Similar to Captain James T. Kirk before him, Luke Skywalker is the kind of character who helps define Star Wars for what it really is – a sweeping space opera about the good guys and the bad, and the all-powerful force that binds them together.
That is, in a nutshell, the narrative throughline that has helped mold and shape Star Wars into the franchise we know and love, while Luke Skywalker has enjoyed a pretty incredible arc ever since he left the twin suns of Tatooine for pastures anew.
And yet, it’s fair to say that Star Wars: The Last Jedi brought Luke’s story crashing to a halt in a surprising, but no less satisfying fashion. It’s a decision that has proved contentious among some circles, leading to boycotts, online petitions and even calls to have the Rian Johnson-directed sequel struck from canon. No, really.
It’s all part of the Internet backlash against The Last Jedi, and while most of it has devolved into absolute nonsense since December of 2017, Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill, has taken to Twitter to admit that even to this day, he still doesn’t quite understand why his on-screen Jedi “gave up” when the Resistance needed him most.
When I understand, I'll let you know.
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) August 29, 2018
It would, of course, be foolish to take all of Mark Hamill’s tweets literally, as the actor frequently trolls his fans about Star Wars and much more – remember when he fooled everyone into thinking that he was present at San Diego Comic-Con when, in reality, he was still at home?
Nevertheless, it seems Hamill is simply referring to the ambiguity surrounding Luke’s finale in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which is part of the reason why there’s been such a big discussion about Episode VIII ever since it debuted. And isn’t that kind of the point?