The upcoming Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is set to unite all generations of the Skywalker Saga with the new trailer featuring an appearance from a battle droid, which served as the infantry units for the Separatists in the prequel films. These soldiers debuted in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace and quickly proved to be somewhat ineffective against actual humans, which is why the new trailer features the droid covered in dust and leaning up against a wall, as opposed to being used for its original purpose. While it's unclear just how many connections the new film will have to the prequel trilogy, seeing this reference was a delight to fans.
shit. we've got a battle droid sighting. pic.twitter.com/1KTaMZYIiw— Talking Bay 94 Podcast (@TalkingBay94) October 22, 2019
The droid briefly appears over the shoulder of C-3PO and, with no context for the scene in the trailer, it's unclear exactly where the droid is located or who owns it.
In the original trilogy, stormtroopers carried out the orders of the Galactic Empire and, while they might have held their own against Rebel troopers, they were regularly offed by our heroes. In that regard, it somewhat made sense that battle droids were seemingly precursors to stormtroopers, only for Star Wars: Attack of the Clones to confirm that the clone troopers were the actual military force that paved the way for stormtroopers.
In the sequel trilogy, the First Order has taken a page from the Galactic Empire with their own stormtroopers, though they have proven to be barely more effective than their predecessors.
Part of what makes the appearance of a battle droid so exciting is that the upcoming film is the furthest removed from The Phantom Menace, with decades having passed and the entire galaxy having drastically evolved. The sequel trilogy has confirmed other artifacts from the original trilogy, as well as actual characters, as the narrative is a linear continuation of what came before it. The incorporation of this droid is one of the biggest direct callbacks to events that happened long ago in the mythology of the series.
With this new film set to conclude the entire Skywalker Saga, this is surely just one of the many ways in which director J.J. Abrams incorporates iconic imagery from all corners of the franchise.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker lands in theaters on December 20th.
Did you spot the droid in the trailer? Let us know in the comments below or hit up @TheWolfman on Twitter to talk all things Star Wars and horror.