Tag Archives: Emperor

Examining the Rogue One Celebration Reel

NOTE: A very small “spoiler” ahead from the teaser trailer shown exclusively to the Celebration audience. I only remark on it to confirm the identity of a character seen in the reel.

Jyn Erso’s Homeworld

Galen-Jyn youngHere we see the planet where Jyn’s father, Galen Erso, is living. I believe this is likely the first scene of the film.

Galen is a scientist who is wanted by the Empire and the rebels. He created something very powerful and now regrets it, being compared to J. Robert Oppenheimer, a scientist who helped create the atomic bomb. It is likely that Galen created a key component that is used in completing the Death Star’s superweapon. Continue reading

Rogue One Teaser Breakdown



State your name for the record.”

Jyn Erso.”

Felicity Jones’s character, Jyn Erso, is escorted in handcuffs through the Yavin 4 base. What could she have done to require the Rebels to “arrest” her?


Forgery of Imperial documents, possession of stolen property, aggravated assault, resisting arrest.”

A harsh sounding Rebel General (rank gathered by his insignia) reads off Jyn’s record in the presence of Mon Mothma — confirmed to be played by Genevieve O’Reilly, the actress who played Mothma briefly in Episode 3 (Speaking scenes deleted).

We also see the character played by Diego Luna, who looks to be a Rebel Captain based on his insignia. Some speculate that he may be Biggs Darklighter, but he doesn’t seem to be acting as a pilot in this trailer. I don’t believe Biggs has been given a rank in canon.

On your own from the age of fifteen. Reckless, aggressive, and undisciplined.” Mon Mothma seems to know even more about Jyn’s past.


This is a rebellion, isn’t it?”  — Jyn Erso

We see Jyn fighting in an environment that looks reminiscent of Tatooine. I speculate that this is later in the story, rather than a taste of her actions before the Rebels capture her, as Diego’s character can also be seen. Though this could be how they met.

In the first image, behind Jyn, we can see the first glimpse of what is likely Alan Tudyk’s droid character. Is he with Jyn from the beginning, or is he a character she teams with for the Rebel mission?

Jyn can be seen fighting with a tonfa-like weapon (which seems like her preferred weapon) and also a trooper’s blaster.

A shadowed figure sets off a charge, blowing up some troopers as Jyn and Diego’s character dive for cover.

“I rebel.” Mon Mothma seems amused by Jyn’s response.


We have a mission for you. A major weapons test is imminent. And we need to know what it is and how to destroy it.” — Mon Mothma

The Rebellion knows that some sort of weapon is being tested. Is this initial test thwarted by the Rebels, giving the line by Vader in EP4 new perspective? “There will be no one to stop us, this time.” Why have they chosen Jyn, and not a trusted member of the Rebellion, for this sensitive mission? What skills and/or knowledge does she possess that they need so badly?

We see a possibly apprehensive Jyn in some kind of transport.


The Death Star’s laser dish is set into place. Star Destroyers are dwarfed by its size.


“Is that clear…?” — Rebel General

“Yes, sir.” — Jyn

We get a sense of antagonism between Jyn and the General. He likely doesn’t trust her, and she likely doesn’t like authority. Is she given an offer she can’t refuse, or does she realize the importance of this mission at the start and willingly join.  Will she and the General stay antagonistic? Will she earn his respect? Crazy theory: Could he be a traitor?


Rebels readying for action with Jyn and Diego’s character.


Red Four and Gold Five?


Biggs with a standard helmet?


Ben Mendelsohn’s Imperial Admiral. Though he wears a white uniform (Grand Admiral attire in “Legends”), his rank insignia is that of an Admiral. Note that he is holding a blaster. Is he ready to fight, execute, contemplating suicide after failing his mission, or all three?


An Imperial tank (note new tank trooper armor) riding down a Tatooine-like street (same place where we saw Jyn fighting troopers?). Who are the other characters? They don’t seem to match the pics we have seen of the crew so far, though the character behind the masked one is similar to Jiang Wen’s, with a cylinder of some kind on his back left shoulder. Have these figures been captured, or are they just watching the proceedings?


Forest Whitaker’s character. Mercenary? Bounty Hunter? He has a limp and, possibly, a more rustic Vader-like life support suit. Is Jyn connected to this character? Is she trying to get his help for the mission? He seems very wary of her involvement against the Empire.


What will you do when they catch you?” — Whitaker’s character

Shadow Troopers?


Captured Rebel pilots being marched through a market. Same Tatooine-like location?


Jyn, Diego’s character, and a droid (likely Alan Tudyk) running through an Imperial setting. And troopers presumably running after them. Note the new trooper variation, reminiscent of Episode 6 Scout Troopers.



Are the Death Star plans on this?


What will you do if they break you?” — Whitaker’s character

Donnie Yen’s (likely-blind) character fighting troopers with staff. (Note the downed black X-Wing in the background) If he is indeed blind, could he – like Maz Kanata – be using the Force without being a Jedi? Crazy theory: A pirate trained by Maz? He is already my favorite Rogue One character so far. I hope he survives at least till the end. I would hate to see Yen go out early.


Shadow” Troopers firing massive blaster bolts on a beach. The beach battle sections are evocative of Normandy and Vietnam beach warfare.


What looks like an Imperial shuttle or troop transport blowing up. Reminiscent of Kylo Ren’s command shuttle but with four wings. Is this Mendelsohn’s ship, or maybe just a fancy troop carrier?


More explosions on the beach.


Ben Mendelsohn’s Admiral striding through the battlefield, dead troops littering the beach. Is this a walk of victory, or shame?


Who is the kneeling, cloaked figure? Is it Vader and they are hiding him for the trailer by giving him a hood? Note the Emperor’s Royal Guard. No doubt the Emperor will appear in this scene in some form. Have the effects been changed to hide a hologram of the Emperor? Crazy theory: is this Snoke?


If you continue to fight…” — Whitaker’s character

Could Whitaker’s character be a former warrior who now questions his actions and what fighting a war can do to a person?


Jiang Wen’s character. His last stand?


An amazing shot of AT-ATs on the beach with Jyn and Diego’s character running the gauntlet towards them. What could be worth the risk of running towards AT-ATs?


…what will you become?” — Whitaker’s character

Jyn in an Imperial disguise similar to TIE pilot gear. And most importantly (and largely missed, it seems), under Whitaker’s final line can be heard… the sound of Darth Vader’s mechanical breathing! This gives Whitaker’s final line much more weight: “If you continue to fight, what will you become?”


Until next time. May the Force be with you. Always.

Chris Miller

Use The Force- TWL #168

WampasLair_SquareKarl and Jason discuss their Top 5 Force Use Moments in the Star Wars saga! From Jedi mind tricks to Force lightening, no power is left un-Force-pushed!

z Continue reading


Before and After: Instructions Regarding Skywalker’s Son

Star Wars: Before and After the Special Editions
Instructions Regarding the Son of Skywalker

When we first saw The Empire Strikes Back in theaters, none of us was expecting Darth Vader to reveal that he was Luke’s father.  To be honest, even after the reveal, some of us were clinging to the hope that Vader was lying — biding our time between the second and third movies in discussions and debates about whether the Dark Lord of the Sith could actually be the father of Luke Skywalker.

Before telling Luke what really happened to his father, Darth Vader spoke to his Master about this “son of Skywalker”, revealing the plot to turn the young Jedi to the Dark Side.  In this brief holographic communication between Vader and the Emperor, we were treated to our first glimpse of this mysterious ruler of the galaxy.

When George Lucas revisited his classic trilogy, fans expected the voice and image of the Emperor to be altered to match the character as he was portrayed by Ian McDiarmid in Return of the Jedi.  What we didn’t expect was that the text of the transmission would be altered, as well.

In what was one of the best changes in all the Special Editions, the dialog between master and apprentice both conceals and reveals the reasons behind the plot to turn young Skywalker to the Dark Side or destroy him.  Consider the original version of this scene:


Darth Vader
What is thy bidding, my Master?

There is a great disturbance in the Force.

Darth Vader
I have felt it.

We have a new enemy, Luke Skywalker.

Darth Vader
Yes, my Master.

He could destroy us.

Darth Vader
He is just a boy.  Obi-Wan can no longer help him.

The Force is strong with him.
The son of Skywalker must not become a Jedi.

Darth Vader
If he could be turned he would become a powerful ally.

Yes.  Yes.  He would be a great asset.  Can it be done?

Darth Vader
He will join us or die, Master.

From the beginning of the movie, we know that Darth Vader is obsessed with finding Luke Skywalker, dispatching probes throughout the galaxy.  What we didn’t know was that he was doing so without the knowledge or consent of the Emperor.  When he tells Vader that they have a new enemy, he calls him by name — Luke Skywalker.

After repeated viewings, made possible by the technological innovations of movie channels and videotapes, once we had accepted that Darth Vader had once been Anakin Skywalker, we began to question the reasons behind the Emperor’s transmission.  Had he truly only discovered the name of the pilot who had struck the fatal blow to the Empire’s ultimate weapon, or was he testing Vader to see if his search was spawned by less-than-Sithy motives?  Was he simply letting his apprentice know that he knew about the boy as well, warning him not to betray him?  What had first been simply a matter of plot exposition and foreshadowing began to reveal shadows of the Emperor’s devious scheming and manipulations as we watched the movie over and over.

When the Special Editions were released, the insidious nature of the Emperor became more pronounced as his references to Luke were less focused on the boy himself and emphasized the man behind the mask who now wore the name Darth Vader.  Notice the differences in the transmission in the 1997 version:


Darth Vader
What is thy bidding, my Master?

There is a great disturbance in the Force.

Darth Vader
I have felt it.

We have a new enemy.
The young rebel who destroyed the Death Star.
I have no doubt this boy is the offspring of Anakin Skywalker.

Darth Vader
How is that possible?

Search your feelings, Lord Vader; you will know it to be true.  He could destroy us.

Darth Vader
He is just a boy.  Obi-Wan can no longer help him.

The Force is strong with him.
The son of Skywalker must not become a Jedi.

Darth Vader
If he could be turned he would become a powerful ally.

Yes, he would be a great asset.  Can it be done?

Darth Vader
He will join us or die, Master.

In the newer rendering, Luke’s name is never used.  He is called a “young rebel”, a “boy”, the “offspring of Anakin Skywalker”, and the “son of Skywalker”.  Although the Emperor considers young Skywalker a threat, perhaps it is not so much because of the boy himself, but due to the relationship between his own powerful apprentice and this newly discovered Force user.  Perhaps he had foreseen, either through a Force vision or simple deduction, that Vader would try to forge an alliance between father and son in an effort to overthrow the Emperor and rule in his place — which was exactly what Vader told Luke in their conflict at Cloud City.

When Return of the Jedi is viewed in light of this less personal interest the Emperor had in Luke, we can understand why he sought to have Luke kill Vader, taking his father’s place at his side.  If Luke won the battle, striking down his father in anger, he would have completed his journey to the Dark Side, and the Emperor would continue his new apprentice’s training.  Had Vader prevailed, the last link to his past would have been removed, making Darth Vader fully devoted to his master.  Either way, the Emperor’s apprentice would be more powerful from the conflict: a Vader no longer weakened by emotional ties to the past would be more capable of carrying out the Emperor’s orders, or an untrained Jedi would be more malleable than his father, able to be manipulated by his new master.  In either case, the victor would be the Emperor.  (Unless, of course, father and son work together against the Emperor — a proposition unimaginable to the arrogant dictator.)

In my opinion, the alteration in the Emperor’s dialog gives deeper insight into the machinations of the Emperor’s plan: to be the most powerful being in the galaxy.

What do you think?  Is the earlier version sufficient or does the Special Edition better show the motives behind Palpatine’s character?  Comment below or take the conversation to social media @shazbazzar on Twitter.