The Last Jedi | 30 Questions Finally Answered
For a film that was supposed to answer a number of lingering questions, The Last Jedi sure conjured many of its very own. But thanks to the Lucasfilm Story Group and its various visual dictionaries, we finally know what the Master Codebreaker was doing on Canto Bight, why Resistance bombs “fell” in space, what Luke Skywalker actually did during his self-imposed exile, and much, much more. I'm Matt from Inside Star Wars, and here are 30 Questions From The Last Jedi Finally Answered.
Number 30. How the First Order Gained More Power Than the Resistance
I can't have been the only one who was utterly perplexed by the opening line of the opening crawl. The First Order reigns? Wait, what? I thought Starkiller Base went kaboom?! Apparently, they had home insurance or something. Seriously, though, how did the First Order go from losing a battle to winning the war within minutes? Well, that useless New Republic. That's how! Not only was its massively reduced fleet, top military commanders, and entire Senate wiped out in the blink of an eye, but its already limited foothold on the galaxy, at least compared to the Galactic Empire, left those remaining systems open to attack. And as for the Resistance, it was never the largest faction to begin with. Without the backing of the New Republic, it was equivalent to... I don't know... Say a group of dudes just hanging around the Millennium Falcon. Oh, wait...
Number 29. Why First Order Command Decks Were Soaked in Red
Sticking with the First Order, did you happen to notice the command decks of the Fulminatrix Dreadnought were distinctly red? Assuming you have two functioning eye balls, of course you did! The obvious reason for such mood lighting, you ask? Why the First Order was super evil, so therefore the red perfectly symbolised its bloodthirsty nature... Duh! Except Star Wars: The Last Jedi: The Visual Dictionary gives us a very different answer:
“The command decks of the Dreadnought are bathed in dim red lighting. This helps maintain the gunnery crews' night vision as they switch between their targetting scopes and visual scans of the surrounding region of space.”
Number 28. Where the Resistance Pilots Disappeared to
Like its predecessor, the Resistance possessed more pilots than it did spacecraft. This is why many fighter aces served as lifeboat and transport pilots during the escape from D'Qar instead of, you know, flying X-wings. Yet Snap Wexley and many more of the individuals who joined Poe Dameron in the Battle of Starkiller Base were nowhere to be seen in the Resistance's greatest time of need. Weird, right? But according to the aforementioned visual dictionary, they were all either assigned on other missions or stationed at different evacuation points. Mystery solved!
Number 27. How the Resistance Improved A-wings
The zippy RZ-1 proved an invaluable commodity during the Galactic Civil War. And because the Resistance was essentially Rebel Alliance 2.0, you know it was itching at the bit to reuse the A-wing. The definition of insanity, though, is doing the same thing time and time again and expecting different results. Simply recreating the craft wasn't enough. It had to improve upon its weaknesses. A sleeker, longer frame for improved stability and speed, more powerful sensors for faster data collection, upgraded jammers to impede detection, and redesigned swivel mounts that prevented jamming when targetting rearward spacecraft – all of these upgrades made the RZ-2 much more than a copycat fighter. It would have easily defeated its predecessor without much thought.
Number 26. Why Resistance Bombs Fell in Space
Ah yes, the controversial “falling” explosives. I've never really understood this critique, if I'm being totally honest. Firstly, nothing in Star Wars makes scientific sense, and nor should it! It's an entirely different galaxy from our own, filled with space wizards and planet-destroying superweapons. It's not supposed to be taken all too seriously. Secondly, like George Lucas before him, Rian Johnson wasn't the first to draw inspiration from World War II, even if it didn't make much tactical sense or seemingly defied the laws of gravity. And thirdly, not that I'm an astrophysicist or anything, but wouldn't it make sense for an object in space to continue along the trajectory in which it was pushed, only stopping upon contact with another? Not that any of this really matters, of course, given the official lore explanation provided by the Lucasfilm Story Group:
“Bombs don't technically “drop” in microgravity, but are impelled from their racks by sequenced electromagnetic plates in the clip. The bombs are then drawn magnetically to their unfortunate targets.”
Number 25. Why the Resistance Didn't Use Y-Wings
Thanks to the final trailer for The rise of Skywalker, I'm about to eat my words. Thanks, Lucasfilm! But Y-wings in the sequel trilogy do not make any sense. Dating back to the Clone Wars, they were already old and battered by the time of the Galactic Civil War, let alone the First Order-Resistance conflict. And sure, as we've already covered, the Resistance loved remaking Rebel spacecraft. But the MG-100 StarFortress was far more deadly. I mean, a single payload could destroy an entire First Order Dreadnought. A single Y-wing, on the other hand, wouldn't even leave a scratch. Don't at me.
Number 24. Why the Raddus Left Some Evacuees
Let's be honest, The Last Jedi was just one elongated chase scene. The entire intro alone, for crying out loud, was dedicated to the evacuation of D'Qar. So with these two factors in mind, you would have thought no detail of the Resistance's escape would go amiss. Thankfully, the reason why the Raddus left some evacuees to their own ships, despite having more than enough room to house them, is easy to explain. Resistance protocol was never to amass all assets, military or otherwise, into a single target. This not only reduced the organisation's losses at any one time, but ensured its survival and longevity.
Number 23. The Science Behind Hyperspace Tracking
When it came to re-imagining lore or introducing entirely new concepts, The Last Jedi did not hold back. The Holdo Manoeuvre, Luke Skywalker's astral projection, the Force bridge between Rey and Kylo Ren – I mean, the list just goes on and on. And that's not even mentioning hyperspace tracking, a technique I still don't quite understand even with paragraphs of sci-fi mumbo jumbo in front of me. I will, however, try my best to break it all down. So basically, the First Order combined technological advances with brute-force data crunching to track down its enemies. Huge shipboard computer arrays, which were linked in a localised hyperspace field, sifted through centuries of combat reports and astrogation data at unimaginable speeds. Therefore, the trillions of potential destinations of a target's last known trajectory could be assessed in the blink of an eye. Combine all of these factors and you have yourself an enemy tied in a knot at the end of a string. Did you get all of that? I sure hope so!
Number 22. How the Supremacy Evaded Detection
13,239.68 metres long, 60,542.68 metres wide, 3,975.35 metres tall, and a capacity for 2.225 million crew members – the sheer scale of Supreme Leader Snoke's flagship cannot be understated. Even in a galaxy over 100,000 light years in scale, the Supremacy and its construction would have been incredibly difficult to mask or in some way suppress. So the fact it was hidden away in the deepest, darkest depths of the Unknown Regions should come as no real surprise. However, its immense sensor signature was further disguised thanks to nearby, highly energetic stars – something you were probably unaware of.
Number 21. Why Snoke Wore Slippers
Okay, so this might not be the most serious or pertinent of questions. But hey, some of you out there are bound to have asked yourselves why such a powerful and badass Force-user kicked around in a night gown and some not so badass slippers. So why on Earth did Angry Mace Windu choose to live his mysterious life like he was constantly unemployed? Did he simply think it was a good look? Well, as it turns out, Snoke wore his golden garments purely out of comfort. Apparently malformed zygoma, horrific scars, and a body more bent than Count Dooku's lightsaber hilt left him in a tremendous amount of pain. Who would have thunk it?!
Number 20. What Snoke's Blue-Robed Pals Did and Were
As we've already established, Supreme Leader Snoke had some pretty awesome garments. What we've not touched upon, however, is his equally awesome red and blue pals. The former, of course, are the Elite Praetorian Guard. But what about the latter, I hear you cry? Well, those dudes are simply giant plums... I'm only kidding. They were actually alien navigators who originated in the Unknown Regions – an area of space Snoke was all too familiar with. Not only were these guys and their ancient hyperspace trails responsible for helping Imperial survivors escape an almost certain death, but they also designed the oculus viewing scope seen in their master's throne room. You know, the device Snoke used to one up Emperor Palpatine. Who merely uses windows to display the pearl of their enemy, am I right?!
Number 19. Where Vader's Helmet Disappeared To
Darth Vader's charred helmet... Oh, yeah! That's a thing! Given Kylo's hatred for headwear, maybe it was for the best the Sith souvenir didn't randomly appear in The Last Jedi. But given its significant role only a film prior, its absence did seem a bit weird, didn't it? The real-life explanation is thus: to continue Ren's character arc, the helmet would have been seen as a backward step. Hell, maybe Rian Johnson simply forgot. That is also an alarming possibility. In-universe, though, what is left of Vader's battered headpiece was left aboard the Finalizer. Perhaps we'll see it again once Ren recovers from his failures... We're definitely not seeing it again, are we?
Number 18. What Chewbacca Did on Ahch-To
Aside from eating Porgs, am I right?! Seriously, though, Chewbacca must have had a ton of time on his hands, or I guess paws, while Rey did Jedi things on Ahch-To. So what did the so-called “walking carpet” do on the mystical island? Well, he mostly stuck to the Millennium Falcon, forever tinkering with the stubborn freighter. But thanks to Chewie and the Porgs, a young reader's book, not the name of my next band, we know he occasionally left the Falcon to explore his surroundings. In fact, he tried time and time again to find food, only to fail and/or accidentally catch himself some Porgs. Feeling sorry for the small birds, however, and I mean, how could you not? They're the cutest things to ever scare my wallet! They worked together to find a hidden lake filled with as much fish as they could possibly stomach. Feasting, playing, and even challenging one another to games of holochess, this is the type of s*** young Star Wars fans love, apparently. It also explains why a handful of Porgs stayed aboard the Millennium Falcon. No, they never sneaked on but were instead invited by Chewbacca after becoming friends. Awww. I'm going to stop now before I become violently ill.
Number 17. What Luke Skywalker Actually Did on Ahch-To
Luke Skywalker, the cheery chap, ventured to Ahch-To with only one goal in mind... To harvest as much green milk as humanely possible! Of course, I'm only joking. He actually selected the long-forgotten world as his final resting place – which he eventually fulfilled in the dying light of a binary sunset. However, his self-imposed exile and the specific activities he performed throughout were far less documented than his final, epic duel with Kylo Ren. So, let's correct that. Upon arrival on Ahch-To, Skywalker wasted very little time in severing his connection with the Force. But to combat the watery world's unpredictable weather and harsh thunderstorms, he slapped an S-foil from his X-wing onto an ancient, preexisting hovel and called it home. From there, he lived the rest of his days much like his early years on Tatooine, spearfishing for the likes of fingerlip garpons, twinfin hyacanders and spetan channelfish, intricately weaving weatherproof garments, lighting necessary fires, and – of course – milking thala-sirens! Delicious...
Number 16. Why DJ Was Already in Prison
So let me get this straight, in order to temporarily disable the Supremacy's hyperspace tracking module, Finn and Rose needed to hire the one and only person in the entire galaxy on Maz Kanata's level? Yet when they were later arrested before even reaching him, they wound up in the exact same jail cell as DJ, another supremely skilled hacker who could easily bust them out? It's all a bit coincidental, isn't it? But you came here for in-universe answers, not some guy on the internet complaining about contrived plot points. “Don't Join”, you see, purposefully arranged his own arrests for petty crimes as jail was the only place he could sleep without being disturbed by the Canto Bight Police Department. You could imagine him being a high priority target to local authorities.
Number 15. Who the Libertine Belonged To
The Libertine, or as I like to call it, the Deus Ex Machina, was perhaps more interesting than the entire Canto Bight sequence. For one, it belonged to someone profiting from both sides of the First Order-Resistance conflict. Smart guy. I mean, what an ass! And two, it showed both sides were just as bad as each other. In war, there are no good guys. As it turns out, the owner whose name I'm about to butcher even in typing it, Korfé Bennux-Ai, was born into wealth on Celanon, becoming a top-ranking manager for the Sienar-Jaemus corporation. He made his fortune from selling starfighters that failed to meet the First Order's stringent quality checks to nervous star systems expecting a fight. His most recent deal, one with Zygerrian slavers, failed to materialise. So Korfé diverted his pilots to Cantonica for a restorative night drinking and gambling. Little did he know that the sneaky, sneaky DJ would only add to his sorrows by stealing the Deus Ex Machina. Sucks to be a billionaire!
Number 14. What the Master Codebreaker Was Doing on Canto Bight
From one “Master Codebreaker” to another, this particular gentlemen was just as mysterious as Rian Johnson's reasoning for including him in the bloody script! So secretive was his existence, in fact, that only those capable of bypassing a quantum-spread biohexacrypt code could uncover his personal information and thus become the new Master Codebreaker. As of The Last Jedi, no one had even come close. Perhaps he ventured to Canto Bight to find himself a new challenge, if not in the many intellectual beings he surrounded himself with, then in the various games of chance where his odds of success were less guaranteed. Interestingly, his companion, who only went by the name “Lovey”, carefully studied him in hopes of usurping his title.
Number 13. Why Holdo Kept a Certain Secret
Back in December 2017, I made a video defending Vice Admiral Holdo's bizarre decision to withhold the Resistance plan. Her actions were indefensible. But that didn't stop me from seeing the argument from her point of view... For which I was called a Disney shill. To be honest, I wish I was a shill. I'd be making bank right now! Anyway, in the video, I made three main points. Take them for what they are. Firstly, Holdo was transferred from a craft where she and her staff had complete trust. Suddenly surrounded by strangers, she sought to carry out Leia's wishes as effectively and efficiently as possible, limiting the flow of information to a need-to-know basis. Secondly, she had no idea who she could trust and who she could not. The idea of spreading a plan that could have split an already divided Resistance didn't seem very smart, not to mention anyone desperate enough could have easily swapped secrets to the First Order for safe passage off ship. And thirdly, the commander acted nothing like his rank would suggest. He was reckless, stubborn, and worst of all, untrustworthy. I mean, he outright defied Leia's orders to destroy a First Order dreadnought, an act which killed dozens of pilots and gunners. Poe didn't really help himself, did he? Holdo still sucks, though.
Number 12. Why the Holdo Manoeuvre Wasn't Used More Often
From one of the worst parts of the movie to perhaps the greatest scene in Star Wars history. The sequence where Holdo jumped through hyperspace, destroying the Supremacy and most of the First Order's fleet in the process, was sensational. I still remember the feeling of awe among the audience I was sitting with as we gazed at this spectacle. You could hear a pin drop! As cool as this was, though, it raised a couple of questions. Mainly, why we hadn't seen such a manoeuvre, at all, in any form. It certainly would have made blowing up either Death Star a tad easier. But it's rarity is something I've always defended. I mean, you'd have to be pretty desperate to destroy you and your entire ship just to immobilise the enemy. Both the Rebel Alliance and the Resistance valued life, knowing just one pilot or soldier could make all the difference. They didn't exactly have infinite resources. Oh, yeah, think about the money! How inefficient must it be to build spacecraft, equip them with hyperdrives, only to launch them into the opposition's forces? Doing this with small craft would be pointless. An A-wing, for example, wouldn't even scratch the surface of Starkiller Base. So all your left with is risking your capital ships on the off chance you make a mark. What if you miss?! This technique just doesn't make any sense unless it's a last-ditch effort. Even then, the risks outweigh the positives. Maybe we'll get an in-universe answer at some point. But for the time being, logic is all we have.
Number 11. How Captain Phasma Escaped From Starkiller Base
Captain Phasma is the Kenny of the Star Wars universe. She dies every movie she's in, then miraculously reappears with a little more screen time the next, only to swiftly die once more. It's a vicious cycle. But how did it all start, I hear none of you ask? Well, let's venture back to the climax of Episode VII. Stuck in the trash compactor of Starkiller Base, Captain Phasma used her ingenuity to escape. In other words, Finn forgot to remove the cannister of explosive liquid from her belt. Rookie mistake. Having blown her way to freedom, she went back to the very console she lowered the shields of Starkiller Base with, not to reminisce, but to frame someone else for the treachery. She then got as far away from the dying planet as she could, knowing no one would ever think she was a dirty little turncoat. Good stuff!
Number 10. Why the Rebellion Hastily Fled Crait
The former Rebel base on Crait certainly looked hastily fled, what with the remaining artillery emplacements, bits and bobs of technology, and of course, the rickety ski speeders. The reason for such a hurried abandonment is rather tragic... It was Captain Phasma! I'm only kidding, although it does involve treachery! You see, a traitorous ally alerted to their location an elite Imperial unit – SCAR Squadron, to be exact. Now, SCAR Squadron wasn't one to be messed with. Not only would it leave you with scars... Ha, do you get it?! Each member specialised in different tactics, leaving no visible weakness. Also, the element of surprise was entirely lost. Why bother finishing construction of a “secret base” when the Galactic Empire already knew its location? What a waste of time.
Number 09. What Snowtroopers Were Doing on a Salt Planet
It doesn't take a genius to work out that snowtroopers would be best deployed in wintery conditions. Crait, of course, looked nothing like the ice planets Hoth or Starkiller Base. However, it was a temperate world. Its salt coating and crystalline structure, its intense surface glare and low skid resistance, made it more akin to the aforementioned worlds than you probably realised. Moral of the story? Don't judge a book by its cover... Or, I guess, a planet by its surface!
Number 08. Why No One Answered the Resistance Distress Call
In the final trailer for The Rise of Skywalker, we can see the Resistance has found some friends – a LOT of friends. More friends than I can even fathom. God, I'm so alone. It's good to see they finally have allies, though. They weren't exactly swimming in them in The Last Jedi. If you remember, no one even answered their distress call. Weird, right? We know multiple points in the galaxy received it, Lieutenant Connix said as much. Yet not a single soul responded. That's because – drum roll please – the First Order ruled the galaxy. Yes, as we've already covered, the Resistance had as much ownership of the galaxy as I do friends. So the people they contacted were all under the faction's thumb and not exactly in a position to mount a rebellion! That must change in The Rise of Skywalker.
Number 07. Why Resistance Blaster Bolts Changed From Blue to Red
This next point is more of an easter egg than it is a question. But for those more eagle-eyed among us, you may have noticed the blaster bolt colour of Resistance weapons on Crait changed from red, their normal colour, to blue. This tiny attention to detail has everything to do with the base's Rebel origins. It's armouries, you see, were stockpiled with Rebellion-era ammo. And because the majority of Resistance soldiers used outdated EL-16 rifles, the weapons cartridges simply clicked into place. Bish bash bosh, blue is the new red... Copyright it, Netflix!
Number 06. How the First Order Improved AT-ATs and AT-STs
We've already covered how the Rebel Alliance improved A-wings, so let's now do the same with First Order AT-ATs and AT-STs. Out of the two, the All Terrain Armoured Transport needed the most improvement. See the Battle of Hoth for more details. So to avoid the same mistakes, i.e being punked by some snowspeeders, each were given reinforced shin armour, improved targetting sensors, speedier weapon recharge rates, and toughened front toes, you know, for smashing obstacles. The All Terrain Scout Transport, on the other hand, had improved gyroscopic systems for greater balance. Both designs were also topped off with materials lighter than Galactic Civil-war era armour but just as strong. More armour, therefore, could be layered on each walker without increasing their weight. And that, ladies and gentleman, is how you copy someone's homework but switch around a couple of sentences to not make it too obvious!
Number 05. If Leia Knew Luke Was a Force Ghost
One of the more successful subverting of expectations was Luke's reveal as a Force projection. He wasn't actually present on Crait. Mind = blown! But what about everything that happened just before this incredible reveal? How did Leia handle non-physical dice? Did she even know her brother was basically the embodiment of a Skype call?! Well, according to Mark Hamill, yes. If you rewatch their final scene together, Leia gives Luke a subtle, revealing glance when he hands her the dice. She can't possibly fathom how he came to possess such an heirloom, and this is precisely the moment, as far as Hamill is concerned, she finally clicks. The fact they're both Force-sensitive too bolsters this theory. But why, then, did Kylo not notice this deception. He was blinded by rage, maybe? Sure. Let's go with that.
Number 04. Why Luke Didn't Use His Green Lightsaber
Sticking with Skype call Skywalker, it did seem weird, didn't it, that he never used his green lightsaber? Not only did he achieve a slew of iconic feats with his green-bladed weapon, he hadn't even seen his father's lightsaber in over thirty years. Did he just prefer the colour blue? Maybe he was a Manchester City fan? Or was he simply feeling a bit nostalgic while projecting himself onto Crait? Neither, apparently! Rian Johnson, in an interview with IGN, revealed his slightly different viewpoint:
"[Luke] is basically tailoring this projection to have maximum effect on Kylo. He knows that Kylo’s Achilles heel is his rage, and so that’s why he kind of makes himself look younger, the way Kylo would’ve last seen him in their confrontation at the temple, and that’s why he decided to bring Kylo’s grandfather’s lightsaber down there - the lightsaber that Kylo screamed at Rey, ‘that’s mine, that belongs to me.’"
So, wait, Luke was just being a massive troll? I think I might like his character more now. What a ledge!
Number 03. Why Luke Skywalker Died
Disney loves breaking our hearts, doesn't it? I mean, why must one of the Original Trilogy trio die in each of the sequel films? What, is Harrison Ford too expensive these days? Whatevs. I just hope Leia can walk off into the sunset in The Rise of Skywalker. Her character doesn't deserve anything less! Where was I? Oh, yeah. Luke Skywalker passed away because... Reasons. He disappeared, mechanical hand and all, because... Reasons. No joke, I was a bit taken aback when he became one with the Force. It just seemed a bit random. He wasn't exactly struck down by a lightsaber blade, was he? I guess the stress of projecting his entire self to the other side of the galaxy for a prolonged period of time really took it out him. Once again, though, Mark Hamill has his own answer:
“The Force Killed Luke. You have to acknowledge the irony in his fate. Almost like an addict that kicked his habit cold-turkey, remained lean for decades, only to re-use just once and then, tragically, overdoses.”
So there you go, kids. Don't take any of that nasty Force stuff. It will mess you up!
Number 02. Why Poe Met Rey... Twice!
Poe and Rey are two of the sequel trilogy's main characters. Alongside Finn, they comprise a trifecta of protagonists not too dissimilar to Luke, Leia and Han. It's hard to believe, then, that Poe and Rey only met one another in the dying minutes of The Last Jedi. I suppose the hurried evacuation of D'Qar had something to do with it, but still! To wait this long for two major good guys to come together is unheard of, really. Even more bizarre is that fact they've already met! No, you didn't just mishear me. This was their second encounter. Readers of the novelisation for The Force Awakens, you see, have already read the following passage:
“Cheers and spontaneous embraces filled the room with so much joy that no one paid attention to who was hugging what representative of whichever species. Rey and Poe were not excluded, though their sudden, tight clinch of shared excitement led to a moment of mutual awkwardness.
'Uh, hi,' the pilot mumbled. 'I'm Poe.'
She nodded slowly, searching his face and finding that she liked it. 'I recognise the name. So you're Poe. Poe Dameron, the X-wing pilot. I'm Rey.'
'I know.' He smiled back, a little more at ease. 'Nice to meet you.'”
See?! I'm not going mad! The reason for Rian Johnson's complete disregard of this novelisation is rather simple. Novelisations are not the be-all and end-all. In fact, they are considered to be beneath the films, at least when it comes to Star Wars canon. In Johnson's eyes, the meeting between Rey and Poe deserved to be shown on-screen, not in a novelisation only a fraction of the audience will ever read.
Number 01. The Identity of Broomstick Boy
Fun fact: “Broomstick Boy” is not actually called “Broomstick Boy.” Who would have thought? Yes, the little dude at the end of The Last Jedi, who used his Force powers out in the open and completely unnecessarily it probably made Yoda turn in his grave (Oh wait, he's on Ahch-To setting trees on fire. Never mind), Temiri Blagg has as rich and detailed a backstory as some of the most renown characters in all of Star Wars. Also, I'm lying. What we do know comes directly from the film itself – the fact he's a street urchin who cared for Fathiers, he could lift broomsticks from a distance, and he dreamed of a better life among the stars. Perhaps his character will be expanded upon in The Rise of Skywalker or a future comic book or novel. Then again, he could easily just disappear into obscurity – like the views for Inside Star Wars! RIP.
Have any more questions about The Last Jedi? Let me know in the comments below!