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Star Wars: The Failure of the Skywalkers

Key Gunray is the galaxy’s foremost expert (self-described) on Jedi Master Luke Skywalker. The following piece is based on his own findings and does not reflect the stances or opinions of this establishment.

ed. Sir Traagi Culo’uss

I am honored and humbled to be able to share my new findings here at The Bar’leth Journal of Antiquities. Being the foremost expert on such an elusive subject as Jedi Master Luke Skywalker typically means that my expertise is largely in the form of fun facts that breathe life and context into an essentially ubiquitous war hero. That prevalence is precisely why I felt the need to reach as many as possible with my recent findings, which I believe supply some context for his disappearance. 

Typically, I treat any recordings of Master Skywalker with great skepticism. In nearly three decades of chronicling his adventures, I have maybe seen minutes of footage, and own even less. A tip about the last Jedi Master in action was likely too good to be true, but with his recent disappearance, any information about him is especially important to uncover. While I do not believe the newly discovered footage will materialize any leads on his current whereabouts, it is an incredible artifact from the brief period where Luke Skywalker was the hero of the galaxy rather than the failure he would come to be.

The recovered footage is not time-stamped (it is also lacking any audio), but I believe the time frame can be reasonably gleaned from Skywalker’s physical appearance and the mission he appears to be accomplishing–that of reestablishing the Jedi Order by collecting force-sensitive children to train them in the ways of the force. My best guess is this would be somewhere around a decade into the New Republic, when he had time to be galavanting about, dragging children into his dormant religion.

By this period of time, the Master Jedi’s reputation had grown from war hero to galactic legend, whose feats (allegedly) included healing, seeing the future, and even creating black holes. At a certain point, the tales become ridiculous, but the point is clear: Luke Skywalker is one of the greatest heroes the galaxy has ever seen.

The reality, as demonstrated by this footage, is that the power Skywalker wields as a Jedi Master is more terrifying than it is inspiring–more destructive than sacred.

The ownership of said footage is currently under dispute by multiple owners. A brief description of its contents will follow. 

> An X-Wing docks. <

> Shortly thereafter, a cloaked figure is seen walking down a hallway. <

> A number of fourth-degree battle droids disengage from their previous task, targeting the approaching enemy. <

> The cloaked figure, Jedi Master Luke Skywalker (identified by his green lightsaber and use of Force-derived powers), engages the droids in various formations and in varying numbers. He eliminates them all with stunning efficiency. <

End Description.

For many, the footage confirms more or less what one would expect of a Jedi Master, especially one of Skywalker’s caliber. This is the kind of adventure most would expect from him, a heroic last-minute save and a demonstration of his great power.

However, historian that I am, I’ve come to view the footage in a different light, namely the context of the Skywalker family and the galactic legacy to which Skywalker belongs as the son of Darth Vader. The event in question is particularly reminiscent of one particular battlefield tale of Lord Vader’s, at least as relayed by rebel soldiers, and has significance in its parallel action as well as historical context.

By way of a preface, although the following is almost certainly true, there is no material proof of it occurring. It is an old rebel legend, widely used in rebellion propaganda all the way through the end of the war, both to underscore the terror-struck by the figure of Vader alongside the heroism, tenacity, and perseverance of the average rebel soldier (including my good friend Greth Ewdard, noted survivor of the encounter). Nonetheless, the following is an approximation of what occurred and is not necessarily the exact truth of the matter.

The legend takes place over Scariff, just as the battle there closes. The rebels are escaping with the plans to the Death Star, unknowingly pursued by Vader. The carnage has been related to me many times, each iteration slightly different, but a few elements remain constant: the rebels are easily dispatched, Vader goes untouched throughout the engagement, he advances slowly, methodically, but perhaps most importantly, the effort turns out to be a great failure. Lord Vader displays his great mastery of the Force in much the same way his son Luke would around a decade later, but their respective missions result in markedly different outcomes. Luke’s adventure leads to the addition of a new student to his temple, whereas Vader’s culminates in what may well be his greatest disappointment as a military commander: the destruction of the first Death Star.

This, however, is where I must remind you of our own historical context, two decades removed from Skywalker’s great child hunt. His New Jedi Order was, indeed, a failure. As far as we know, the Jedi Master did not train a single Jedi to mastery, nor even to a point from which they could reasonably leave to continue their training alone, a fact often considered especially disappointing given the tragic storm that destroyed the temple structure itself.

It is possible, even likely, that Skywalker’s disappearance led to the First Order gaining the opportunity to grow in power enough to now wield a troubling amount of power throughout the galaxy (Senator Leia Organa, however, Skywalker’s twin sister, also has a hand in that, although that is perhaps a subject for another time).

Luke Skywalker, like his father before him, was impressive. He had proved himself time and again that he had everything it took to be a hero. Yet, he failed. The whole galaxy required his assistance, including his students and, ultimately, himself. But he failed, just like his father before him. The legacy of the Skywalker name is one of heroism across the Galaxy, but I hope that this understanding evolves through the coming years, with my expert assistance, of course. The more we bring history of this sort into the light, the better prepared we are to confront the horrors of the future—and the present.