The Force Awakens was basically the perfect Star Wars film. A mix of exciting new characters and familiar friends, Episode VII was the perfect bridge to bring Star Wars back for a new generation of fans. Of course, everyone is wondering what will happen in the still untitled Episode VIII, which will be directed by Rian Johnson. While Episode VIII is still eighteen months away, that didn’t stop us from compiling a small wish list of what we want to see in the next installment of Star Wars films:
Luke Skywalker in Action
If the end of The Force Awakens is any indication, Episode VIII will feature Rey’s Jedi training under Luke Skywalker. While it’s fantastic that Luke should play a major role in the next movie (and hopefully Episode IX as well), I really hope we get to see Luke in action as the Jedi Master he’s become as opposed to taking a more passive role a la Obi-Wan Kenobi in A New Hope or Yoda in Empire Strikes Back. While the original trilogy established that both Kenobi and Yoda were great Jedi, we didn’t really see either of them in action until the Prequels. I’m not expecting too many action sequences from Luke (after all, that’s what the new generation is for), but I want to see the full capacity of the Jedi Master’s powers.
More Poe Dameron
While The Force Awakens focused mainly on Finn and Rey’s journey from outcasts to saviors of the galaxy, plucky Resistance pilot Poe Dameron stole just about every scene in which he appeared. However, Poe didn’t have much of a story in The Force Awakens, other than to provide Finn and Rey with some desperately needed assistance during the fights on Starkiller Base and Takodana. Given that he’s one of the three main new characters of the Star Wars films and the master of fan favorite droid BB-8, let’s hope that Poe plays a larger role in Episode VIII, with his own story arc and character development. I wouldn’t mind seeing Finn and Poe team up again, given that the two quickly bonded during their escape from the First Order.
The Force Awakens did an admirable job bringing several new antagonists to life, including Kylo Ren, who received more characterization and motivation that Darth Vader did through the first two movies, and General Hux, who constantly competed with Kylo for Supreme Leader Snoke’s love and affection through the entire movie. However, one First Order antagonist who didn’t receive much screen time was Captain Phasma, leader of the First Order’s assault forces. Since they cast Gwendolyn Christie, a rising up and coming star, as the villainous Stormtrooper leader, we’re sure that Phasma will be a major threat in future movies (even if we didn’t see her escape from Starkiller Base). In fact, movie producers already confirmed that Phasma will be back and I’m guessing she’ll be out for vengenance against Finn for unceremoniously dumping her down a garbage chute in The Force Awakens.
We got good looks at lots of classic Star Wars ships in The Force Awakens, including X-Wings, TIE Fighters, Star Destroyers and even the Millenium Falcon. But outside of Kylo Ren’s distinctive V-shaped transport ship and Rey’s speeder bike, we didn’t see very many new vehicles. We’re not asking for wholesale technology changes like we did for the Prequel trilogy, it would be nice to see a couple of new ships in Episode VIII. Give us some cool new fighters or maybe a new Resistance flagship or even an advanced AT-AT like vehicle, if only for the cool new Lego sets that will appear before the Episode VIII’s release.
More Old Friends
The Force Awakens brought back both major and minor cast members from the Original trilogy, with Admiral Ackbar and Nien Numb making appearances as well as Han, Luke, Leia and Chewbacca. But there’s plenty of other Star Wars characters whose fates still hang up in the air. Whatever happened to Lando Calrissian and Wedge Antilles? Did Boba Fett survive his plunge into the Sarlacc Pit? What about Jar Jar Binks? Was he blamed for the downfall of the Republic? Hopefully Episode VIII will give us some answers about some of the missing characters’ fate and bring back more missing friends into the fold.