Fans were introduced to a major new villain in Star Wars: The Force Awakens as Kylo Ren was revealed to be the grandson of Darth Vader, who idolized the deceased Sith Lord to the point where he would talk to Vader’s destroyed helmet in private.
But the parallels don’t end with Kylo’s attempts to snuff out a gang of freedom fighters and instill a totalitarian regime across the galaxy, as indicated in the new trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which features a unique callback to a pivotal moment in the prequel trilogy.
A scene in which Kylo Ran leads a cadre of First Order Flametroopers into a cavern on the mining planet of Crait, which occurs at the 0:10 mark in the trailer above. This clip pays homage to a similar overhead shot which shows Anakin Skywalker leading a squad of Clonetroopers into the Jedi Temple to execute Order 66, as seen in Revenge of the Sith.
Check out the image below.
There is no shortage of recurring motifs or circular storytelling in the Star Wars saga, with children treading paths walked by their parents and parallels from the past echoing into the future.
And though Vader eventually turned back to the Light Side, killing the Emperor and ending his brutal regime with his dying act, it’s very likely Kylo Ren saw that as a moment of weakness and prefers to think of dear ole’ gramps as a Sith Lord through and through.
Revisionist history is a wonderful thing, y’all.
Darth Vader was long considered to be “the chosen one” referred to in Jedi prophecy, and was even stated to be so by George Lucas in an interview when he still owned Lucasfilm. But since the purchase by Disney, all bets are off unless it’s specifically stated in the canon, and much of that canon was stricken from the record as the Extended Universe became “Star Wars Legends.”
But Vader still looms large in the new Star Wars trilogy and Kylo Ren wants to do right by his grandfather. We’ll find out if he succeeds and if Star Wars: The Last Jedi ends on a similarly depressing note as The Empire Strikes Back does…
Star Wars: The Last Jedi premieres in theaters on December 15.