After 2015’s The Force Awakens, we were left with many questions about who certain characters are, where they came from and what others have been up to since Return of the Jedi. With The Last Jedi just a couple of months away, Set The Tape approaches some of the unanswered questions and mysteries Star Wars: Episode VIII has to answer.
Who is Snoke?
Ok, I will warn you now. A fair few of these questions are who is…? Snoke (Andy Serkis) made his first appearance in the series in The Force Awakens as the one who corrupted Ben Solo/Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) to the dark side of the force and seems to be in charge of The First Order who have replaced The Empire as the galaxies overseers of evil. He has direct control over General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson) and Kylo Ren.
He is yet to appear in person, only in hologram form, and an overly large one at that leaving us guessing as to his true size, but looking at his appearance it is safe to say he has been through some stuff. We can also only assume that he is a force user and only assume his actual size, although The Last Jedi trailer does offer some hints there.
Snoke has at least been around since at least the time of the Clone Wars as he states he has witnessed the rise and fall of the Empire, and his appearance does suggest he is old. He seems to have been known to at least Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa Solo (Carrie Fisher) pre Ben being turned. Snoke also had control of The Knights of Ren.
Many theories are abound as to who he could be. Some have suggested Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson), others Darth Plagueis, the former master of Palpatine/Sidious although he is thought to be dead, murdered by his apprentice or even The Grand Inquisitor from Rebels. However Serkis has stated Snoke is a completely new and original character – but he would say that.
Who is Rey?
Well we know Rey (Daisy Ridley) was orphaned on Jakku as a child, is strong with the force, has sought and found Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) and is, as of the end of The Force Awakens a great hope for The Resistance. We also know she is strong with the force and the vision she had in Maz Katana’s (Lupita Nyongo) castle certainly suggested some deeper significance to her character. It was also stated by JJ Abrams and others around the release of The Force Awakens that she was deliberately not given a surname.
Like Snoke there are theories as to who she really is, the most prominent of which suggest she is a descendant of a Skywalker or Kenobi.
Who is Finn?
Finn is another without a surname, in fact he has only had his first name for about a fortnight. Again it was suggested his real name and origins were omitted although we do know that he was taken from his family as a child.
The biggest links to past characters are Mace Windu or Lando Calrissian (Billy D Williams) although that could just be putting two and two together and getting five.
What has Luke been up to?
Since Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker has tried to revive the Jedi Order and seen it destroyed by his former pupil and nephew. He then fled. We find out he is on Ahch-To a planet which we think is home to the first ever Jedi temple. When Rey finds him in the final scenes of The Force Awakens we are unsure as to what he has found or learnt during his self imposed exile and has he been communicating with the force ghosts of Anakin, Obi-Wan and Yoda.
How will Carrie Fisher/Leia be written out?
Sadly, Carrie Fisher passed away in late 2016. She had finished filming her parts of The Last Jedi and was scheduled to appear in Episode IX. Since her death, Disney have stated they will not CGI her in to films as they did with Peter Cushing’s Moff Tarkin – and indeed Carrie Fisher’s younger self in Rogue One – so they need to explain how her character exits. Although this may not be until Episode IX.