It's Star Wars month! And we've only got 2 weeks left to wait until [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158) is released. There are so many mysteries just waiting to be revealed, like the familial connection between the characters, and the secrets the villains are hiding. And of course, there's the question we want answered most of all: just where the heck is Luke Skywalker?
We haven't caught a glimpse of the original films' protagonist in any of the Star Wars 7 trailers yet, apart from that shot of his mechanical hand resting on R2-D2. Thanks to Luke's absence there are countless theories about how and why he's missing. The race is on to find Luke Skywalker, and as the international trailer reveals, it's not just the fans who are on the hunt...
With scenes of The First Order ransacking a town on Jakku, it certainly seems as though the villains of the movie are looking for Luke Skywalker too. So just why are Kylo Ren and The First Order on the hunt for Skywalker? Well, it might be because they believe he's evil...
Luke Skywalker: Defeater Of The Empire
In Entertainment Weekly's latest issue, John Boyega revealed something crucial about Luke Skywalker that we never expected: despite Luke's heroic actions, he's already considered a villain by a lot of the galaxy.
"For Finn, he’s been raised from the ashes of the Empire. He’s been taught about Luke Skywalker, he knows about his history. For him it’s like joining the army and then learning about one of the great enemies of your country. In terms of the Force, that is the point where Finn kind of questions what is what. What is the Force, what part does Luke Skywalker play in all of this?"
This is a pretty huge revelation. So it turns out that The First Order have been putting out some serious anti-Luke Skywalker propaganda, branding him a "villain who destroyed a benevolent Empire". This makes a lot of sense really, as propaganda is a huge part of war.
So how could The First Order possibly succeed in persuading the galaxy that the heroic Luke Skywalker is a villain? Well, there's one crucial fact that explains why this is so easy...
It's difficult to understand why such epic heroes as Han Solo, Leia Organa, and Luke Skywalker could be forgotten by the time Star Wars 7 roles around, but as Abrams explains, this is exactly what has happened, and why it's so easy for The First Order to brand Luke a villain...
"Doing a story that took place nearly 40 years after Jedi meant that there would be a generation for whom Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Leia would be as good as myth. They’d be as old and as mythic as the tale of King Arthur. They’d be characters who they might believe existed, or just sounded like a fairy tale."
For people like Rey, who grew up away from the Rebellion, the heroes that won the war have already sunk into a distant memory. This was strongly hinted at in the third trailer, in the scene between Han, Rey, and Finn.
This means that Luke hasn't been dramatically saving lives or fighting the good fight or basically, making himself known to the universe as a hero. Essentially, he's become reclusive, although the how and why of this is still a mystery. But if The First Order think he's a villain then this confirms one crucial thing...
Luke ISN'T Evil!
And he definitely isn't Kylo Ren. Having the characters, especially Finn, begin the story of The Force Awakens thinking that Luke is a villain, suggests that the plot will reveal that Luke is, as we all know, a hero. This makes it highly unlikely that Luke turned to the Dark Side years ago, as some fans have theorized, or that he's secretly working with the villains.
That's not to say that Luke Skywalker will be all sweetness and light in Star Wars 7. In fact, the little evidence we have suggests he'll be quite different than we remember.
JJ Abrams is definitely ready to challenge our perceptions of Luke Skywalker: as Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy revealed, this was exactly why Abrams accepted the job in the first place.
Kennedy persuaded him to helm Star Wars: The Force Awakens by asking a simple question, one with the potential to upend our core beliefs about the galaxy far, far away. "Who is Luke Skywalker?"
Abrams decided he needed to know the answer, even if he had to devise it himself. “He said, ‘Oh my God, I just got the chills. I’m in,’” Kennedy says. “I mean, it really was almost that quickly.”
So what kind of person will Luke have become in The Force Awakens? Will he be jaded and cynical, hiding himself from the galaxy, or a wise mentor for our new heroes? Only time will tell, but at least we don't have long to wait now!