Nine weirdly convincing fan theories about Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Will Rey lose her hand? Will Luke go bad? It's all to play for

In the two years since the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, wild theories have come along to challenge our perceptions of the galaxy as as we know it. With the impending arrival of Star Wars: The Last Jedi in UK cinemas next week (Thursday 14), here are nine of the most convincing.

1. Rey will lose a limb

The theory: Star Wars expert Tomas Pueyo has used ‘Ring Theory’ to determine that Rey is going to lose an arm or leg, pointing out that the central characters of each trilogy so far lost their hands in their second outing (Anakin in Episode 2 and Luke in Episode 5).

Could it be true? Something happening twice doesn’t necessarily make it a pattern – this theory is hardly scientific – but it’d still be a compelling development. Evidence-wise, Star Wars YouTuber Mike Zeroh reports that a source saw Daisy Ridley on the set of the film with “her left arm… covered by a green-screen sleeve.” Intriguing.

2. The Knights of Ren are Luke’s former students

The theory: Kylo Ren didn’t kill all the Jedi who were training at Luke’s academy: he recruited them. This Reddit theory suggests someone named Ren was a student at Luke’s academy, and “flirted with the dark side of the force”, being subsequently banished or killed by Luke. The other students, led by Kylo, “broke away to form the Knights of Ren, inspired by [Ren’s] death, and questioning Luke’s teachings.” This theory goes on to suggest that Rey and the original Ren are siblings, like Luke and Leia – and Luke sent Rey away to prevent her from going down the same route her sibling did.

Could it be true? Definitely. It might explain why Luke is so reluctant to teach Rey at the start of The Last Jedi, as we’ve learned from cast interviews.

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3. The Jedi order is going Grey

The theory: This Redditor says the Jedi is “an archaic order with regressive values that inevitably led to its own destruction.” A new, ‘Grey’ order is needed – which is why Luke says the Jedi “must end” in the film’s trailer. The theory continues: “Luke now knows that the Jedi are just as much of a cancer to the Force as the Sith are, and that force-sensitive people will need to be trained in a totally new way.” The theorist reckons that force-users ought to allow themselves to be “pulled in both directions” – meaning, therefore, that when Jedi and Sith commit fully to ‘Light-side’ or ‘Dark-side’ principles, they are limiting their power for no reason, and creating their own downfall.

Could it be true? Quite possibly. Rey actor Daisy Ridley recently teased: “This is the second of three films. So there may be a lot of grey that’s very exciting.”

4. Rey is Obi Wan Kenobi’s granddaughter

The theory: This theory emerged very soon after The Force Awakens, but it’s a good’un. YouTuber Mr Sunday Media has drawn comparisons between the characters, noting their similar outfits; their ability to perform mind tricks; and their stealth. He reckons it’d be neat if Obi-Wan’s student (Luke) ended up training Obi-Wan’s descendent (Rey). He also likes what it would mean for the relationship between Kylo Ren and Rey: their respective grandparents would be the former pals-turned-enemies, Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Then there’s a hint that Daisy Ridley herself has given: “Because I’ve said that I’m solitary, and that’s how I begin, that is probably a big clue as to what [Rey’s parentage] is”. Reminder: Obi-Wan lived as a hermit on Tatooine for about 30 years before the events of A New Hope. Still want more evidence? Look back at Rey’s vision in The Force Awakens, after she touches Anakin’s old lightsaber. In it, it’s Obi-Wan’s voice saying: “Rey, these are your first steps.” Anakin’s voice is nowhere to be found.

Could it be true? Quite possibly – it’s a fan-favourite theory. On a commercial note, too, it works well: if, as has been rumoured, there’s an Obi-Wan standalone film on the way, making Rey related to him would be the perfect way for Disney to generate more interest in the film.

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5. Snoke is the OG dark side force user

The theory: Snoke is hella old – in the novelisation of The Force Awakens he claims to have seen the rise and fall of the Empire. YouTuber Thor Skywalker reckons he was one of the first dark-side Force users ever, if not the first, and says he set the Sith order in motion. However, he considered himself “above” the Sith, using them as an army to rule the galaxy. After the Jedi order began, they defeated and imprisoned him in a distant part of the galaxy – but Palpatine found a way to free him in the event of his death. However, he’s still in a weak physical state at the moment – this is why he needs Kylo Ren to do his bidding.

Could it be true? Yep. It makes sense that the new trilogy’s ‘big bad’ is bigger and badder than Palpatine – and it would also explain why Luke originally went to Ahch-To, the oldest Jedi Temple: to find out how to stop Snoke.

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6. Kylo Ren is a double agent

The theory: This theory, which originated on Tumblr, suggests Kylo Ren defected to the Dark side so he could bring down Snoke from the inside. Killing Han was equivalent to Snape killing Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince: a fake mark of loyalty. He’s going to team up with Rey, the “personification” of the Light side of the Force, to defeat Snoke.

Could it be true? It’d certainly make a nice twist – though it’s perhaps overly forgiving to Kylo’s character, who for all intents and purposes is just a bitter, power-hungry asshat.

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7. Luke is gonna go bad

The theory: IMAX’s promo for the film shows Luke Skywalker on both the Light and Dark sides of the force. Redditors have argued a lot about what it could mean, but one noted that Luke says he’s scared in the trailer – and as Yoda says, “fear leads to the Dark side”.

Could it be true? Possibly. It’d be a little strange, given that Luke already turned down the Dark side in Return of the Jedi – plus, it’d make IMAX’s marketing a little too on the nose. But anything could happen.

8. Rey & Kylo are gonna fall in lurv

The theory: Rey will convince Ren to turn to the Light side, and they’ll become the galaxy’s most powerful power couple. According to this theory, Ren has fallen for Rey because: she stands up to him and he respects that; she is as powerful as he is, if not more so; he took off his helmet to talk to her, and the only other person he did that for was his dad; and he offered to teach her how to use the Force at the end of TFA.

Could it be true? Maybe, but those reasons aren’t exactly watertight proof.

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9. Snoke was created by Darth Plagueis

The theory: Many theorists reckon a legendary figure called Darth Plagueis (Emperor Palpatine’s one-time master) is Snoke; this goes one better. “From what I understand,” writes the theorist, “Plagueis attempt[ed] to create life but the experiment ended up being a failure because the Force sensed what he was doing and created Anakin in retaliation.” For the same reason, when Snoke was created he “came out wrong”, which is why he looks like a prune. After Palpatine killed Plaguis, Snoke fled beyond the galaxy and has only returned now Palpatine is dead.

Could it be true? The only mention the movies have made of Plagueis was in Return of the Sith, when Sidious tells Anakin about how Plagueis’ teachings could help him save his wife, Padmé, from death. It’d be unusual for the film to base such an important plot point on a character viewers don’t know very much about – but that doesn’t mean it’s definitely wrong.

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