The Internet Awakens

2 February 2016

Whether you’re a newcomer or a long-time fan, there is no denying that the internet (and therefore, the world) has been lit up by the release of The Force Awakens. Just as the Death Star obliterated Alderaan, box office records have been smashed. Social media feeds have become a competition of how many times people have gone to the cinemas.

Since becoming addicted to the franchise, I’ve found a new side to the internet that can only be termed as batshit crazy. And that, my dear friends, is the world of Star Wars fan theories.

Some of the theories I came across are a bit weird, some make perfect sense and others had me throwing my laptop out of the window. It’s definitely an experience I want to share with you, so here’s some of the most insane Star Wars fan theories.

1. Jar Jar is a Sith

I’m not even going to pretend that this one isn’t true. Basically, the character that everyone loved to hate could be the most powerful Sith Master in the galaxy. He even has his own website, Darth Jar Jar. Theorists say that his powers stemming from the Force allowed him to be an influential factor in the prequels. Although whether they’re referring to his influence over the narrative or the quality of the prequels is up for debate.

2. R2-D2 and Chewbacca are Rebel Spies

This is quite a cool theory that makes a lot of sense. The fact that R2-D2’s memory was not erased in the time between Episodes III and IV (unlike C3PO, who remembers nothing of the Clone Wars) is very telling of its value to the Resistance. Points are also made about Chewbacca and Han Solo’s influence over their smuggling deals.

3. Han Solo is a Force user

That cynical scoundrel who thought the Force was a load of baloney was probably using it himself. Even in A New Hope, as Han actively questioned the validity of the Force and its true influence over prolific Jedi characters such as Luke Skywalker and Ben Kenobi, perhaps Han was more familiar with the Force than he thought. Besides, how the hell did he navigate that asteroid field in Episode V?

4. R2-D2 is a Force user

When I was doing my ‘research’, it became pretty apparent that you can just about chuck any character into the following sentence: “_____ is a Force user.” That’s what I thought when I saw this R2-D2 theory, but when you think about it, it makes a lot more sense than it ought to. R2-D2 does a lot of trippy stuff that can’t really be explained – finding Ben Kenobi on Tatooine in A New Hope or managing to follow Anakin and Luke throughout the entirety of their respective journeys.

5. R2-D2 is Luke’s father

Apparently a part of Anakin was implanted into R2-D2 to give him some kind of Force sensitivity. This is further compounded by the fact that every time Luke demonstrates use of the Force, R2 is there There’s also a theory that it was probably R2-D2 that destroyed the Death Star My brain hurts. However, despite all of this, perhaps this theory emerged from Luke’s distinct lack of a physical father figure throughout the original trilogy. While we could count the occasional presence of Obi-Wan as a Force ghost, fans have perhaps questioned the influence of other characters over Luke’s growth and development into the super-Jedi he has become. R2-D2 is sassy, assertive and incredibly intelligent at times, so why not point the finger at this little droid?

6. E.T. is a Jedi

You know how earlier I was saying that it seems like just about anyone/anything could be a Jedi, or be Force sensitive? Yeah, this is another one of those times. I wish I was joking when I say that this is a popular and well thought-out theory, but alas, it’s true. E.T.’s alien species is clearly seen in the Senate setting of the prequels, and E.T.’s familiarity with the Star Wars world is compounded by his recognition of a child dressed as Yoda in one scene in the Steven Spielberg movie. Although, surely it’s a bit of a sarcastic nod to the series when Elliott is seen playing with Star Wars figurines?

7. Rey is Obi-Wan’s granddaughter **Spoiler Alert**

I thought I’d end this on a somewhat serious/plausible note with a newfound theory from The Force Awakens. There are many examples in the film where Rey is Force sensitive, and to a very powerful extent at that. Additionally, the fact that the Jedi have effectively been extinct for over 30 years means that there’s not a large pool of parentage to choose from, so in the beginning, most people assumed she would be in the Skywalker line. Canon from outside the movie suggests that Luke Skywalker did indeed have a wife and also that Han and Leia had five children.

But what if she’s Obi-Wan’s granddaughter? They wear similar clothes, they both display Force power in the form of Jedi mind tricks to get out of sticky situations and they’re both pretty stealthy. Also, if this were true, it sets up a kick-ass battle between Rey and Kylo Ren that will mirror the epic fight between Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi in Episode III.

Why is this all so important?

Star Wars is undoubtedly one of the biggest franchises in media history, and also one of the first true science fiction series that has had a huge impact upon popular culture. From the characters to the environments and other-worldly concepts, fans have latched onto the unanswered questions provided in these movies, and in solidifying fan culture as a Force to be reckoned with, theories have been concocted to account for what is left unsaid.

But why bother try and solve the mystery? Surely fans have their various reasons and motivations, but regardless, these theories make Star Wars universe a bit more interesting, don’t they?

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