With the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker just under six months away, excitement is beginning to rise. Fans were left buzzing when the first trailer for the blockbuster released back in April and Disney has managed to get fans back on-side following the release of The Last Jedi, which had audiences split when it hit screens back in the winter of 2017.
It’s unfair on director Rian Johnson, who has been inundated with abusive comments on social media in the wake of several decisions that had certain members of the fan-base aghast. We now look at six things that The Rise of Skywalker should change when it comes out in December and four things that director JJ Abrams should look to keep the same.
10 Don’t Retcon: The Force Bond
One of the more divisive aspects from The Last Jedi concerns the force bond that exists between villain Kylo Ren and hero Rey. The duo has been tipped to be cousins, siblings, or even star-crossed lovers, with Rian Johnson’s decision to create the Force bond between the pair leading to speculation aplenty. It was established that Supreme Leader Snoke actually bridged their minds but the bond is still very much present at the end of the movie, long after Kylo has impaled his master with his grandfather’s old lightsaber.
Some want it scrapped, fearing that it makes Kylo less villainous. But it should stay because there’s intrigue there. If Snoke is dead, why does the bond exist? Does the existence of the bond even suggest Snoke survived? Is it a sign they’re related? Is it actually existent because they’re both in love? Alas, we do not know. But we certainly need answers.
9 Retcon: Rey’s parents
You knew this one was coming, right? While there’s nothing wrong with Johnson’s decision to make Rey’s parents ‘nobodies’ it’s a decision that has angered much of the Star Wars fanbase — for logistical reasons. If she’s not of Jedi blood, how is she so powerful? After all, we’ve witnessed the Galaxy’s biggest heroine beat Kylo Ren, survive torture from Supreme Leader Snoke and even floor the great Luke Skywalker during a confrontation on Ahch’ To. She must, therefore, be somebody!
It would be wise for Star Wars to alter this, certainly. It just makes no sense that Rey is as powerful as she is without her having a famous face in her lineage. We’re not saying her parents have to be Han Solo or Leia—or even Luke Skywalker—but it has to be somebody force-sensitive. ‘Nobodies’ who ‘sold her for drinking money’ do not fit the bill.
8 Don’t Retcon: The Finn and Rose Romance
Star Wars has always had romantic undertones, whether fans like it or not. In the original trilogy, it was all a question of whether Princess Leia Organa would end up with Luke Skywalker or Han Solo (obviously before we knew Luke and Leia were related). In the prequel trilogy, it was Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala, the forbidden romance that would ultimately lead to Anakin becoming Darth Vader. And, so far, it seems like Finn and Rose Tico will be the loved-up couple of the sequel trilogy.
Obviously, Finn still appears to have feelings for Rey. He’s also been tipped to hook up with Poe Dameron but, as things stand, it’s Finose (see what we did there) that seems to be the likeliest romantic relationship. And we’re backing this. Star Wars needs a golden couple and, given how both care so much about the Resistance and have a knack of getting into trouble, it’s something that should stay the same.
7 Don’t Retcon: Snoke’s Death
Prior to the release of The Last Jedi two years ago, audiences were excited to learn more about Supreme Leader Snoke. Some believed the First Order kingpin to be Darth Plageus, others a reincarnation of Emperor Palpatine and some even a version of the late, great Darth Vader. However, after learning very little about the giant villain, he is unceremoniously killed by Kylo Ren during his interrogation of Rey inside his throne room.
It would undoubtedly be great to learn more about Snoke and his origins, but that time has passed. He’s dead and you even see the body, with Rian Johnson making sure we get a glimpse of his severed body. With Emperor Palpatine coming back, it would be an unwise move to bring Kylo’s old master back from there as well.
6 Retcon: Luke Skywalker’s Death
While we’re against the idea of Snoke coming back, what with Palpatine and Kylo Ren likely to be carrying the villain torch, the prospect of Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker coming back to life would certainly set pulses racing. Luke was non-existent barring a non-speaking cameo at the end of The Force Awakens and he was downright rude and patronizing during The Last Jedi. The Rise of Skywalker, therefore, gives Disney the chance to make amends.
With Palpatine coming back into the fray after 30 years, Luke should too. If the big bad guy has found a way to carry on living, then what’s the problem? It would give Disney a chance to show that Luke didn’t actually grow into a sad, angsty old man. And the prospect of him going up against Palpatine again, in the showdowns of all showdowns, is one simply too good to ignore.
5 Retcon: The Character of General Hux
General Hux in The Force Awakens definitely had some swagger about him. He had no qualms with squaring up to Kylo Ren, and even took the First Order’s villainous ways to new heights when he wipes out the Galactic Republic using the lasers of Starkiller Base. His character in the Last Jedi, though, was the complete opposite.
Right from the first minute Hux loses his aura of authority and control, with Poe Dameron outsmarting him in a dogfight and Supreme Leader Snoke then throwing him face-first against the floor in a comedic fashion. Hux’ humiliation grows as the movie goes on, with Kylo Ren choking him and prisoners Finn and Rose Tico managing to escape from his clutches. Where did the villain of The Force Awakens go? Hux has to be stronger and more menacing when The Rise of Skywalker hits screens in December.
4 Retcon: The Character Of Chewbacca
Ah, Chewbacca. What has Disney done to you? Everybody’s favorite Wookie was marginalized during the events of The Force Awakens, fighting alongside Han Solo at Takodana and shooting Kylo Ren on Starkiller Base but, those things aside, he was criminally underused. And he was again in The Last Jedi, sharing a touching moment with Luke but spending the rest of the movie stuck in the shadows.
We want to see Chewie back where he belongs: as a key ally to the Resistance and an even greater weapon on the battlefield. There’s no excuse for him not to be closer to the likes of Rey, Leia, Finn, Poe, and Rose this time around. And fans will be fuming if he spends another blockbuster on the fringes of the action, rather than right in the mix.
3 Retcon: Kylo’s Uncertainty
It’s time for Kylo Ren to pick a side. After two movies, we’re still none the wiser as to what the First Order leader and head of the Knights of Ren wants. He makes it clear it’s time for the Jedi and Sith to end, but what does that actually mean? He doesn’t want to join the Resistance and has no wish to team up with Rey, despite clearly having some strong feelings towards her. What exactly is going on in Ben Solo’s head?
Kylo in this movie should be a bad guy. He’s killed off Snoke, he’s head of the First Order and with daddy Han Solo no longer around, he’s free to be what he wants to be. Making him good would mean The Rise of Skywalker become a rehash of Return of the Jedi. And that, really, is not what fans want.
2 Retcon: The Criminal Underuse Of The Droids
When you think of Star Wars, you think of many characters. Darth Vader, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa, Han Solo, the list goes on. However, you can almost certainly think of droids C3PO and R2D2, with the galaxy’s greatest double act becoming two of the most iconic characters in movie history.
So far, though, they’ve barely been used. R2D2 only woke up at the end of The Force Awakens and both he and his partner were significantly marginalized for The Last Jedi. Fans want more of their favorite droids and, while BB8 is rather cool, he lacks the charm of his counterparts. It’s time to get the duo back for one final battle.
1 Retcon: The Weak Resistance
At the end of The Last Jedi, it looks as if the Resistance has no answer to the might of the First Order. Luke Skywalker, the ace up their sleeve, had faded into a peaceful death. Han Solo was already gone. And Rey, Leia, C3PO, R2D2, Poe, Rose, and Finn are among just a few soldiers still standing and ready to go to war one last time.
But, given this is the final movie of the saga, they need to be fighting on an even playing field. Thankfully Lando Calrissian is on his way, but that should just be the start. Avengers: Endgame showed that big battles, with the allies well-stocked, works better than them fighting against the odds. And it’s this formula Star Wars should change. It’s time to get the gang, the ENTIRE gang, back together.