Who Is “The Last Jedi”: Official Title Announced for Episode VIII

January 23, 2017 – Lucasfilm announced today the official title of the next episode of the Skywalker saga: Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

Scheduled for release on Dec. 15th, 2017, the eighth episode is written and directed by Rian Johnson, produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Ram Bergman, and executive produced by J.J. Abrams, Jason McGatlin, and Tom Karnowski.

Some quick observations about the official title:

● Gone is the sequential numbering (“Episode VIII”) which was traditionally used in past Star Wars movies. For purposes of shorthand reference, however, we will occasionally still refer to the film as “Episode VIII” or “Ep. VIII”.

● The red-black-white logo is a departure from the traditional gold or yellow lettering of Star Wars. Black and red are used extensively by the First Order. In our world, the color combination of red-black-white can be traced as far back as ancient Egypt. In more modern times, the Satanic religion has used the colors black and red.

Anthropologists note that across most cultures, humans perceive black, white and red foremost among all colors for symbolic purposes. More discussion HERE.

● Following the release of The Force Awakens, actors John Boyega and Carrie Fisher had reported that the script for Episode VIII was “darker”. The Last Jedi will not be a feel-good movie at all as it sets the stage for a final confrontation in Episode IX.

● So what does the title mean? Who or what is “the Last Jedi”? At first glance, most fans would probably think that the title refers to Luke Skywalker. With the First Order ascendant and Luke in seclusion and hiding, that guess would seem reasonable.

But what if the title refers to someone or something else? Our favorite Jedi hero cannot live forever, and like his masters and trainers who have passed before, Luke too must eventually die.

Alec Guinness (born 1914) was 63 years old when Star Wars: A New Hope debuted in 1977. Mark Hamill (born 1951) is now 65 years old. In other words, Luke “the young farmboy” is now older than “that old wizzard”. Let that fact sink in.

The label “the Last Jedi” could well pass to another character. A newly-trained Rey, perhaps? A redeemed Kylo Ren, who must bring balance to the Force? A third character we have yet to learn of?

Photo Credit: Blizzard Force Customs

Photo Credit: Blizzard Force Customs

Another possibility is that Luke is indeed the last and final Jedi, and all the Jedi arts and secrets will perish with him. This does not mean, however, that the First Order will have prevailed. A good team of writers could re-order the galaxy and turn the Force on its head.

For there to be “balance” in the Force, this must mean that neither the Jedi nor the Sith, that neither the Light side nor the Dark, can remain supreme. Similar to the yin and yang of our world, the two opposing sides need each other in order to exist. But their co-existence also means constant conflict and never-ending battles.

Thus the paradox. The Jedi can never destroy the Sith, and hence the First Order, without undermining their philosophical pursuit of balance.

Another twist: What if the Jedi are evil, from a certain point of view? Others have speculated that the Jedi are the true villains of the galaxy, driving this ceaseless conflict. (Google “what if the Jedi are evil” or “Jedi are bad guys” and you will see numerous articles on this topic.)

If this new truth suddenly dawns on Luke Skywalker, his biggest contribution could be his own voluntary demise. Such a sacrifice would give deeper meaning to the title, “the Last Jedi”.


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