tlj spoilers


THE LAST JEDI DELETED SCENE:  Luke Skywalker’s Last Lesson To Rey {x}

One of the biggest deleted scenes involves another lesson Luke Skywalker gives to Rey, taking place chronologically after they talk inside the cave where Luke mentions Darth Sidious. Rey notices boats arriving at the island and there appears to be a big fire from where they’re landing. Luke tells her that it is a group of bandits who regularly come back to the island to plunder and kill the caretakers. Rey is very concerned and wants to help them, but Luke tells her that if you help them now, the raiders will come back stronger and it will make things worse in the future. He asks Rey if she is always going to be here to protect them, saying that a true Jedi Knight would do nothing and would only act to maintain balance, even when people get hurt.

Rey, furious at his reasoning, ignites her lightsaber and runs really fast, a Force-powered run that we glimpsed in one of the featurettes about the making of the film (see the screenshot at the top of this article). She runs over rocks on shallow water and bursts through a door with her saber into the village square ready for battle. Luke yells for her to wait, but she doesn’t stop.

She is surprised to learn that it’s not a raiding party, but an actual party, with caretakers celebrating and swinging glow sticks. This piece of concept art from The Art of Star Wars: The Last Jedi shows what the scene looks like. The caretakers all stop and look at Rey, confused. One of the caretaker motions her her glow stick and Rey swings her lightsaber, imitating her movements, and sighs. The caretakers resume partying. Rey spots Chewbacca sitting at the party with a bunch of Porgs and R2-D2 (wearing a festive necklace). “Seriously?” Rey says to Chewie before storming out to find Luke.

Rey is mad that Luke lied to her and she confronts him. He admits that he’s sorry, but that she ran so fast and he couldn’t stop her. Rey says that she thought they were in danger and tried to do something. Luke responds, seriously this time, that that’s exactly what the resistance needs – not some old husk of a failed religion. He was again trying to teach her a lesson. Rey cries, explaining that her real friends are really dying and “that old legend of Luke Skywalker that you hate so much, I believed in it.” Luke is in shock. He realizes that he pushed her too far. Rey tells him she was wrong about believing in him and storms away.

The scene gave a further motive for Rey to want to leave the island. The caretaker party joke apparently wasn’t very funny, but the real reason the scene apparently didn’t make the final cut is that Luke ended up coming off like an even bigger asshole. Even though the basic details were approved by the Lucasfilm Story Group, it somehow didn’t feel authentic to the Jedi “code”.

Oh, man, I was about to be REAL FUCKIN’ MAD AT THIS, that that’s not what “balance” means and never has been, but then I stopped and took a step back and considered this scene in context.  We’ve never seen Jedi say that maintaining balance means not stepping into to help people–they sometimes are not allowed or able to help people, but like Palpatine’s whole plan to lure the Jedi into the Clone Wars would never have worked if that was their definition of “balance”.

But also I can sort of see it in the sense that it fits with Luke’s attitude–part of him desperately wants to be convinced to get back into the fight, but he’s also desperately trying to push Rey away, he’s not saying anything that he actually means, if he did, joining the fight at the end would still directly contradict it, it would contradict everything he learned about being a Jedi Knight that we’re seeing in the supplementary canon.  This is not a lesson that Luke ever learned, this is not a lesson that fits with the Jedi ways, this is Luke being depressed as fuck and not seeing things clearly and sore at heart because he feels like the dark will always come back, so what’s the point?  Balance just means everything gets destroyed, so he’s trying to show Rey that so she’ll see what he sees.

And he’s not right about any of it, not where the idea came from or that it’s true, and MAN I HURT FOR LUKE SKYWALKER THAT HE IS IN SUCH A TERRIBLE, AWFUL, PAINFUL HEADSPACE LIKE THIS.

You just know that Rose’s thought process when she was lying in the snow was something like “OH GOD I’m going to die in the arms of Finn the handsome resistance hero, I must demonstrate my love for him in the cheesiest way possible C’MON ROSE YOU CAN DO THIS…we will win by….protecting…WHAT WE LOVE [kiss] nailed it”

Has there ever been a more #relatable star wars heroine

One thing about Luke and Kylo in TLJ:

Everyone’s saying “How could Luke possibly think for even a second about killing his own nephew?!” but, unless I missed something HUGE in that movie… he did not? He says he saw the darkness in Kylo and immediately turned his lightsaber on in pure instinct, which is very, very different to “wanted to kill him”. S’like… y’know that old movie trope where Person A is in a mildly menacing situation, and they hear a noise and turn around and point their gun ready to fire (or in some cases actually fire) only to have Person B yell “Don’t shoot, it’s me!” It was like that.

And even then Luke felt guilty about it!