There are lots of people out there who think Luke Skywalker’s rise to power wasn’t realistic. First off, it’s a movie, so do yourself a favor and suspend your disbelief for two hours. But second off, there is plenty of evidence that suggests Luke had tons of training in the Force before his final face off with Lord Vader and friends. When you bring in a little context and allow for some science to fill in a few blanks, you too will see just how well prepared Luke really was for his encounters with the Dark Side. Here are 4 factors you overlooked in the Star Wars Universe when it comes to Luke’s preparedness as a Jedi.
- 1: Luke has been training on his own since returning from the Battle of Yavin
Remember that scene where Luke gets stuck upside-down in the Wompa cave? He summoned his lightsaber to free himself from the ice. We know what the Force is capable of from seeing other Jedi in action throughout the prequels and animated series, but look at this scene through the eyes of context. Luke had never seen the force do anything except trick some incompetent Stormtroopers and let his recently deceased mentor whisper words of encouragement at him. We don’t see Obi-Wan do any telekinesis in A New Hope. So, where’d he pick up this little gem? The only explanation is that he’s been practicing the force on his own. Testing the boundaries of what he was capable of. And if you think it wouldn’t be possible for him to figure out how to ‘Jedi’ on his own, have you ever gone to YouTube to find a tutorial? It’s not too much of a stretch to say Luke could have booted up his Empire Explorer and googled himself some answers.
- 2: Space is really big. Like, REALLY big
Maybe this doesn’t seem like an important detail, but when we’re talking about how much time Luke spent on Dagobah with his lumpy green mentor, this component is of paramount importance. Many would lead you to believe that mere hours pass as the Millennium Falcon travels between Hoth and Bespin; but for that to happen those two planets would have to be so close to each other that they would practically have to be moons of one another. Also, it’s the Hoth and Bespin systems, meaning they orbit different stars. The journey could have easily taken months without a hyperdrive to speed things up, giving Luke ample time to brush up on his Jedi training.
- 4: Time is Relative
Ever heard Einstein’s theory of relativity? Time passes differently depending on several factors. We don’t get a complete look at the planet where Luke gets his deeper training, but we can draw some conclusions based on context clues from the films. During Luke’s training with Yoda, we are also getting scenes of Han and Leia at Cloud city. For them, it seems only hours are passing. Yet, in one scene of training from Yoda, he said, “no more will I teach you today.” Then, just moments later, we see Luke stacking rocks with the Force as Yoda instructs him. Only hours passing for Han and Leia, but days passing for Luke and Yoda? We can conclude that a lot more time passes for Luke while he’s in the Dagobah system than passes on Cloud City, again stacking the preparation time in Luke’s favor.
- 4: Saber skills come from the Force
There’s a reason you don’t see everyone and their Wookie swinging around lightsabers in the Star Wars Universe: because a little more skill than knowing how to sword fight is required to compete with one. Lightsabers are the weapon of a Jedi, as we hear time and time again. Even in situations throughout the Star Wars Expanded Universe (Now called Star Wars Legends) we have stories of people who lose their Force sensitivity and along with it goes their lightsaber skills. Why would that happen, unless their saber skills were the result of their connection to the Force? The stronger the connection to the force, the better prepared one is for a fight with a lightsaber. So yes, Luke didn’t have much physical experience in saber fighting, but considering the months of Force training he has had, that really doesn’t matter.
Maybe you’ll think about this next time you hear haters trying to throw shade on our favorite Skywalker.