The second Star Wars: The Last Jedi trailer has a lot more reveals than the last one, but somehow most of the movie is still shrouded in mystery. The movie is going to release in just over 2 months time, and Lucasfilm's spoiler avoidant marketing appears to have been more than successful at making it look exciting and interesting without giving away any major plot details that otherwise wise ruin the movie's twists and turns.
Even so, there's still a good a deal of information to be gleaned from the two and a half minute trailer in order to confirm rumors, give credence to fan theories, or spawn entirely new paths of speculation.
Needless to say, the following may contain spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The Heart of the First Order
While The Force Awakens didn't establish much about the First Order other than some of its military capabilities, including Starkiller Base, The Last Jedi seems to be taking us into the heart of the First Order's infrastructure, which is likely Supreme Leader Snoke's Mega-Class Star Destroyer - the Supremacy. The Supremacy is massive and is said to be used to not only house large numbers of ships and infantry, but it also has the ability to construct First Order Star Destroyers.
We know Kylo Ren is returning to Snoke at the end of The Force Awakens, so when we see him sans helmet and cape overlooking a massive hanger and the construction of Gorilla Walkers, AT-AT's and more, it seems logical to assume that's where he is. While Snoke was just a hologram last time we saw him, we are now near the center of his operation, meaning there may be quite a few reveals to be had regarding the inner functions of the First Order from shipbuilding and troop training to maybe even some sort of its political machinations.
The Battle of Crait Unfolds
The massive battle teased at Crait is being set up as one of the most iconic moments of the movie with the planet's red color visible under the thin layer of salt, creating a colorful effect when it's disturbed such as when resistance ski-speeders fly over it.
While not much is known about what makes Crait important and why the First Order and Resistance have chosen it as the best place to face off, several new images from the trailer help fill in the gaps. First is the All Terrain MegaCaliber Six, AKA the AT-M6, AKA "gorilla walkers." This may not be the first time they've been revealed in the movie's marketing, but the line of heavy war machines is bound to pose a threat to the resistance. Interesting enough, the lineup also features what appear to be classic All Terrain Armored Transport (AT-AT) walkers with a slightly updated head. Assuming they're the same size as the original models, it just shows how vast the Gorilla Walkers actually are and also suggests that the AT-M& isn't merely an AT-AT replacement, but that the vehicle may serve a distinctly different purpose altogether.
The other notable aspect here is the First Order shuttle identical to the one Kylo Ren uses in The Force Awakens. While it's reasonable to assume the First Order has any number of shuttles that look that way, we later see Ren leading a group of stormtroopers through the caves of Crait, meaning he definitely plays a role in the battle on the ground. Considering his mother, Leia, is also on the ground, this may be setting up a face-off between mother and son (again, nore on that later)
It's hard to read too much into this because entire battle devoid of context, but a shot of Resistance soldiers and some sort of crystalline looking fox creatures fleeing toward a hanger suggests maybe it doesn't go so well for the Resistance.
The Master and Apprentice
Kylo Ren seemed unstoppable in his first appearance onscreen when he stops a blaster bolt with the Force, but by the end of the movie we see him bested by the untrained newcomer, Rey, and Snoke commands Ren return to him to complete his training. While we've seen plenty of established dark side master/apprentice relationships in the history of Star Wars with Darth Sidious' apprentices from Darth Maul to Darth Tyrannus (Count Dooku) to Darth Vader, most of these relationships appear on screen fully formed. Vader turns to the dark side at the end of Revenge of the Sith and by the time we get to A New Hope, he seems to have the villain thing all sorted out, with all that development happening in non-movie stories.
Kylo Ren is different. Kylo Ren has only been training under Snoke for a few years, and the fact that Snoke has more to teach him about the Force means that, while they aren't Sith, we may finally get a better glimpse of that dark relationship here. What's apparent from the trailer is that Ren has to submit himself to Snoke. We see him in a completely red room, presumably Snoke's throne room, with Praetorian guards around the perimeter, and Ren has to pick up his lightsaber from the floor, which is an odd place for him to leave it, suggesting he had to set it down to kneel or subjugate himself before his master. While this isn't a big reveal in and of itself, it's definitely a major change from his interaction with the giant hologram of Episode VII.
Luke is Scared
After waiting over 30 years to see what happened to Luke Skywalker after Return of the Jedi, The Force Awakens played a cruel tease by leaving his reveal to the very last moment of the movie, telling us only that he went into exile after Ben Solo became Kylo Ren and ruined his efforts to bring the Jedi Order back. It wasn't until the first trailer for The Last Jedi where we even hear any dialogue from him, but most of what he says is merely a repetition of the film's title, saying "It's time for the Jedi to end."
This trailer, however, gives us a lot more, but it might not be the Luke some fans want. He seems uncertain of himself and suspicious of Rey. When he sees just how much "raw power" she has, he tells her "I've seen this raw strength only once before it didn't scare me enough then. It does now." While admitting he's scared is not necessarily the same thing as giving in to fear, it nonetheless presents the question. As we all know, fear is the path to the dark side - the same path his father took to get there. Han said Luke's objective in going into hiding was to discover the first Jedi Temple, which made it sound like maybe he was in exile because he was seeking wisdom, knowledge, or some other source of aid, but maybe it's fear that's keeping him on Ahch-To now. Fear of failure, fear of inadequacy, fear that he himself will fall to the dark side. Either way, the courageous bright-eyed young man that destroyed the first Death Star and brought Anakin Skywalker back from the dark side is nowhere to be seen in Luke's face in this trailer.
The First Jedi Temple
Leading up to The Force Awakens, Star Wars canon seemed to have an interesting focus on these Force trees. The Shattered Empire comic book set right after Return of the Jedi sees Luke and Shara Bey, Poe Dameron's mother, go to one of Sheev Palpatine's secret research outposts to recover two sapling trees he cut from the giant tree in the courtyard of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. The trees were strong in the Force and it seemed like they would be central to rebuilding the Jedi Order, but he gave one away to the Dameron family when they settled on Yavin IV and kept the other, which we have yet to see again.
If the trees have some sort of connection to the Jedi Order, or particularly Jedi Temples, then it stands to reason that the first Jedi Temple on Ahch-To might also be the site of one of the oldest trees. Or, as we see in this newest trailer, the old tree and the first Jedi Temple may be one in the same. We already saw the ancient books bearing the Jedi sigil inside what could be assumed to be a tree from the last trailer, but when we see that shot again here, it's placed right after a shot of Rey approaching a very big very old very dead tree, suggesting it houses the little library. While the dead tree very well may be representative of Luke's faith in the Jedi way, it's also a symbol of the Jedi Order itself, which is all but dead.
It would be very symbolic for Luke to have planted the sapling Force tree near that site, but considering he only came to Ahch-To after an attempt to start another Jedi Academy, it's highly possible that sapling was destroyed with his academy, meaning the last of the Force trees is gone, as the Jedi are about to be.
The Last Jedi will only be the second new Star Wars episode of the new era, but we've already seen some impressive displays of Force powers, from Ren stopping a blaster bolt in mid-air to Rey learning how to tap into an innate connection to the Force and defeat Kylo Ren in combat. This trailer is all about that new, intense power. In the opening, Snoke calls it "raw, untamed power," and Luke, likewise, calls it "raw strength." Looking back on the title of The Force Awakens, the decision to call it that might be making a little more sense.
We hear Rey saying "something inside me has always been there, but now it's awake and I need help," so it's clear she's feeling it now even more than she was before, and Luke is obviously shocked by her power in a way that actually makes him concerned, and he suggests that he's only felt that kind of power when he was training his nephew. What makes this most interesting is that, while Snoke and Luke both use the term "raw" here, Snoke craves that power while Luke is "scared" by it. Is the trailer's audio editing tricky and they're both talking to Rey, or are Rey and Ren unique in that they both have a uniquely raw strength? A mysterious entry in the databank on StarWars.com has always said that the two are linked by a "mysterious connection." Whatever that connection is, it seems Luke can feel it.
Destruction of temple
Exactly what makes Star Wars Star Wars has always been, and probably will always be, up for debate, but there are a number of consistent factors in each of the movies many people can agree on, and one of those is the fact that Star Wars doesn't ever use flashbacks. This unspoken rule was broken in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, but that wasn't an actual "episode," and was intended to stray outside certain conventions. This was a big question leading up to The Force Awakens because there were some moments in the trailers that looked like they could actually be flashbacks, only for it to be a "Forceback" vision/dream Rey had when first making contact with the old Skywalker lightsaber.
We find ourselves in a familiar position again as more shots show the destruction of what is most likely the Jedi temple Luke started. While it makes sense that this would be a dream again, it's not readily evident in the way it's shot. Will we be seeing a full-on flashback of the fall of Luke's Jedi, or will we see something more mysterious like the Forceback again? The answer is more than likely the latter, but if we're introducing dream sequences once again, that might have an impact on how a couple other scenes from the trailer are read as well...
Kylo Ren's Conflict
Kylo Ren's introduction in The Force Awakens may have made him look cold and in control, but it was quickly revealed that he was far more conflicted than he let on and his emotions regularly got the better of him, losing his cool and slashing apart a console on his Star Destroyer and showing a resistance to his master's orders when facing off against his father. It seems fairly clear that Ren wants to be evil, and while it might come naturally sometimes, he's even confessed to "feeling the pull to the light."
This same conflict is front and center again in The Last Jedi when he takes off his helmet - revealing a fancy synth-skin bandage on his face where Rey slashed him during their battle - and begins smashing his headgear against the wall, possibly leading to the image of the helmet and mask laying destroyed on the ground from the first trailer.
Being Star Wars, fans are naturally curious if Ren will seek redemption, or if it's even possible after he killed the Jedi and Han Solo. Whatever the case, it likely won't just be fans wondering if Ren will continue down this dark path as far as it will take him, or if he'll ever try to be Ben Solo again.
Escape From D'Qar
The ashes of Starkiller Base are still hot when the movie first starts, and the First Order knows exactly where to find the Resistance, so they'll be headed straight to the base on D'Qar as the resistance attempts to flee. Based on a few shots of space combat in which D'Qar's asteroid belt can be seen, the First Order, with at least a couple Star Destroyers and what's bound to be numerous TIE fighters, can be seen taking down a good number of the fleeing Resistance ships as they presumably try to jump to Crait.
Poe Dameron, who otherwise doesn't get much attention this trailer, has a big part in this battle as we see him engaging both TIE's and a Star Destroyer as well as utilizing his fancy extra booster on the back of his X-Wing. While the initial reveal that he has this upgrade made it sound like it was intended to help him escape tight spots, the trailer shows him using it to hurtle towards the First Order's oncoming D'Qar invasion force.
The Son of Solo
Ben Solo may be the son of Han Solo, but as Kylo Ren it's hard to see any traces of the old scoundrel in him at all. He is actuaslly Han's opposite in many ways: he trained to be a Jedi, he abandoned those close to him, and he's super intense, but it seems like a hint of that old Solo spark might shine through in The Last Jedi, as well as a heaping helping of Skywalker when he gets behind the stick of his TIE silencer. Don't be surprised if the son of Han Solo and the grandson of Anakin Skywalker is more dangerous than ever when he's flying.
We definitely see a bit of his grandfather in him here, too, not just in his prototype TIE fighter that clearly resembles Vader's own TIE Advanced, but the way he simply rips through the Resistance fleet may remind a good number of fans of the time Darth Vader laid waste to most of Phoenix Squadron on Star Wars Rebels.
TIE Silencer and The Supremacy
Speaking of Kylo Ren's TIE Silencer, we get more than a good look at it in the trailer, including a shot that reveals the massive Mega-Class Star Destroyer, the Supremacy, in the background. The TIE Supremacy is a fairly natural evolution from the classic TIE design, but it's clearly a larger size and its boxy red cockpit instantly makes it iconic compared to its simplistic TIE fighter cousins.
The Supremacy, on the other hand, is a major departure from the more familiar triangle shape of Star Destroyers, but it's also an incomparably big, with a wingspan that's more than 8 times the bow-to-stern length of a Super Star Destroyer. This behemoth is the center of the First Order's power and even serves as a sort of mobile shipyard, with the facilities to produce more Star Destroyers on board. Without any planets to establish a bearing, it's hard to know where or when this battle takes place, but considering the Resistance ships appear to be engaging, not fleeing, this is most likely not a part of the opening space battle.
The Boy and His Mother
Kylo Ren's physical scars still haven't healed from the duel he had on Starkiller base after killing his father, but that doesn't stop him from going after his mother, Leia. We still don't know the sequence of events that led to him turning on his uncle's Jedi, killing them and joining the First Order, but he was obviously strongly affected, believing he has power in his destiny, saying "kill it, if you have to. That's the only way to become who you're meant to be." Despite this dangerous mantra, it looks like he hesitates after targeting the bridge of the Mon Calamari Cruiser his mother is on. Is the pain from killing Han still too fresh, or has he always shared a stronger bond to his mother, making it harder to pull the trigger on her?
Regardless, the idea of literally putting Leia in his crosshairs is sure to get a reaction from fans after the tragic passing of Carrie Fisher at the end of last year. Her remaining role in the universe is uncertain, but there has been a lot of discussion over her story being properly resolved in Episode IX, meaning we won't have to sit through Kylo Ren continuing to kill our heroes, which admittedly just wouldn't go over well.
The Mighty Porg
The Porgs are all the rave with The Last Jedi, and apparently, they're fairly prolific on the island of Ahch-To, but this trailer only features one, and it appears to have significantly more personality than people had been ascribing them previously. While it could just be this single moment and not a predominant characteristic, the behavior of the porg when it bellows to echo Chewbacca almost leans more toward Minion than it does penguin, but either way, it appears Chewbacca has a new pet - or friend - in the single porg that tags along to Crait, although fans would surely be excited to learn the Falcon's cargo hold has been entirely taken over by the winged creatures.
The porgs have already drawn some comparisons to the somewhat controversial Ewoks of Return of the Jedi, but it's not yet clear if they're able to play a part in the story of if they're just some fluffy eye candy and comedic relief and play no other role. Either way, you can expect this movie to sell a lot of stuffed porgs.
Finn vs Phasma
Anyone still mad that Phasma didn't get any epic fight scenes in The Force Awakens should be thrilled to see this. Phasma and Finn finally face off for the first time (say that 5 times fast) in what looks like one of the most visually impressive scenes in the trailer. Phasma's armor has never looked cooler, and you can even see Finn's reflection in her helmet.
How we get here is another story. There's an earlier shot in the trailer of Finn being led by stormtroopers indicating he's been captured. Since the fight scene appears to take place in the hangar bay of the Supremacy, Finn is probably on the Mega Sar Destroyer. With one of the last shots of the trailers suggesting Rey may also be holed up on the ship somewhere, this could be a rescue mission, but the state of the hanger indicates there's a lot more going on, and maybe the Resistance was able to land a major blow as a part of a more coordinated effort.
Rey Takes a Dive
Rey appears to undergo a variety of different training programs on the island under Luke's supervision, although it's not clear exactly how long the training lasts in total. This shot has her diving into a pool and swimming to the bottom, possibly in search of something, and we see a dangerous looking skull with long teeth visible down in the corner of the screen.
This could simply be a physical conditioning exercise, but she appears to be in search of something. According to some of the promotional images. Luke's X-Wing, and who knows what else, appear to have sunken to the bottom of the ocean near the island. Luke also noticeable isn't carrying his green-bladed lightsaber in any of the images (not even at his belt), so it's possible that many of Luke's belongings, including his lightsaber, are with his X-Wing, or maybe he even sank them himself as a part of his self-imposed exile.
After only appearing in giant hologram, Snoke finally makes his way to the screen and he looks like another brilliant Andy Serkis motion-capture creation. Given, Snoke looks close enough to human that it should be possible to portray him simply with traditional makeup - like Emperor Palpatine in Return of the Jedi, but if Snoke is truly far taller than a normal human, then that would make more sense. It's difficult to gauge his height with the limited context of the shots he appears in here.
In the fashion of the traditional Star Wars baddie, he's urging Rey to fulfill her destiny and join him. His Force powers are on display here as he levitates Rey as she squirms, clearly in pain. Now that we know Kylo Ren and Rey both go to Crait, that's probably how she got captured again, although, after the way her last fight with Ren went, it's hard to imagine her capture being a simple task, unless she went willingly, which could very well be an indication from the next scene.
A Dangerous Liason
This last scene might be the biggest shocker of the whole thing. In fact, if you string Rey's dialogue together from the beginning of the trailer, it appears as if maybe everything she says could belong to this final scene, making her dialogue "something inside me has always been there, but now it's awake and I need help... I need someone to show me my place in all this" If that is truly all spoken to Kylo Ren, there's a number of potential scenarios.
First, the impression the trailer gives is that maybe Luke's refusal to train her eventually forced her to leave and she's now willing to explore other options. This seems fairly unlikely since she just saw him kill Han Solo, but it's still a possibility. The other is that this scene isn't actually happening. Looking around the background, it appears as if they're in the middle of a burning structure. Her Forceback in The Force Awakens notably ended with Kylo Ren, so what if that happens again here when she sees Luke's temple destroyed and then she has this vision.
Either way, it gives the impression, or hope, even, that Rey and Kylo will find a way to settle their differences and fight on the same side. For who and against what, who knows, but taken in context, it seems very unlikely that the two would actually form any kind of alliance, at least not in this movie.
"This is Not Going to Go the Way You Think"
Jumping off that last point, Luke has a bit of dialogue that almost seems pointed directly at fans: "This is not going to go the way you think," possibly serving as a hat tip to the numerous layers of misdirection going on. Snoke's dialogue could actually all be a part of his interrogation of Rey (instead of split between Ren and Rey), Rey's dialogue may all be directed at Kylo Ren, and there's the significant potential of some dream/vision sequences, all of which cloud the proper order of event. Then, of course, the trailer is lacking any easily identifiable major 3rd act setting or event meaning even the few puzzle pieces we do have don't assemble complete snapshot.
This trailer may show a whole lot more than the last one, but when it comes to actually revealing significant plot elements, it might actually be obscuring the movie's plot even more than the last trailer, meaning some of the movie's biggest reveals may actually end up waiting for a theatrical experience, which is truly exciting.
Be sure to check out the full image gallery below:
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What a packed trailer! Did you have any favorite parts? Anything you think we missed? Let us hear about it in the comments!
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019