It’s been a long time since a Star Wars film of merit was released in the theaters but in about six hours, the world will be treated to the newest chapter of the sage, picking up where Return of the Jedi left off — well, picking up about 30 years into the future. But what does the future hold for this franchise?
Star Wars: The Force Awakens has been teased, hinted, and promoted like few films in recent history but I’m completely fine with that. Why? Because I saw the original films in theaters all those years ago and, combined with my recent San Diego Comic Con: Secret Star Wars Concert, I’ve always felt connected to the franchise. So connected, in fact, I refuse to admit the three more recent films including Jar Jar Binks and that disaster actually exist. It’s like some dark and chaotic part of a twisted dream which dissipates with the morning sun. But I digress.
The Force Awakens has some interested hinted plots and social media has been buzzing with numerous theories. I’ve tried to stay clear of the chaff but as a pop culture consumer, it tends to run through my observed-life sphere. During that time, I’ve noticed something which I’ve been unable to explain. At Comic Con, the entire cast was revealed, including Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, and Harrison Ford. In the subsequent promotional content (videos, posters, etc.), I’ve seen every major character portrayed but have yet to see Mark Hamill in anything.
Notice we see everyone else from the legacy cast in this image including Han Solo, Princess now General Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, Chewy, but no Luke Skywalker. But why is Kylo Ren featured so predominantly upon the poster? Sure, he’s the primary antagonist in the film but, again, I’m left searching for some hint of Luke. In the trailer, we see someone reaching out and touching R2-D2 clearly with a droid hand. Likely Luke but Luke as… Kylo Ren? But Rip, Adam Driver is playing Kylo Ren. Haven’t you seen IMDB?! Sure, he’s listed as the actor portraying Kylo but what if… and this is a big if… what if JJ Abrams, the guy who secretly put together a concert for the San Diego Comic Con fans, actually paid Adam to portray Kylo in media events but it was all a ruse. In actual fact, Mark Hamill is Kylo Ren… and 30 years on, the dark side of the force is fully entrenched in our historical dark-fighting good guy. Imagine the shocked noise from that reveal.
There is no doubt Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens is probably one of the biggest Hollywood releases in years. My first viewing will be this Sunday, catching a late-late showing at a local plex. Unless this thing is horrendous, I plan on seeing it at least one more time, perhaps more (like most of my nerd friends). Stay tuned because another update is forthcoming.