If I have to read any more posts on Social Media by people who wanted the same old Luke Skywalker from Return of the Jedi I may have to vomit.
I don’t think I saw or heard one complaint about how the characters of Han and Leia had developed from the Original Trilogy to the Sequel Trilogy.
But as soon as you get a Luke Skywalker who has gone through some character development between the two trilogy’s then everyone looses their minds.
If we got Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker then what would the point be of having the character return. Same old, same old doesn’t work over 30 years.
If you asked any of the #notmylukeskywalker wingers who had grown up with the films from 1977 until now and asked them if they were the same person now as they were 30 years ago I guarantee they would say ‘no’. Ask them why and you’ll be told that life experience has changed them in some way.
Then why can’t the same happen for a fictional character?
I can wait for the answer.
Is it because of the Legends/Canon debate? Were people really expecting the Luke of the EU? The one who at one point lived in a castle on Coruscant and walked around naked in front of Han being all weird like in ‘The Approaching Storm’? Or the Luke Skywalker who was sat having holiday on a Coruscant resort as the local security come to arrest him in the middle of the Yuuzahn Vong conflict only for him to throw some Peter Parker style quips? Because for me, that’s #notmylukeskywalker.
When I watched The Last Jedi I loved the Luke character. The progression was believable especially after we get the back story of the Luke/Ben altercation that led to Ben destroying Luke’s Training Temple.
I’m not going to recount the events of the end of the film, you’re reading a Star Wars blog, you probably already know, but here’s how it affected me.
As I left the cinema, at almost 3am carrying the two free posters that were given out after the screening I walked to my car. For the whole five minute walk all I could think was ‘I don’t believe it. What just happened?’
The drive home passed me by in a blur, I’m still surprised I didn’t run a red light or something. All I could think about was Luke’s passing.
The next morning, my wife asked me firstly, if I enjoyed it. I said that I didn’t know. Then she asked me to tell her what happens in the film. So over the next hour or so (stopping and starting whilst doing other stuff) I recounted The Last Jedi.
When I got to the Luke and Leia scene on Crait I broke, yes I cried. My wife told me to ‘man up’. I then told her about the death scene and it happened again. It turns out that reliving the story allowed me to essentially come to terms with the loss of my childhood hero. And you know what, it felt right. We got Luke’s story. He’s passed the Jedi mantle on to Rey.
I saw it again that afternoon with my Dad, I grieved. I let it all out in that screening and at no point did I even think that the character of Luke had been used in a wrong way.
Then the click-bait hash-tag hate mongering started. Based on something Mark Hamill said in the previous April at Celebration 2017 about fundamentally disagreeing with Rian Johnson’s take on the character and then admitting that he (Mark Hamill) was wrong.
At work the next day I listened to a few podcasts where the film was discussed, one of which was an episode of Steele Wars where the host, Steele Saunders and his wife Jaqueline discussed the film in the car on the way to the airport (Steele Wars Episode 155: In the Car The Last Jedi SPOILER reaction with Jaqueline) where, when asked what his favourite moment of the film was, Steele said, after starting to cry (and mocking himself for crying),
“My highest point is that Luke Skywalker came back and was a hero.”
I don’t think I could put it better myself, but in memory of our favourite Jedi Master let’s set Twitter ablaze with a new hash-tag
Check out Steele Saunders’ Steele Wars Podcast HERE