By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
The second trailer to Star Wars: The Force Awakens is certainly signalling the passing of the lightsaber. Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) narrates this second piece by saying, “The Force is strong in my family. My father has it, I have it, my sister has it (whereupon Luke gives his original lightsaber away to who may be Leia) … you have that power too.” Just who is it? There’s no direct image to indicate exactly who, but it may well be with the Poe (Oscar Isaac), the X-wing pilot or Rey (Daisy Ridley), the lady running in the foreground. Usually, when constructing a trailer, it’s best to have the images flow with the text. When the trailer is meant to tease, it should not reveal exactly what’s going on, but instead suggest one of a few possibilities to have watchers guessing.
If the editors and J.J. Abrams are clever, it’ll be neither of the above, and just who is in the family bloodline has not been revealed yet. In the Expanded Universe created by Dark Horse Comics and various authors, Han and Leia are married, and they have children: Jaina, Jacen and Anakin. When the Walt Disney company acquired the franchise, they declared all of that as “Legends,” or rather an alternate universe that’s no longer considered canon. To be fair, to work the new film based on what’s created with no consortium would have led to a less than stellar screenplay, and to wonder what’s new, or if Poe or Rey are related to the Skywalker family is more exciting.
But as for what this new trailer reveals: The Empire is set to rise from the ashes anew. The first shot of a desert, presumably Tatooine (update: actually, the planet Jakku as revealed during Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim, California), where a dilapidated X-wing and Imperial Destroyer are seen suggests the war did not finish easy on one planet. It spread out through most of the galaxy as surviving loyalists to the Emperor tried to carve out their own place to survive. As they finally manage to become one large group united under a new ruler, perhaps a new Sith lord, the New Republic will have to deal with this threat. When considering these two trailers suggest that there is a new disturbance in The Force, just what the Dark Side is up to is not going to be good.
The last bit with Han and Chewie together felt more like fan service than an actual bit from the movie. The only tell-tale sign of who is to meet first might be with Rey extending a hand of friendship to Finn (John Boyega), a Stormtrooper who seems to have developed a moral compass, if this new trailer is any indication. He doesn’t like where this new Empire is going. When there’s shades of Nazism is being painted on the sequences with the Stormtroopers over a flag, that feeling can not be helped.
Hopefully by a fourth trailer’s end, a better idea of the story will emerge. So far, these montages only reveal a trio of unlikely heroes crossing paths as they face this new threat that’s getting ready to plague the galaxy.