It has begun. The new trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens has finally arrived, and after watching it, it's left us yearning for more - just like a great trailer should.
Even though the movie effectively turns my entire cupboard of Expanded Universe books and graphic novels into so much processed tree bark, I still got goosebumps. I also couldn't stop myself from quoting Emperor Palpatine at the end of Return of the Jedi when I realised I'd have to wait two more months to see the actual movie: "YaaaaAAAAaarrhhhghhhhhhh" *boom*
Here's everything I've managed to gather from the bite-sized appetiser.
We see a masked figure exploring the wreckage of a large structure. We can surmise that it’s Daisy Ridley’s Rey, as she’s seen walking through the desert with BB-8 right after, with her voice-over saying that she’s “no one”.
It’s safe to say that the wreckage she’s exploring is the crashed Star Destroyer on Jakku that we saw in previous teasers, especially since we know that Rey’s a scavenger of some sort from her official information.
It makes sense that she’d search the wreckage for scraps she could use too, since that would be a mother lode of valuable materials. What we saw in the earlier scenes look like they could be the Star Destroyer’s hallways and cargo holds.
Next it’s a shot of her watching a spacecraft taking off, just like Luke Skywalker used to do on Tattooine, all those decades ago. I guess this is where we draw parallels between Rey, and Anakin and Luke Skywalker in the previous trilogies.
Large numbers of Stormtroopers gathered in front of a very Nazi-styled rally of some sort. Yup, the Empire’s still evil. From the background, it looks like they’re on a snow-covered planet. Hoth, maybe?
It’d be a nice touch if it was Hoth, with the remnants of the Empire - now called the First Order - hiding out there, just like the rebels used to. How the tables have turned, eh?
[Update]: as poetic as that may have been, it turns out the planet is actually Starkiller Base, an ice planet converted into a star system-destroying super weapon. Oh, well.
John Boyega’s Finn makes an entrance, with him pulling off his Stormtrooper helmet. He says “I was raised to do one thing, but I’ve got nothing to fight for” as we see a damaged TIE fighter crashing towards a planet, implying that he's inside it.
Since Stormtroopers don’t usually fly TIE fighters, perhaps it means he tried to desert, and was subsequently shot down. Hey, nobody said the path to redemption was easy.
Looks like Finn’s crashed on Jakku, and is now making his way to a small outpost after walking through the desert. That’s probably where he meets Rey.
We’re brought to the bridge of a star cruiser where what looks to be Kylo Ren is staring out the viewport. JJ Abrams’ favourite lens flare also makes an appearance. He couldn’t have kept that to Star Trek?
Anyway, Kylo Ren’s voice rings out ominously “Nothing will stand in our way. I will finish what you started”, as we next see him looking at the scorched and melted remains of Darth Vader’s helmet. We can assume he means the eradication of the Jedi here.
Now Kylo Ren appears to be doing some kind of Dark Jedi Force magic to some poor soul, who looks to be in a heck of a lot of discomfort due to it. He screams as the shot dissolves into an atomic bomb-esque explosion engulfing a forest.
It’s the Millennium Falcon, and it’s evading some TIE fighters as it flies around what looks like more crashed Star Destroyers on Jakku.
Seeing as there’s a space battle in EA’s Star Wars Battlefront called “The Battle of Jakku”, it makes sense that the aftermath would be wreckage being drawn in by the planet’s gravitational field.
We also hear a voiceover from Rey, who says “Those stories about what happened(?)”. To which Han Solo’s voice replies, “It’s true”.
Now Rey and Finn are seen on board the Millennium Falcon, which is where the previous conversation was taking place. It’s also the first time we see Han Solo in this trailer! The years have not been kind to him. He finishes his previous sentence with the words “all of it”. What could be the “all of it” he’s referring to that’s true? Let's face it, there's a lot of fairly crazy stuff that's happened in the previous Star Wars movies, so there is no shortage of possibilities.
We’re entering hyperspace! At least it looks like the Millennium Falcon’s hyperdrive works properly in this movie (for now).
Kylo Ren’s standing in the rain, brandishing his uniquely configured lightsaber. It’s the first time we’ve seen a lightsaber used in the rain, meaning it won’t short out when wet. Useful information!
He’s standing with a squad of very similarly-dressed individuals too. Either that’s his personal guard, his elite squad that he’s personally commanding, or the Knights of Ren he’s purportedly a former a part of.
A squadron of X-Wings flies across open water, S-foils locking in attack position as they scream towards Stormtroopers hiding out among some rocks. A short battle ensues, with TIE fighters joining the fray.
We’re then introduced to Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron, as he pats Finn on the shoulder when he walks by. It looks like they’re about to go into battle, with the scene ending in an X-Wing shooting down a TIE fighter.
The Resistance really seems to have the upper hand throughout the trailer, meaning they may be the dominant force at the moment.
Throughout all this carrying over to the next few shots, we hear Han’s voiceover saying “The Dark Side, the Jedi, they’re real.” From what we gather, neither the Sith or the Jedi order have been re-established, and a lot of history has been lost in the past 30 years since Return of the Jedi. Han’s one of the few people who still know the whole story.
We’re back on Jakku, where a large explosion stuns Rey and Finn. Either they go back to Jakku, or this is from earlier in the film. It’s a little strange that this appears here.
Han leads Rey, Finn, and BB-8 past a droid towards a gate with several coloured flags above it. This could be a village on Jakku, judging by the scavenged look of everything in the frame.
We see a blink and you miss it shot of someone patting R2-D2. Judging by the robotic right hand, it’s most likely to be Luke Skywalker. Good to see that both he and R2 are in the film, though why we haven’t seen more of them in the trailers and posters are a mystery. My money’s on there being a major plot twist regarding them that Disney can’t risk revealing. Some people have speculated that Luke might even be a bad guy in the new trilogy. Noooooo!
An Imperial shuttle lands in a burning a village as Stormtroopers led by the chrome-clad Captain Phasma (played by Gwendoline Christie aka Game of Thrones' Brienne of Tarth) march through it. Kylo Ren’s there too, and he’s shown to slash his lightsaber through something.
The scene cuts immediately to Rey crying over a body, which could mean that the First Order’s just killed someone close to her. It does look like the prior Stormtrooper scene could be them attacking the Jakku village we apparently saw Han leading them to earlier.
Finn, Chewbacca (rrraaargh), and Han are standing with their hands up, looking amazed at something flying by. Looks like they’ve just been captured and something/someone’s flying in to rescue them.
Another voiceover chimes in, and we’re pretty sure it’s Carrie Fisher as Leia! She says “The Force, it’s calling to you”. as we cut to an aerial battle on Starkiller Base.
Makes sense that the Resistance would move to attack such a deadly superweapon. Let's hope it's fully armed and operational, and not a trap. Since she says this as Poe Dameron in flying with BB-8 on-board his X-Wing, it probably means he’s Force-sensitive.
This is where the trailer gets messy. We see in quick succession: Stormtroopers getting swiftly off a shuttle, Rey firing a blaster at something, X-Wings obliterating some Stormtroopers, Kylo Ren Force Pushing something, the Millennium Falcon flying through an explosion pursued by a TIE fighter, an explosion ripping through the bridge of a starship, and Han hugging Leia(!).
These all look like parts of the scenes we’ve already seen in this trailer though.
Here’s where it gets interesting. Finn starts up a blue lightsaber, which is strongly rumoured to be Anakin’s original lightsaber. You know, the one that Luke lost when Vader chopped off his hand in The Empire Strikes Back.
Finn then prepares to duel with Kylo Ren! Looks like he might have bitten off way more than he could chew there before the screen cuts to black.
A voice in the darkness says “Just let it in”, which is likely to be a continuation of Leia’s previous sentence where she says “The Force, it’s calling to you”.
The Star Wars: The Force Awakens opening title and credits come up. Cue goosebumps. We’re sorely disappointed the remaining 30 seconds is all marketing info and not more scenes from the film.
Here’s what we know about each character from the trailer.
Scavenger on the planet Jakku, and owner of BB-8. She wants to leave the planet, and soon gets her chance when she meets Finn and Han, flying off in the Millennium Falcon.
Will fire a blaster at some point. Probably loses someone close to her too.
A former Stormtrooper who defects and crashes in a TIE fighter on Jakku. He meets Rey and Han, flies off on the Millennium Falcon, befriends Poe, and joins the Resistance.
He’s also assumed to be Force-sensitive, since he brandishes what could be Anakin Skywalker’s lightsaber and duels with Kylo Ren.
Commander of the First Order, and a Sith with Force powers that uses a cool unique red lightsaber with hilt-blades. Wants to finish what Darth Vader started, and actually went to retrieve Vader’s remains.
Still flying the Millennium Falcon with Chewbacca, meets Rey and Finn, and brings them to join the Resistance. He’s probably still together with Leia, too.
A Resistance X-Wing pilot who’s likely to be Force-sensitive. Befriends Finn, and will take part in several aerial battles, possibly with BB-8.
Luke, Leia, Chewbacca, and Captain Phasma are all in the film, but we don’t really know much else.