Star Wars director Rian Johnson is using deductive reasoning to explain where Luke Skywalker's robotic hand goes at the end of The Last Jedi. The right hand, or lack thereof, has long been a pivotal storytelling device in the Star Wars saga, beginning with the loss of Anakin Skywalker's arm that was severed below the elbow in a battle with Count Dooku in Attack of the Clones, and Luke's right hand, which was lost in his showdown with Darth Vader on Bespin in The Empire Strikes Back. Both father and son, of course, benefited by the technology available in the galaxy far, far away, though, and were each fitted with mechanical replacements.
Mostly covered with a black glove throughout Return of the Jedi, Luke (Mark Hamill) decided to show off the raw version of his robotic hand when he pulled back his hood at the conclusion of The Force Awakens, and displayed the mechanical limb throughout the duration of The Last Jedi. But, as fans who've seen the film know, Luke poured all of his universal energies into creating a holograph of his younger self to fight Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) as a way to distract his evil nephew long enough so the surviving members of the Resistance could escape Crait. As a result, the fight took so much out of Luke that he literally disappeared into the wind – robotic hand and all – to become one with the Force.
Apparently curious about where the metal object went when Luke made his grandiose exit, Twitter user Justin Arnold posed the burning question to Hamill whether the artificial object went with him or if Luke gets a new hand in his new realm. Hamill, in a reply tweet, didn't seem to know, so he deferred to Johnson, who had an explanation. Johnson effectively said that since the metal hand didn't go "clank" onto the rock where Luke was sitting before his big exit, he infers that it must have gone with the Jedi master. See the tweets below:
So Luke has a metal hand and passes into the Force. Does the hand go with him when he goes? Does he get a new hand? WHAT HAPPENS?
I need to know this
— Justin Arnold (@JustinOArnold) January 19, 2018
In the edit room someone joke suggested that when he fades away his robot hand should clank down onto the rock. Might have undercut the moment. ?
— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) January 19, 2018
While it seems like an obvious question, it's funny that no one has really brought up the fate of Luke's robotic hand until now. It's a keen observation, considering that between Anakin, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Luke, Luke appears to be the only Jedi to take an artificial limb with him as he becomes one with the Force. It's an important point to bring up because, if you remember, even lightsabers stay behind in the physical world. In the end, it only makes sense that anything on the Jedi master at the time they become one with the Force goes with him – including their robes – otherwise, when they make their spiritual visits with the living, there would be a lot of people averting their eyes.
While Johnson's answer was amusing, he actually may be inadvertently helping to solve a continuity problem for Episode IX. It's completely within reason to believe that Luke will reemerge in the final episode of the Skywalker family saga as a Force ghost, and now that Johnson has inferred that his robotic hand went with him when he left Ahch-To, director J.J. Abrams better make sure it's still attached to his arm when he makes his presumed comeback. Otherwise, Abrams, like Johnson, will have some explaining to do.
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