Why the Lightsaber battle in The Force Awakens is the best of the series

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens had a mammoth task of re-launching the series and appeasing one of the most opinionated fan bases on this, or any planet. It had to prove its right to exist, and continue cinema’s most sprawling epic story, and it did just that. Even without it’s great new characters, its returning old ones, JJ Abrams kinetic direction, and it’s back to basics effects, the Force Awakens truly soared with its lightsaber battle. Perhaps the best lightsaber battle of the series so far. Heresy! I hear you cry, but with a little bit of analysis we can see why this battle deserves to sit alongside the rest.
Spoilers for The Force Awakens and the Star Wars Saga below. Those two stubborn Star Trek fans who haven’t seen these movies have been warned.

In order to see why the battle of Kylo Ren vs Finn and Rey we have to look at what makes a lightsaber battle tick. It comes down to three things: choreography, plot significance, and character motivation. The Force Awakens hits these targets in a way that the series other battles just fall short.
For choreography, the fighting style of all three characters tells you so much about their characters. Kylo Ren, while fighting Finn, toys with him- making the fight last longer than it needs to to assert his dominance. Finns fighting style is ragged: when on the offence he lets his rage get the better of him with Ren easily parrying his shots, whereas when he’s on the defence he’s beaten easily. Rey on the other hand has better luck: with her proficiency with her staff, her experience with this kind of combat, and Kylo Ren’s injury at the hands of Chewie, the fight is more even.

Next is plot significance. This is the very aspect of a battle that makes Obi Wan and Darth Vader’s battle in A New Hope so cinematic, despite the choreography being so lacklustre. In The Force Awakens this battle is one of the ways that the film legitimises its new characters. This is the battle that the whole film was building too, despite the nostalgia of seeing old favourite like Han and Leia, the final act is about the new recruits, the faces of this new trilogy.

Finally, it’s the characters motivation that elevates this above Luke and Vader’s battles in the original trilogy, and the fantastic fight between Obi Wan, and Darth Maul in The Phantom Menace. Luke and Vader’s battle is the classic power of good versus evil. In the Phantom Menace, despite the breathtaking choreography, the battle doesn’t become personal until Darth Maul kills Qui Gon Jinn. Up until that point Darth Maul was merely a cool looking obstacle for our hero’s, it is only a personal battle for about a minute and a half as Obi Wan goes full berserker and dispatches Maul.
In The Force Awakens it Kylo Ren’s motivations, and what both Finn and Rey represent to him, that gives the battle an add sense of gravitas. Kylo Ren has just killed his father Han, in doing so symbolically extinguishing his allure to the light side of the Force. He pursues Finn and Rey into the forest of Starkiller base to finish what he started with Han’s death. His scream of “Tratior” at Finn belies his own fears: if a programmed storm trooper can turn good, then he fears that he still could. With Rey, she is the representation of the power of the light. He wants to kill Finn due to what he symbolises to him, and teach Rey in order to corrupt her power.
The film ends with his defeat, Rey can’t be turned, and Finn nearly died for a noble cause. Despite Han’s death Kylo Ren failed- a victory for the light that will surely affect what happens next in this great cinematic epic.

The Five Best, and silliest, Star Wars Fan Theories

1. Boba Fett killed Luke’s aunt and uncle.
The burning bodies of aunt Lu and uncle Owen are an iconic piece of brutality in A New Hope. It is assumed by Luke that stromtroopers, searching for C3PO and R2D2, were responsible. But what if that wasn’t the case. We see in The Empire Strikes Back that Darth Vader is not above outsourcing his dirty work to bounty hunters. I t is further revealed in A New Hope’s special edition that Boba Fett was on Tattooine at the time of these deaths. Far-fetched I hear you say, yet in Empire Vader singles Boba out with the comment “No disintegrations”. Considering all we have left of Luke’s beloved guardians is burning ash makes Boba guilty in my book.
2. Tattooine was the logical place to hide Luke
Now there is a real sense of favouritism going with where to hide Luke and Leia at the end of Revenge of the Sith. Leia is given a new last name and a royal upbringing, Luke keeps his last name, is taken to his father’s home planet, and given to people Vader already knows exist. Why wouldn’t Tattooine be the first place he would look for his children? Well because he hates sand apparently. Recounted in the hilariously awful scene in Attack of the Clones, Anakin tells Padme about his aversion to his home planet’s surface. Also his mother was killed there, and blah, blah, blah. This is a theory that only makes sense to George Lucas trying to fill his own plot-hole.

3. The Dark Side of Jar Jar
Jar Jar was a Sith all along, manipulating events throughout The Phantom Menace and giving everyone a cluster headache while he did it. This theory still does little to endear Jar Jar to the prequels critics. The fact that the pratt-falls were skilled force jumps, and the grating personality was a smokescreen, just means we were right to hate him in the first place.

4. Rey’s Force Powers
There has been a lot of criticism about Rey’s penchant for being perfect at everything in The Force Awakens. How can she fly the Millennium Falcon, how can she use the force so well, how did she beat an experienced Sith like Kylo Ren. It’s not because of who her parents may or may not be, it’s because she has an engineer’s mind. Think about it, Rey can talk to droids, she’s an experienced pilot, no one bats an eye when Poe Dameron says he can fly anything, so why is it so hard to believe a girl can do the same. When Kylo Ren uses the force on her she sees the mechanisms in this act and reverse engineers it the same way she does with the falcon suppressor. As for the Lightsaber battle, JJ Abrams has commented that she uses the lightsaber the same way she uses her staff- a weapon she was already skilled at. It’s not rocket science, it’s engineering.

5. Obi Wan and Padme had a secret affair.
Now this is a saucy one. The great, or sterile and creepy, love story between Anakin and Padme could have a little wrinkle, his name is Obi Wan Kenobi. Yes there is ample circumstantial evidence that a love triangle could be the driving force behind Anakin’s eventual corruption. It is shown that Padme and Obi Wan have a close bond in Attack of the Clones, so much that Padme umps at the chance to rescue him from Geonosis. Couple that with Anakin accusing Padme of the affiar which leads to him thinking he’s killed her with a force choke. Also why would bi Wan leave Anakin to die in the most horrible fashion if he wasn’t his petty love rival. A lot of great wars started through love and jealousy.

All Things Star Wars

In the world we live in today, news travels fast. Covering Star Wars news old and new, we’re here to keep you up to date with the latest, and not-so latest, news. Maybe you’ve seen it, maybe you haven’t. Regardless, we’ve got you covered.

Now let’s kick things into hyperdrive and get things going.

 

The Star Wars Show

Last Tuesday saw the announcement of The Star Wars Show. Pete Townley and Andi Gutierrez are the hosts of the online show, keeping viewers up to date with any news and announcements.

This is an official show of Lucasfilm/Disney, meaning we know everything they say is true, because it’s made and filmed in the very building where they work on Star Wars. Only one episode has aired so far, but viewers and fans should keep an eye on this show since it’s likely to be the place where Star Wars news breaks first.

New episodes are posted every Wednesday on the Star Wars YouTube channel and StarWars.com. You can watch the first episode here is not the version :).

 

Everything We Know About Star Wars Land (So Far)

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Last summer was a dream come true for any Star Wars fan when Walt Disney Company chairman Bob Iger took to the stage at the D23 Expo to announce what will be Star Wars Land, explaining it’s the “first time our guests can immerse themselves in the real physical world that is Star Wars.” Guests will be able to visit the 14 acre park expansion in both Disneyland in Anaheim, California and Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Iger gave fans a small taste of what to expect in the park, mentioning “local inhabitants” of the Star Wars universe will occupy stores, restaurants, and other sections of the park. This alone is a huge step for Disney Parks, as it’s something that’s never before been experienced anywhere. Not that we know of, at least.

That all sounds amazing, but guests care about one thing above all else: the rides and attractions.

“The land will have two fantastic signature attractions,” Iger stated, “including the ability to take the controls of one of the most recognizable ships in the galaxy: the Millennium Falcon…”

Done. Sold. Sign us up. But wait, there’s more.

Iger then continued with the description of the second attraction, stating, “and the epic Star Wars adventure that puts you right in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.”

Other information about the park is under wraps and the park’s opening date is yet to be announced, but it’s safe to say we’ll be there when it’s open!

 

The New Wave of Star Wars Figures from Funko

Great news for the Star Wars collectors! Funko has announced the third wave of Star Wars Pop figures! The majority of the figures are from The Force Awakens, but there are a few in there from the original trilogy.

Characters like Rey, Poe Dameron, and Kylo Ren already have figures, but this line is offering fans new versions. Not sure about anyone else, but we’ll be picking up a few, and by “a few,” we mean all.

“Traitor!” That’s right! The mysterious crowd favorite FN-2199 scored his own figure in the new wave of figures, along with Maz Kanata and Luke Skywalker!

Be on the lookout for these figures, as some are exclusives to Target, Walgreens, Hot Topic, and GameStop.

You can find the full list of new wave Star Wars Funko Pop figures here.

The new wave of Star Wars Funko Pop figure’s are set to be released this July.

Tips for Star Wars Collectors

Anyone diving into this article is either a Star Wars fan, a collector, or both. Chances are you’ve heard of these collectibles and figures, but if you haven’t, let us help build your collection with these quick suggestions!

Disney Elite Series

Whether a casual collector or toy for the kids (or the grown ups. Hey, we’re not judging), the Elite Series figure is a good option. These die cast figures are exclusive to the Disney Store only and retail for around $24.95. Only some characters are sold online, but you may have luck finding certain figures at your local Disney Store.

 

 

Black Series

Like the Elite Series, the Black Series is a fairly priced line of Star Wars figures. Selling for around $20 (depending on the store), these figures are incredibly rare to find.

The Black Series ranges from small Star Wars vehicles to six inch figures to a full on, wearable Kylo Ren helmet. Not in the market for a full size helmet? The Black Series has a line of smaller helmets, which can be neatly displayed anywhere with a built-in stand.

There’s something in this line for everyone.

 

Funko Pop Figures

Now, who hasn’t heard of Funko? If you don’t know the name off the top of your head, you’ll know the look of the figures. Funko Pop figures are everywhere, with almost any character you can imagine.

Even Star Wars characters.

Find characters from the original trilogy and The Force Awakens. Keep them in the box or take them out. There’s no right or wrong when choosing how to display these figures!

Of everything listed in this article, the Funko Pop figures are the most affordable, and probably the most fun.

 

Star Wars LEGO Sets

Some of these sets can be pricey, but they’re fun to build and look beautiful in the collection!

 

Hot Toys – Sixth Scale Figure

Now these figures are way up there in terms of price, but if you’re the collector with a bigger budget, you might want to consider the Star Wars line from Hot Toys. In case one isn’t familiar with the name, Hot Toys is a company that manufactures extremely detailed collectibles.

Hot Toys makes beautiful figures, but our favorite of all the Star Wars characters is the sixth scale Boba Fett. Now, there are two versions of the character. One from the Empire Strikes Back and the other from Return of the Jedi.

With the Return of the Jedi figure, there are two versions. A standard and a deluxe for twenty-five dollars more. The deluxe version includes a collectible Sarlacc base.

Standing just over eleven inches, the figure has thirty points of articulation and includes accessories like his jetpack, blaster, shin tools, and more. The paint job on the figure is out of this world. See what we did there? But seriously, the paint job and details is something you’ll have to see to believe.

You can find a great in-depth review from dfuzeNL of the Return of the Jedi figure here.

The Empire Strikes Back version of the figures is available for purchase now, and the Return of the Jedi Boba Fett by Hot Toy is available now for pre-order on the porno Sideshow Collectibles website.

Collectors can also find other sixth scale figures and more collectible characters from the original trilogy, like Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Chewbacca. You’re also in luck if you’re a fan of The Force Awakens, as they have many of the characters up for pre-order now.