Warning: SPOILERS For Solo: A Star Wars Story
Solo: A Star Wars Story rockets the galaxy's most infamous scoundrel on his first adventure, but also leaves some big unanswered questions in its wake. With Alden Ehrenreich taking over the role of the young Han Solo, the film depicts key events in the smuggler's life fans have always wanted to see, such as the first meeting between Han and Chewbacca, how Solo wins the Millennium Falcon from Lando Calrissian in a game of sabacc, and making the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs. Ron Howard's film also adds numerous new layers to Han Solo's early days so that fans learn how he got into the dangerous life of smuggling across the galaxy and what enemies he made along the way.
While Solo is a complete adventure which also sets up potential sequels and spinoffs, the movie does leave open some questions it neglects to fully answer. Some of this is because the movie's story has to maintain forward momentum, leaving a few key details unspoken. Inevitably, the film can't fill in all the answers to questions fans may have.
Some of the details the movie omits and answers fans seek can be found in ancillary Star Wars media such as spinoff novels and the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels set in the expanded universe. Nevertheless, many members of the audience won't be up to speed on all aspects of the EU and will inevitably leave the theater wondering about a few things.
Here, then, are the biggest unanswered questions from Solo: A Star Wars Story and, if applicable, where fans might find the answers not offered by the film:
- This Page: Questions About Han, Chewbacca, and Qi'ra
- Page 2: Questions About the State of the Galaxy
What Was Han's Real Last Name?
One early surprise is that Han is given his famous last name by, of all people, an Imperial recruitment officer when he applies to become a pilot for the Imperial Navy. It's an interesting twist that one of the galaxy's greatest heroes (or he will be in the future) took his name from the greatest force for evil of that era. But it begs the question: Why didn't Han have a last name before Solo?
It doesn't really make sense that Han didn't; later in the film, he relates a story about his father, whom Han has childhood memories of. Han's father was a shipbuilder who helped construct the Empire's vessels on Corellia. Did Han's father also not have a last name? That doesn't sound likely. It's possible that Han shed his father's surname when he was recruited to join Lady Proxima's criminal gang as a child, and went by his first name in his life of crime (his childhood friend Qi'ra also suspiciously lacks a surname). If that's the case, then Han did have a last name before it became Solo - but what was it?
How Did Han End Up Working For Lady Proxima?
Solo takes place about a decade before Rogue One; Qi'ra and Han are young adults roughly in their early 20s when the film begins, with the main story taking place three years later. Outside of them obviously growing up together and being romantically involved, Solo doesn't offer up many details as to how they were recruited (or forced) into a criminal life by Lady Proxima.
Thankfully, fans can turn to the YA novel Most Wanted by Rae Carson, which depicts the lives of the teenage Han and Qi'ra as they navigate the seedy, industrial underworld of Corellia. The most important part of the Han and Qi'ra relationship as it relates to the film is their romantic bond, which Aldren Eirenreich and Emilia Clarke's acting definitely conveys. But had the film offered some more tidbits about their shared past, it would have only strengthened fans' appreciation of their relationship.
Why Was Chewbacca The Empire's Prisoner on Mimban?
Han Solo met Chewbacca when they were both prisoners of the Empire on the planet Mimban. Han was tossed in a pit to be killed and eaten by "the Beast", which is what the Imperials called their Wookiee in chains. Instead, they formed a fast friendship, turned the tables of their captors, and escaped. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship that spans decades.
Han was able to quickly gain Chewie's trust because he speaks and understands the Wookiee language, Shyriiwook. Han's new furry friend offered some tidbits about the Empire attacking and enslaving his fellow tribe members on his homeworld of Kashyyyk, but Han never asked what Chewbacca did to end up incarcerated in a muddy hole in Mimban. Ultimately, how Chewie got there isn't as important as where they went next together, but it still would have been nice for the film to let the Wookiee tell his tale.
How Did Qi'ra End Up With Dryden Vos?
The last time Han saw Qi'ra, she was being dragged away by Lady Proxima's thugs. As Han spent the next three years in the Empire's armed forces, dreaming of returning to Corellia for her, Qi'ra managed to do quite well for herself. When they encountered each other again on Dryden Vos' opulent yacht, Qi'ra was now the trusted lieutenant of Vos and a member of the Crimson Dawn crime syndicate.
How Qi'ra managed to rise up to such a lofty position in the galactic underworld in just a few years is a tale begging to be told - but Solo doesn't. The best the film manages is Qi'ra and Vos both alluding to "the things she's done" after Vos found her and took her away from Corellia. Considering how physically intimate Vos and Qi'ra are and her capacity for murder she later reveals when she doublecrosses Vos and usurps him as the leader of Crimson Dawn, the story of Qi'ra becoming a crime lord invites all kinds of sordid speculation. For now, fans just have to imagine just what Qi'ra did for three years, unless a sequel reveals more.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019