Star Wars: The Force Awakens – 7 Things That Keep Me Awake

Is it 1998? ‘Cause I sure as hell feel the same excitement as I did 16 years ago when I first laid eyes on the trailer for The Phantom Menace.

While this teaser is nowhere near as packed as its sister-Disney franchise’s Avengers 2 trailer, it does give us a few things to ponder till the next trailer hits.

Related: “Avengers: Age of Ultron” Trailer

I) The Phantom Narrator

“There’s been an Awakening.”

So who is this mystery narrator? While everyone seems to have their own theory from Harrison Ford (c’mon, it doesn’t sound anything like him) to Benedict Cumberbatch (is he even in this movie?), it has been confirmed to actually be Andy Serkis… turns out we’ll be seeing old Gollum more than once next year.

Nevertheless, we still do not know exactly who he is. While the obviously popular opinion points towards him being the lone Sith we later see, I’d keep in mind that Serkis is ultimately a master of motion capture acting. Perhaps he may actually be a new Yoda-type master?

That being said, nothing’s to say that the Sith isn’t a mo-cap character himself (though I would rather he not be).

II) Attack of the Not-Clones

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Before the release of Attack of the Clones in 2002, it was pretty much assumed that the Imperial Stormtroopers seen in the Original Trilogy were either men who had signed on or were conscripted into the Empire’s forces.

While this was never confirmed nor refuted in the movies, the Expanded Universe (stories that could be considered canonical but were published outside of the movies) later suggested that the Original Trilogy’s Stormtroopers, like the Prequel Trilogy’s Clonetroopers, were the clones of Jango Fett created on Kamino. Other tales insinuated that, while not all the troopers were clones of Jango, it’s possible that most of them were clones of some of the better soldiers.

With John Boyega’s appearance in Trooper armour, it’s possible that the era of clones may have ended with the waning days of the Republic. However, there has been a good 30 years since the events of Return of the Jedi and the status of the Imperial forces may have changed. After all, given the ending of the Original Trilogy, who’s to say that the troopers aren’t actually the New Republic’s foot soldiers now?

Personally, I’d be glad if they got rid of the cloned-Stormtroopers origin. It would be impossible to explain how clones of one of the greatest bounty hunters in the galaxy could suck so much at hitting their target.

Also, there still isn’t enough proof to declare that Boyega’s character is indeed a trooper. After all, it’s not like we haven’t seen good guys dressed as troopers before.
Han & Luke as Stormtroopers

III) Revenge of the Universe

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One of the more unique aspects of the original Star Wars when it hit the screens back in ’77, was Lucas’ vision for a “used future.” Simply put, he wanted it to look like the galaxy actually had people living in it and, so, not everything could look super sleek and shiny. This was successfully done with dull greys and matte tones being used instead of the silver and gloss that had become the norm of sci-fi.

With the Prequel Trilogy, however, this was thrown out of the window and, in a rather meta-textual coincidence, the CGI-ridden new movies were filled with the same sleek and shiny aspects that the original movies had sought to avoid.

While many would accuse this of simply being another sign of substance being neglected for the sake of style, the difference in style allowed the audience to see the toll that the Empire had on the galaxy since coming into power. With their resources being spent on weapons like the Death Star, the rest of the galaxy began stagnating, leading to the used future look as seen in the Original Trilogy.

With The Force Awakens however, we see that the old look of the galaxy is back, bringing with it a lot of questions: did the Rebels actually win by blowing up the second Death Star during the Battle of Endor? If they did, has anything improved since or has the Rebellion failed the galaxy? Maybe on the political end of things, we may begin to see, that despite all their tyranny, the Empire were no less effective that any other form of government.

IV) A New Skywalker?

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For a pretty high profile movie, we really know nothing about casting other than whom Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher will be playing. This would be pretty exciting… if it wasn’t 37 year old news…

However, of all the casting news so far, the most interesting one to me is actually Daisy Ridley. For anyone who knows their Star Wars history (not that that’s something I secretly study or anything…), there was a point of time where the scripts actually had a female protagonist for the Original Trilogy. While this character eventually evolved into the Luke and Leia that we all know and love today, it’s always been intriguing to consider the possibility of a Leia-driven trilogy (which was apparently what the sequel trilogy was supposed to be back in the ’80s) .

With The Force Awakens though, it’s possible that we may finally have a Star Wars movie with a female protagonist. And more interestingly, she may actually be a Skywalker. I mean, piloting a vehicle in a place that looks like Tatooine?

Okay, so maybe it’s a bit of stretch, but all Star Wars movies require a Skywalker… except The Phantom Menace. That could really have used less Skywalker.

V) The Rebellion Strikes Back

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Thanks to the aforementioned Expanded Universe, most fans have long assumed that the Empire was overthrown and the Rebellion had replaced it, possibly reinstating the Republic along the way. Thing is, until we see that in the mandatory opening crawl of the next movie, that’s no longer canon.

With this trailer however, it’s quite clear that both the Empire and the Rebellion still exist in one way or another. Is it possible that we may be looking at another trilogy of the Rebellion versus the Empire?

VI) Return of the Sith

VI
Whoa! That lightsaber! … with mini-hilt guard lightsabers, too. Really not too sure what’s happening here, but I’m just stoked to see this guy in action.

On to more important topics, don’t you just love it when everyone starts questioning the realism of a weapon that has been pretty impossible since first introduced anyways? Sure, technology has improved in leaps and bound but keep in mind that the blade of a lightsaber is essentially weightless and that makes the way the Jedi and Sith fight, straight up impossible.

Wanna know how it works? The Force.

Oh, and by the way, I totally think that Mr Cloaked-and-Mysterious there is Luke Skywalker. #justsaying

VII) The Questions Awaken

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The most important one being, when exactly did the Force go to sleep?

Just to be clear for people who haven’t already gotten it. Anakin did bring balance to the Force by the end of the Prequel Trilogy. If you don’t wanna do the math yourself, we’ve done it for you: there were only two Sith at the start of the Prequel Trilogy, and there were only two Jedi by the end of it. (This is, of course, ignoring the now-out-of-continuity Expanded Universe.)

At the end of the Original Trilogy however, not only were the Sith done for but the Jedi still existed by way of Luke. While the Force couldn’t theoretically simply disappear, it could have become somewhat “dormant” due to the sheer lack of Jedi, Sith, and everything in-between.

No doubt the speculations are gonna keep coming for the next year until the movie comes out, so be sure to join in on the discussion!

Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be out on December 18th 2015.

Expect the Family Guy parody to follow soon after.

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