Ever since one of the beloved cast members of the original Star Wars trilogy was written off in The Force Awakens, fans have been weary over what the latest installment would do to their favorites.
Warning: MAJOR spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi below.
Well, yes, he pretty much does die. But not in the same sense as most characters bite it in the saga, though it does have precedence in how some other Force-wielding characters have gone out.
After tricking the First Order and Kylo Ren into thinking that he has returned to the fight, helping the Resistance escape during the climactic battle on Crait, Luke Skywalker is revealed to be a projection as his physical body remained on Ahch-To. The Jedi had been conjuring up the image across the galaxy while in deep meditation, pushing the limits of what we thought we knew about the Force.
But in the end, the task proved to be too taxing on his physical body, and starring into the binary sunset much like on his birth planet off Tatooine, Skywalker's physical body fades and he becomes one with the Force.
Of course this is exactly the same thing that happened to Yoda when he passed, and again what happened to Obi-Wan Kenobi in mid-duel with Darth Vader. Both of them managed to become part of the Force as blue-tinted ghosts, an ability that few Jedi have mastered and was passed down by Qui-Gon Jinn in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
All of those characters went on to project themselves to the land of the living, with Yoda and Obi-Wan appearing to Luke at different stages in his journey. So it stands to reason that Luke will appear to Rey and maybe even Kylo Ren in Episode IX.
While it might not be the outcome fans expected or even wanted to see in the film, it did provide an epic ending to Luke's story in the perpetual struggle between good and evil. Hopefully we'll get to see him continuing to dole out wisdom to his former padawans in the next film.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is now playing in theaters everywhere.