For all of the other Star Wars fans out there, some big news dropped yesterday: the title of the next Star Wars movie, The Last Jedi!
But what does this mean?! Who is the last Jedi? The obvious answer seems to be Rey, but let us discuss a bit.
We all know that Luke Skywalker was the last known and living Jedi Knight at the end of Return of the Jedi once his dad, Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker, died. But 30 years later, The Force Awakens told us that Luke had attempted to revive the Jedi Order with a new generation of Jedi, all of whom were apparently killed by Kylo Ren. And yet Rey, the Force-sensitive with a mysterious past who was living on Jakku and may as well have been in hiding for many years prior to The Force Awakens, saw her powers emerge quickly and dramatically after confronting Kylo Ren during the search for the long-since missing Skywalker. By the end of The Force Awakens, as Rey returned Luke’s original lightsaber to him at his hiding place on Ahch-To, it was clear that we now had two Jedi – the master and the apprentice.
Which brings us back to the question of who is the last Jedi in the title?
Of course, Jedi can be used as both the plural and singular form of the word, so it is possible that The Last Jedi refers to both Luke and Rey. Or perhaps it even refers to the next generation of Jedi that Rey represents. While Kylo Ren destroyed Luke’s dream of rebuilding the Jedi Order years ago, will Rey’s arrival awaken Skywalker from his guilt-ridden slumber in hiding and remind him that the Jedi Order must persist? A new Jedi Order is essential to serve as the guardians of peace and justice in the New Republic, and Luke and Rey must begin the process of working to find new young Jedi together.
The Last Jedi could simply refer to Luke. The opening scroll of The Force Awakens specifically referred to Luke Skywalker as “the last Jedi.” The argument could also be made that Rey will now be the last Jedi, as Luke is not getting any younger and we have no guarantees that he will necessarily survive Episode VIII (RIP Han Solo). But this is where things get interesting, according to IGN:
“[r]eports indicate that the poster’s title was first posted by the official Brazilian Star Wars Twitter account with a translation referring to this last Jedi as singular and male (that original tweet has since been deleted). I only speak English and Wookiee, so I can’t translate this myself, but if anyone reading can confirm this please comment below (the original deleted tweet is screen-grabbed here). Of course, it’s also possible the social media staff for Star Wars Brazil took it upon themselves to translate the title in this way without actually knowing specifically what it means. If this is correct, however, that rules out Rey as the last Jedi.”
But what if the last Jedi turn out to be Luke, Rey, and Kylo Ren? We know that the former Ben Solo has been conflicted about his turn to the Dark Side. Perhaps this film will see Kylo Ren taking the reverse course of Anakin and turning back to the light side instead of the dark side of the Force. Whereas the prequel films set up Anakin as the great Jedi who would fall from grace, and the original films set up Luke simply as the boy who would become the savior of the Jedi, perhaps Kylo/Ben will be the Dark Force Sith who returns to the light side and assumes his rightful place at his uncle’s side as one of the last Jedi.
For now, we can only speculate about these possibilities. But in the meantime, let me know in the comments who you think is the last Jedi!
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