The Star Wars Episode I trailer debuted in 1999 when I was twelve years old. My parents taped the unveiling on the news; that first scene with mysterious Gungan warriors emerging from dense fog will forever be seared in my mind. I grew more excited as I took in the trailer’s delicious details: a tattooed Sith wielding a double-bladed lightsaber, the hectic Tatooine pod race, a seemingly formidable droid army, and the small boy who’d eventually transform into the Sith Lord himself, Darth Vader!
Episode I’s trailer was the first to literally overwhelm me with excitement. That excitement held me tight up until the film’s release, at which point I moved into disppointment’s much colder embrace. To quote a wise Jedi Master: Jar Jar Binks and midichlorians do not a great Star Wars movie make. I experienced that same overwhelming 12-year old’s sense of awe during each of a dozen viewings of the new Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens trailer. Having read numerous trailer breakdowns, I don’t think adding my voice to those analyses will add any mind-blowing new insights. But the trailer left with me with more questions than the original Epsiode 1 trailer ever did, so please humor my inner 12-year old as he leaps headfirst into Star Wars trailer bliss.
Who found Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber? Last time Luke gripped His father’s lightsaber, it was literally separated from him and sent tumbling down Cloud City’s abyss. So the obvious question is: Who discovered it down there? Was it discovered by accident, or did someone with an agenda go looking for it? And who would have known its location? Darth Vader and Luke were this family feud’s only visible participants. Does the Force want the lightsaber to be discovered, and if that’s the case what role will its discovery play in the film? I personally think the lightsaber will end up in another Skywalker decendent’s hands – hopefully he or she just doesn’t lose one of theirs.
What are the Resitance and the First Order? It’s official – the former Rebel Alliance has become The Resistance, and the Empire (or at least certain remnants) formed the First Order. Simply judging by the name, it doesn’t appear the Rebels completely toppled the Galactic Empire. Perhaps both sides fought to a stalemate after the Battle of Endor, and the two super powers left one another alone in some type of galactic cold war. Or maybe the Empire was scattered across the stars, and the First Order is an attempt to realign the disparate forces? Tough to tell, but 30 years is a long time for one side to not have gained an upper hand over their foe.
Are stormtroopers finally dangerous? There’s no denying stormtroopers were useless cannon fodder in the original trilogy. Sure, they crushed the Rebel base on Hoth (probably due more to the AT-ATs than their sharpshooting skills), but losing to Ewoks was their most embarrassing defeat. The new First Order stormtroopers at least appear intimidating, but it remains to be see how dangerous they actually are. New varients seem especially ruthless, particularly the flamethrower troopers. And Captain Phasma, whether a stormtrooper or some sort of special forces soldier, looks to be this film’s Boba Fett – mysterious, dangerous, and pretty awesome looking to boot!
Where’s the Millennium Falcon been? The trailer’s final scene shows Han Solo and Chewbacca reuniting with their baby, the Falcon. If that’s the case, what in the galaxy far, far away happened to the ship that famously made the Kessel run in less than 12 parsecs? My theory: Han’s been fulfilling his role as a Rebel/Resistance General with Chewbacca by his side and they’ve been hunting down Imperial remnants. But if that is the case, how’d they lose the Millennium Falcon? Did Han lose it during a sabaac game? Did someone take it for a joy ride and never return it? Did he replace the Falcon with what he thought was a better ship? We’ll obviously find out, but it’s nice to see the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy will reprise its role in Episode VII.
Where are all the aliens and creatures hiding? Star Wars isn’t Star Wars without exotic aliens and creatures. Who doesn’t remember the cantina scene in A New Hope? All those aliens seemed like they had a story to share, and I remember wanting to learn each and every one (thanks, Tales from Mos Eisley Cantina). We know they’ll be in the film, and we’ve already met BB-8 while getting a glimpse of everyone’s favorite Wookie, too. But what new, crazy, outlandish aliens will we see in Episode VII? Will they be as memorable as Yoda, or the wampa, or the space slug, or the Sarlacc Pit? December cannot get here fast enough, and I for one cannot wait to get all my Episode VII questions answered! Update: Vanity Fair’s recent profile provided our first good look at some of the new aliens and creatures!
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