[Warning: Potential spoilers for Star Wars: Episode IX ahead. Continue reading at your own risk.] Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is the culmination of over forty years’ worth of Star Wars storytelling. Therefore it’s fitting the story should come full circle with Emperor Palpatine/Darth Sidious playing a part in the final chapter. After all, taking the events of the saga in chronological order, Palaptine did start it all by manipulating Shmi Skywalker into pregnancy with Anakin. If rumors are true, we may see the return of another iconic character as well.

Rise of Skywalker
Image: Lucasfilm ltd.

One of the biggest complaints fans had about The Force Awakens was the missed opportunity to bring the “big three” back together on screen. And by the “big three” we of course mean Han Solo, Leia Organa, and Luke Skywalker. The film forever extinguished the possibility, too. While Han and Leia did reunite for a brief while, Han and Luke would get no such chance. Han died at the hands of his own son before the film’s end. As Luke says at the beginning of the Rise of Skywalker trailer, however, “no one’s ever really gone.”

Han Solo to return in The Rise of Skywalker

The ever-vigilant folks at Making Star Wars again bring us some juicy rumors when it comes to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. According to their sources, our favorite, scruffy-looking nerf herder will indeed return for the Skywalker saga’s final installment. More and more signs point towards Kylo Ren’s redemption. (Helping Rey train in the dessert, perhaps?) It appears he’ll get a little help in that regard from his departed father… and departed uncle.

Rise of Skywalker
Will Luke and Han reunite in the Force?

According to the rumor, Kylo again turns to Darth Vader’s charred helmet for guidance in the Rise of Skywalker. In doing so, he gets an unexpected response, not from Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, but from Luke. Following in the footsteps of his Jedi Masters before him (Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi), Luke appears to Kylo Ren as a Force ghost. Somehow he induces a vision of Han, who offers forgiveness and sows the seeds of redemption.

Han is back… but is his return necessary?

Han Solo; Rise of Skywalker
Image: Lucasfilm ltd.

Sure, I’d love to See Harrison Ford as Han Solo one last time in The Rise of Skywalker. Notwithstanding, this feels a bit… wait for it… Forced. (Sorry, couldn’t resist the bad pun.) Kylo Ren’s redemption is going to be a tough sell. For many fans like me, the character simply doesn’t warrant redemption. Through both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, Ren has had all of one singular moment to show there is any light left him whatsoever. (For those keeping score, that was hesitating to fire on the Resistance command ship, and his mother.)

If this scene plays out as described, it could make things in The Rise of Skywalker very interesting, indeed.

Star Wars: Episode IX opens in theaters December 20.

Source: Making Star Wars