With the recent release of the first trailer for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, speculation has been flying faster than the Millennium Falcon about what it means for the world’s most beloved sci-fi franchise. I myself had a few theories, chief among them being that Luke Skywalker will have turned to the Dark Side in the years since the second Death Star was destroyed.
Like father, like son, right?
It’s really not such a far-fetched idea once you give it some thought, and you all know it would add an extra dimension to the rest of the series. So, why do I think that Luke’s gone Dark? Well…
*Disclaimer: All of the evidence presented here is based on the film series alone, as I have not seen or read much of the expanded universe.*
6. If you watch the films in Machete Order, it makes a lot of sense.
If you’ve never heard of Machete Order, it’s explained in great detail here, but the basic gist is that instead of watching the films in release order (IV, V, VI, I, II, III) or episode order (I, II, III, IV, V, VI), you watch them in an alternate order: IV, V, II, III, VI. In this way, Episodes II & III play as an extended flashback after the cliffhanger ending of at the end of The Empire Strikes Back, preserving and then explaining the twist that Vader is Luke’s father.
As explained in the original article, this order highlights the similarities between Luke and Anakin, especially given the way Luke acts in Return of the Jedi. In the early scene when Luke invades Jabba’s palace, one could absolutely believe that Luke has become bitter and turned to the Dark Side – he Force chokes someone for god’s sake! Add to that how he wears black throughout the whole film (although, as many sites like to mention, it is revealed at the end that his outfit is white underneath, a metaphor for Luke himself, blah blah). Anyway, the point is that Luke acts much more like a Sith than a Jedi in Jedi, and given the events of the film, it’s not hard to imagine that he goes dark.
5. The new trilogy needs a big twist.
*SPOILER WARNING* Vader is Luke’s father. *GASP* Surely you jest! How can that be, I mean…
Yeah, yeah. We all know it now, three decades later, but when the film came out, Vader’s identity was a huge revelation. Similarly, the prequel trilogy has an (albeit minor) twist with Palpatine becoming the Emperor (although it only works if you watch the films in Episode Order).
At any rate, if we’re going to have a third trilogy, then there better be a good twist in there somewhere. And what better than the last remaining Jedi (as far as we know, again, I’m going by the films now) turning Dark? Jaws would hit the ground so hard cinema’s would be cleaning teeth off the ground for weeks! I mean, just the thought of Luke playing the wise Obi-Wan role, grooming a new Jedi, when BAM! We reveal he’s actually training a Sith apprentice. Nobody would see that coming (well, I guess maybe now you will, but still).
4. Who else is there?
Remember, unlike Jedi, there are only two Sith at any given time: a Master and an Apprentice. So far, Palpatine was always the Master, with Maul, Dooku, and Vader as his apprentices (each starting after the last had died). With both Palpatine and Vader dead at the end of Jedi, as well as Yoda and Obi-Wan, as far as we know, Luke is the only* person in the Galaxy who knows the way of the Force, Dark or Light.
So, going a step further, that means that if there’s any Sith left, they wouldn’t have had anyone to learn from if Luke stays Light and goes Jedi – likewise, there would be no Jedi if Luke turns Sith. From the trailer, we know that there will be someone with a red lightsaber (more on that in a moment) which is the signature of the Sith in every film. Therefore, if there is a Sith out there, the only person capable of being his master is Luke.
Remember, we had no sign of Jedi in the trailer – just Sith. And don’t forget the title – The Force Awakens. That implies it’s been asleep – which isn’t something you’d say if Luke had gone around training more Jedi. The trailer makes it clear that BOTH sides of the Force have been dormant, so it’s fair to assume that Luke has not revived the Jedi Order. Which means any Sith would have had to learn everything directly from Luke.
*This assumes that Yoda and Obi-Wan are the only two Jedi who survived Order 66. Again, as far as the film series goes, this can be taken as cannon.