Since the first teaser for Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens came out in December, fans have been raging (and praising) the new lightsaber design sported by the new Sith in town, Kylo Ren.
So far, Director J.J. Abrams (and now executive producer for the rest of the trilogy) has been pretty quiet about it, which is normally what you want to do when people rant about something they haven't really seen in action yet.
Fans have claimed that the Crossguard lightsaber is seemingly impractical, and would harm anyone trying to use it. And moderate critics have at least mentioned that the new design doesn't appear to add anything useful to the original design of the lightsaber.
Not like how the double-bladed lightsaber was a clear symbol of power and flexibility for Darth Maul in The Phantom Menace.
Well, Abrams surprisingly broke his silence last night during an impromptu interview with Collider.
Here's what he said:
“...since the lightsaber’s come out, I cannot tell you how many contradictory emails I have received from people who have both defended it with unbelievably detailed graphics…I’ve gotten things that are nuts, and I’ve gotten people who’ve shown how it’ll kill you and how it doesn’t make any sense. It’s been the funniest thing to see the arguments that have developed over this thing.”
Abrams wouldn't get into specifics, but he did mention that the pathway to settling on this lightsaber design for [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](movie:711158) is a "long story" (and I'm guessing an interesting one).
He also mentioned that its origins and how they came up with it would be explained later.
And of course, Abrams said that the team had the same discussions about how "useful" and practical the design was for Star Wars 7, so I suppose that's good enough for some fans (for now).
“It was a number of conversations [that led to the design]. It was a sketch that became a whole thing and, you know, this was not done without a lot of conversation and it’s fun to see people have the conversation that we had, but in reverse.”
I'm still itching more info — because I'm obsessed with lightsabers — but it's nice to know they're at least claiming to put thought in behind it. In fact, I think the most likely explanation for the design is that it's more symbolic than anything else, hence the "long story" involved with how it came to be.
A Sith Inquisitor needs to stand out after all, and what's more intimidating than an overpowered lightsaber with beams coming out the sides? I'd say that's as good an explanation as any, especially for why Jedi wouldn't bother applying the design to the blue and green tints.
What do you think?
Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens is set to release December 18, 2015.
Do YOU like the Cross-guard design?