Han Solo may be my favorite character, but I’m also a fan of Luke Skywalker, and I have a hard time believing that this man who was once the new hope for the galaxy has just given up and turned his back on his family, his friends, and the Republic. No, Luke is better than this and he must have a plan. There must be a method to his madness.
If Luke, Yoda, and Obi-Wan were sitting in a Cantina, and Luke was relating to them his tragic tale, I can’t help but feel that their response would be, “been there. Done that. Man-up and grow a pair.” After all, they suffered through the rise of the Empire and the fall of both the Jedi Order and the Republic.
Before Yoda died and became one with the Force, he charged Luke with restoring the Jedi Order. He tells Luke, “…when gone am I the last of the Jedi will you be. Luke, the Force runs strong in your family. Pass on what you have learned, Luke.”
That’s a pretty big burden to put on Luke’s shoulders, and he already had a lot on his plate at the time. Nothing like going to your boss to brief him on that status of your big project, which has reached a critical point, and he sits there and gives you the next big project, which by the way, is equally important, and is dependent upon the success of the current project. Been there and done that myself. Granted, Yoda was dying, so he didn’t have much of a choice, but still.
This was a clear mandate, and like the tasks Luke was given before, he accepted the burden and attempted to train a new generation of Jedi. According to Han, after Kylo Ren destroyed it all, “Luke felt responsible. He Just walked away from everything.” Did Luke just walk away, or did he have something else in mind?
Despite his failure to restore the Jedi Order, people still believe in him. His sister and others, such as Lor San Tekka still view him as a beacon of hope and the key to restoring peace to the galaxy. Even with the new Jedi defeated and Luke in exile, the First Order views him as a threat, and are as desperate to find him as the Resistance.
Both Yoda and Obi-Wan went into exile, but they didn’t just fade away. Obi-Wan went to Tatooine to watch over and protect Luke, and Yoda went to Dagobah where he was able to keep tabs on Luke; Yoda says to Obi-Wan, “This one a long time have I watched.”
If Luke is taking himself out of the game, why not do it permanently and extinguish any spark of hope from those who would count on him to restore peace?
Luke retreated to the world of Ach-To, the rumored site of the first Jedi temple. Why seek out such an important historical monument if you are just trying to run and hide? Why leave a hidden map if you didn’t want to be found? If Yoda could watch Luke from afar, it is not inconceivable that Luke could observe Rey from the hidden safety of Ach-To.
Luke has a plan, as did Obi-Wan and Yoda. Granted, their plan probably didn’t involve waiting for an astromech droid to coming rolling by and herald them to action, but that’s thing about plans isn’t it?
As Luke is standing there in front of Rey, who is holding his old lightsaber, I can’t help but feel that he is echoing the thoughts of his old friend Han and thinking, “This is not how I thought this day was going to turn out.”
So much for the best-laid plans, because once again it would appear that the Force has intervened and what happens next is anyone’s guess.
The Cantina Cast
The wretched hive your Jedi Master warned you about!