end! Meanwhile, George Lucas's Clone Wars series was red for a couple of episodes too.
Let's face it, though, Lucasfilm know all too well what fan reactions would be to the red #StarWars logo! This is a marketing strategy, with the red font intended to communicate a message about the film. In Star Wars, the color red is associated with only one thing:
THE DARK SIDE.
What Can We Expect?
The Force Awakens closely mirrored A New Hope, so many fans were already expecting the sequel to have similarities to The Empire Strikes Back. As any Star Wars fan will know, The Empire Strikes Back is easily the darkest of the classic Original Trilogy — it features the revelation that Darth Vader was Luke's father, and closed with Han Solo imprisoned in carbonite. If Last of the Jedi follows the same pattern, then this should mark the darkest chapter of the new trilogy.
We know that Luke Skywalker was referred to as the 'Last of the Jedi' in the opening scrawl of The Force Awakens, so we can safely assume that he's the titular character. But how did Luke become the 'Last of the Jedi'? Even a year and a half after The Force Awakens, that remains a mystery; the tie-in novels and comics have deliberately avoided that story, presumably leaving it for The Last Jedi. With persistent rumors that the film will feature a lot of flashbacks, it's very likely we'll see the rise of the First Order and the destruction of Luke's renewed Jedi Order.
That alone will justify a darker style and tone for the film, and may well hint at a reason for the red font. But it's not enough; the red has to refer to the present, not to the past. The Force Awakens ended with Kylo Ren going to train with Snoke; it's entirely possible that we'll see Kylo Ren training even as Rey does the same. If that's the case, we can expect the flashbacks to be tied to training montages, and we may well see Kylo Ren's fall to the dark side. Just as Revenge of the Sith included Anakin Skywalker's slaughter of the Younglings, so we may well get a glimpse of Kylo Ren's massacre of the Jedi.
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That red font is seriously foreboding, and it's set the Internet buzzing with tension. After the death of Han Solo in The Force Awakens, and with the tragic passing of Carrie Fisher, Star Wars fans have become something of a nervous breed. There's no way that red font has calmed any nerves!
Are you excited for 'Last of the Jedi'?
(Poll Image Credit: Lucasfilm)