Since the teaser trailer for Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker dropped like a ton of Bantha Poodoo on an eagerly-awaiting internet, speculation has been at an all-time high. With the return of fan-favorite director, J.J. Abrams to correct went so wrong in Rian Johnson's The Last Jedi and the familiar face of Billy Dee Williams as Lando Calrissian (as well as the foreboding offscreen laughter of Ian McDiarmid's Emperor Palpatine), fans are wondering if more well-loved characters may turn up for the final chapter in the Skywalker saga. Below, we name five characters we'd be happy to see again, and five we'd choose being marooned on Hoth alone over spending any more time with.
10 Want: Darth Vader (Sebastian Shaw)
The moment Ian McDiarmid’s menacing laugh was heard in the Episode IX teaser trailer, one question has echoed through the minds of fans: If Palpatine is alive, is it too much to wonder if Vader, his prodigy, right-hand man, loyal servant, and one of the greatest villains ever to grace the silver screen could make a return? It’s not beyond the realm of possibility, but it’s a bit sticky: should Abrams bring him back in full black helmet, heavy-breathing mode for easy fan service? Or do we get a Peter Cushing-style recreation of Sebastian Shaw as a Force spirit and respect the character’s sacrifice to save his son at the conclusion of Return of The Jedi (1983)? Only time will tell, but either way, it must be handled delicately.
9 Want: Yoda
Not only did The Last Jedi royally mess up Luke Skywalker’s character development, but it made Yoda, perhaps the greatest Jedi who ever lived, look like a mischievous loon. Showing up and causing chaos (“The sacred texts!") rather than imparting any sort of wisdom, Johnson seemed to forget that the character only feigned madness before Luke proved himself worthy of his knowledge in The Empire Strikes Back (1980), he wasn't always totally bananas. In short: if The Last Jedi is the last time we see the little green man, it’s a total shame. Hopefully, Abrams will give him a chance to regain some of the nobility and dignity that Johnson robbed him of with Episode IX.
8 Want: Wedge Antilles
Played by Dennis Lawson in the Original Trilogy, Wedge Antilles may not be easily recognizable to casual fans, but he’s a valued supporting character to obsessives. As one of Luke’s besties in the Rebel Alliance and the only pilot to survive both attack-runs on the Death Star, Antilles is one of the great unsung heroes of the Star Wars universe. Though, if the filmmakers were going to bring him back for the new series, they likely would have already. (Lawson is alive and kicking, and he famously said a return would bore him). It would be a better-late-than-never scenario since familiar faces like Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher are dropping like Womp Rats!
7 Want: Mon Mothma
Aside from the denizens of the Mos Eisley Cantina and IG-88, it’s arguable that no character with fewer screen time has been more well-regarded than Mon Mothma. Played by Caroline Blakiston as the Rebel Alliance’s sole female leader, Mothma was a welcome sight in the conspicuously male-centric Original Trilogy. Interestingly, Genevieve O'Reilly was brought in to play a much younger version of the character in Revenge of the Sith (2005) but her scenes were eventually left on the cutting room floor. Luckily, she was brought back to assume the role again in Rogue One (2016). Though it obviously takes place far later, Mothma would surely be sympathetic to the cause of Sequel Trilogy's Resistance, and bringing Blakiston back would be a nice tip of the hat to the past of a series in which the women are quickly coming to dominate the narrative.
6 Want: Obi-Wan
Though it would seem that the planned Obi-Wan standalone movie has been scrapped, it's not unlikely that the character could make an appearance in Episode IX. Though the spirit forms of Force users have become wildly over-powered (let’s not even get started on that whole Luke projecting himself across time and space thing), Obi-Wan has always been at his best appearing as his glowy, blue, incorporeal self. Though Alec Guinness has long ago shuffled off his mortal coil, Ewan McGregor’s performance in the Prequel Trilogy was notable for the way he both resembled Guinness and masterfully captured his refined air. If a standalone feature is no longer in the cards, why not give the old boy a go with some liquid latex and a white wig?
5 Don't Want: Boba Fett
Before the Prequel Series, if you asked anyone who the most mysterious, enigmatic character in Star Wars was, they would all give one answer: Boba Fett. Nevermind that he should still be bathing in the digestive juices of the Sarlacc Pit as we speak, if Palpatine is back, all bets are off. When Lucas featured the character in 2002’s Attack of the Clones (as a pint-sized genetic copy of his “dad”, Jango Fett) it was everything fans didn’t want. This isn’t to say that the original character lost something, but, as the Prequel Trilogy taught us over and over and over again, sometimes the mystery is more fun than the answer.
4 Darth Vader (Hayden Christensen)
On the opposite end of the double-edged sword that is Vader potentially returning is the most hated person (other than Lucas) connected with the Star Wars universe: Hayden Christensen. In the Prequel films, the studly Canadian—all hairless chest and dead-eyed smolder—turned in a performance of rare incompetence and made Lucas’ famously wooden dialogue sound especially hollow. Worse still: Lucas' replaced Sebastian Shaw's Force ghost in the conclusion of the Return of The Jedi with Christensen, who, if you ask fans, isn't fit to lick Yoda's stubby green talons. But Abrams has half a brain, so it’s unlikely that he’ll bring Christensen back to reprise the role, but stranger things have happened in that galaxy far, far away.
3 Supreme Leader Snoke
Abrams has talked about the temptation to retcon what happened in The Last Jedi, but that shouldn’t mean bringing back characters that were mishandled from the jump. Sure, Supreme Leader Snoke was kind of intriguing upon first blush, and his lack of a backstory or interesting resolution has emerged as a point of contention across the web, but trying to re-work a character that nobody was all that invested in in the first place would be the wrong move for a series that has spent far too much time with its eyes cast backward instead of charting thematic courses of its own.
2 Wickett The Ewok
No one, not even JJ Abrams, is immune to misguided fanservice, and, love ‘em or hate ‘em, you can bet your bottom dollar that some Disney executive wants to see these little intergalactic teddy bears back on toy store shelves. Though some fans would squeal with joy if Warwick Davis’ heroic little fuzzball made a cameo (Porgs have nothing on Ewoks, just saying) the fanboys would ask for Abrams' head on an Endorian spear if he allowed Return of The Jedi’s most controversial addition to “yub nub” into the 21st century.
1 Jar Jar Binks:
Is an explanation even necessary?