Despite the fact that the most recent chapter in Star Wars’ core Skywalker saga was called The Last Jedi, many fans are hoping that the Jedi Order will return in this December’s The Rise of Skywalker.
The Jedi have always given the galaxy hope in the face of tragedy. If the Separatists rise up, or the Empire rises up, or the First Order rises up, then the galaxy’s downtrodden can place their hopes of salvation in the Jedi Knights. Whether or not Rey is a Jedi is up in the air, but anyway, here are some of the movies' best references to this mysterious Order.
10 “The Jedi Were Real?”
When Rey meets the legendary Han Solo in The Force Awakens, she’s surprised to find that all the legends she spent her whole childhood hearing about – that a young Jedi used the Force to destroy the Death Star and eventually brought down the Galactic Empire with the help of a Rebel Alliance – were all true (although, come on, it’s only been thirty or so years in the story’s timeline – that’s not long enough for true events to become myth).
It’s a pretty iconic moment, especially since Daisy Ridley’s delivery of the line sells the fact that the Jedi have become mythical: “The Jedi were real?”
9 “Be Careful Of The Jedi, Anakin.”
In Episode III, Anakin Skywalker completes his journey from junkyard slave to Jedi Padawan to Sith Lord to maniacal overlord of the Galactic Empire. As we’ll probably see pay off when he returns to the silver screen in The Rise of Skywalker this December, it was all Palpatine’s fault.
He manipulated Anakin’s emotions and made him veer away from the Light Side of the Force and towards the Dark Side. It all started when he said, “Be careful of the Jedi, Anakin. Only through me can you achieve a power greater than any Jedi! Learn to know the Dark Side of the Force, and you will be able to save your wife from certain death.”
8 “Skywalker Lives! The Seed Of The Jedi Order Lives!”
Based on the fact that Supreme Leader Snoke is basically the exact same character as Emperor Palpatine and Palpatine’s distinctive laughter can be heard at the end of the teaser trailer for The Rise of Skywalker, some fans have predicted that it will be revealed that Snoke has actually been Palpatine in a host body the whole time.
While it’s not as far-fetched as some Star Wars fan theories, it does seem unlikely. Snoke’s similarities to Palpatine seem to have come from lazy storytelling as opposed to some plan for a big, grand reveal to cap off the sequel trilogy.
7 “The Jedi Are Extinct. Their Fire Has Gone Out Of The Universe.”
When Obi-Wan first arrives on the Death Star and Darth Vader starts to get paranoid that a stronger Force user is aboard his space station, Grand Moff Tarkin assures him, “The Jedi are extinct. Their fire has gone out of the universe. You, my friend, are all that’s left of their religion.”
It’s an early hint that Vader was once a Jedi, and also suggests that the Jedi aren’t around anymore. We’d see this play out with the execution of Order 66 in Episode III, but it’s interesting that George Lucas set it up this early in the movies’ release order.
6 “You Will Be A Jedi, I Promise.”
Qui-Gon Jinn was a great character, but he did screw the Jedi Order in a pretty epic way. He met a little slave kid on Tatooine and became entirely convinced that he was “the Chosen One” who would lead the galaxy to a state of ultimate peace. Yoda disagreed, as he could see great darkness in Anakin’s soul, but Qui-Gon was committed to training him.
And then Qui-Gon died. Reluctantly, the Jedi Council agreed to appoint Obi-Wan a Jedi Master and let him train Anakin as his first Padawan. Obi-Wan told Anakin, “You will be a Jedi, I promise,” ominously foreshadowing his turn to the Sith.
5 “The Son Of Skywalker Must Not Become A Jedi.”
After Luke Skywalker destroyed the Death Star, Emperor Palpatine grew dubious of him. He decided that this kid was too strong with the Force to not have a significant bloodline, and he quickly figured out that he was Darth Vader’s son. He convened with Vader to discuss the threat posed by Luke and he said, “The son of Skywalker must not become a Jedi.”
According to Disney’s sequel trilogy, although some fans have criticized its characterization of Luke Skywalker, he would eventually go on to become a bitter, grizzled, cynical Jedi Master who wanted to bring the entire Jedi Order down and be done with it.
4 “It’s Time For The Jedi To End.”
When Luke Skywalker’s journey begins in A New Hope, he’ll do anything to be a Jedi Knight. He trains with Yoda all throughout The Empire Strikes Back and even faces his worst fears in Return of the Jedi to become a true Jedi. But between then and now, he turned his back on the Jedi.
By the time Rey manages to track him down to a remote little island on the planet Ahch-To, he has decided, “It’s time for the Jedi to end.” Fortunately, Rey doesn’t agree with that, and so it seems like the Jedi Order will still rise again.
3 “You Must Confront Vader. Then, Only Then, A Jedi Will You Be. And Confront Him, You Will.”
In Return of the Jedi, Luke goes back to Dagobah to complete his training with Yoda, only to find that Yoda is on his deathbed. Yoda tells Luke that he doesn’t need any more training, and Luke sees this as a confirmation that he is a fully-fledged Jedi.
However, with his dying breath, Yoda tells Luke that there is one more stage of his training before he can call himself a Jedi: “You must confront Vader. Then, only then, a Jedi, will you be. And confront him, you will.” If this is true, then by the end of the movie, he is a Jedi.
2 “We’re Keepers Of The Peace, Not Soldiers.”
Before Palpatine is revealed to be the mastermind behind all the evil in the prequel trilogy (and sends Mace Windu flying out of a broken window to an uncertain fate), he’s just a politician. In fact, in Episode II, he has a pretty diplomatic meeting with Windu.
He says, “I will not let this Republic that has stood for a thousand years be split in two! My negotiations will not fail.” But Windu wants to make one thing perfectly clear: “If they do, you must realize that there aren’t enough Jedi to protect the Republic. We’re keepers of the peace, not soldiers.”
1 “Without The Jedi, There Can Be No Balance In The Force.”
In The Last Jedi, Luke Skywalker was determined to bring the Jedi Order to an end. But then Rey showed up and asked to be trained as a Jedi, so he reluctantly helped her to get in touch with her Force sensitivity and struggled to keep her on the Light Side as she was tempted by bad boy Kylo Ren.
That whole movie explored whether or not we need the Jedi, but Max von Sydow’s mysterious character Lor San Tekka already made a case in the Jedi’s favor in the opening sequence of The Force Awakens: “Without the Jedi, there can be no balance in the Force.” We need the Jedi to stop people like Kylo Ren from succeeding.