Star Wars has been leaning on the idea of overcoming evil with good since introducing Luke Skywalker in A New Hope. Luke was a young character who didn’t know everything, but wanted to do more, be more, and was branded as the savior of the galaxy. The Mandalorian season 2 finale brought back the iconic character, and its creators gave fans something truly special. They reintroduced a feeling that’s not always present in the franchise: hope.
With The Book of Boba Fett on the horizon, it’s a wonder if we’ll have another hopeful buildup within that series, especially with its main two characters having a large role in The Mandalorian’s season 2 finale. As for Luke Skywalker, he was the beginning. If I’m looking at the franchise as a whole with its films and animated series, hope doesn’t always peek its head around the corner. There are amazing stories, with incredible characters, but there are often pathways that lead in a direction where the expectation falls on wondering “when will they fail.”
Luke Skywalker led the original trilogy in a way that allowed us to hope for him to succeed. We hoped he would fire a shot that would end the Death Star. We hoped he would learn enough from Yoda to defeat Darth Vader. Ultimately, we hoped his will to not fight and kill his father would lead to something greater happening – a father defending his son. In the original series, Luke represented a promise in Star Wars that we always had a character who wanted to be more than what was asked of him. Skywalker was the epitome of hope and to see him return in such a fashion in The Mandalorian season 2 finale brought back feelings I’m not sure I’ve felt since Return of the Jedi.
With the help of Boba Fett and Fennec Shand, The Mandalorian and crew engaged in a monumental rescue of Grogu. Their plan seemed nearly flawless, and they all met back at the bridge on Moff Gideon’s ship. Potential conflict regarding the Darksaber aside, things seemed to be working out as well as could have been imagined. Then, the dark troopers found a way back onto the ship. They made their way to the bridge and its sealed doors, and the idea of seeing another hopeless battle began to percolate in the back of our minds. Though, something else happened.
The image of an X-Wing flying into view shouldn’t be so impactful, but it was. The motion sensors alerted the rescuers of the approaching craft, and as soon as you saw the X-Wing, this inkling of hope started to find its way onto the edge of your skin. This was especially true since the idea of our small rescue party taking on a “platoon” of dark troopers seemed perilous. And then you see the robed figure appear on the screen.
A green lightsaber brightened the screen and you just knew that everything was going to be okay. How often can that be said in the Star Wars franchise? There are countless tragic moments that Star Wars’ heroes encounter again and again. We hope for the best as fans, because we are rooting for good to overcome the Dark Side, but many times we’re faced with the facts that the storyline has already been written in a way where tragedy is the only outcome. It’s a dark reality of the beloved franchise, but one episode brought back epic feelings of amazing hope.
Oh, those sensor alarms went off around the 29:50 mark if you’re interested in reliving the phenomenal sensation of seeing that X-Wing approaching and understanding what that meant for the closing moments of The Mandalorian season 2 finale. We watched with heightened anticipation as the cloaked Jedi fought his way through those dark troopers, as if we were watching in awe alongside The Mandalorian or Grogu. There wasn’t anything more important than seeing how those sequences would play out.
The return of this Jedi did so much more than just lift back a hood. Step by step, you watched Luke’s lightsaber cut through metal, block laser beams, and his use of the Force crippled those “superior” troopers like small tin cans. It felt natural, long awaited, and it mimicked a “good feeling” we all hope for when we watch Star Wars. It’s a feeling I think we need more of in Star Wars, because much like the real world, there are times when all we want is a reason to find hope in something good.
With a new series coming on the horizon, I only hope such beloved characters like Boba Fett and Fennec Shand will continue the lasting feelings from the season 2 finale of The Mandalorian. Whether or not that happens, the lasting impression of seeing Luke Skywalker appear on screen to save the day will be something I will always hold onto.
Did you get an epic feeling of hope during The Mandalorian season 2 finale when Luke Skywalker’s X-Wing appeared? Do you think we’ll see more Luke or will there be equally powerful moments of hope moving forward in The Book of Boba Fett? Share your thoughts in the comments below.