A Guide To the Old Trilogy
Written by Richie Castellano
Episode 4: A New Hope
To understand Star Wars, you must first understand the force. The force is an energy field that surrounds everything in the universe. Certain people have the ability to harness this power. There are 2 sides of the force, a light side, and a dark side. To tap into the light side of the force one must be calm and passive, and use it only for defense and knowledge. To tap into the dark side of the force one must be aggressive and hateful. The dark side of the force is generally used for attack, destruction, and manipulation. The light side force users are called Jedi. The dark side force users are called Sith. An experienced force user can control the thoughts of the weak minded, telekinetically move objects, see the future, and shoot energy beams from their body.
At the start of "A New Hope" there is an evil empire headed by an evil Sith lord. His second in command is a Sith called Darth Vader. They command a massive imperial army of stormtroopers. They have recently completed the construction of a weapon called the Death Star. The Death Star is a giant space station that resembles a small moon. It has the ability to destroy a planet. Before the completion of the Death Star, there was a galactic senate. This was the main governing body of the galaxy. The Death Star gave the emperor enough control to be able to dissolve the senate and run the galaxy as a dictatorship.
At the same time a rebel alliance has formed under the leadership of princess Leah Organa of the planet Alderan. During a battle, the rebels obtained the technical plans to the Death Star. They were transporting these plans to their secret base when Darth Vader intercepted them. Princess Leah quickly hid the plans with 2 droids (robots) C-3P0 and R2-D2. She tells R2-D2 to take the information to Obi Wan Kenobi. The 2 droids take an escape pod to the nearest planet, Tatooine. Vader kills everyone on the ship and takes Princess Leah back to the Death Star for questioning
Tatooine was a dessert planet at the outer rim of the galaxy. The 2 droids found themselves in the middle of nowhere. They were captured and eventually sold to Owen Lars. Owen Lars was a moisture farmer. He lived with his wife Beru and his nephew Luke Skywalker. While cleaning the droids Luke discovers the message to Obi Wan Kenobi. The only Kenobi he knows of is an old hermit by the name of Ben Kenobi. Luke and the droids find Ben Kenobi on Tatooine. It turns out that Ben and Obi Wan are the same person. Obi Wan Kenobi was a great Jedi Master who knew Luke's father Anakin before his former student, Darth Vader, killed him. Darth Vader killed all the Jedi making Obi Wan one of the few remaining Jedi. Princess Leah's message requests that Obi Wan take the droids to her home planet Alderan where the Death Star plans may be analyzed for a weakness. As this is happening a group of stormtroopers search Tatooine for the missing droids. They are led to the home of Owen and Beru, where they murder the couple. Luke discovers this and decides to join Obi Wan in his mission and learn the ways of the force. Luke, Obi Wan, and the droids meet up with 2 smugglers, Han Solo and Chewbacca (a wookie who looks a bit like big foot). The group escapes the Stormtroopers on Tatooine and heads for Alderan.
Darth Vader was finding princess Leah to be uncooperative. In order to find the location of the hidden rebel base, he threatened to destroy her home planet Alderan. She eventually told Vader that the base was on planet Dantoine, Vader destroyed Alderan anyway.
When Han Solo's ship, the Millennium Falcon, reaches Alderan, they find nothing except for the remains of the planet. They are quickly led to the Death Star where their ship is captured. They avoid being found by hiding in the ships smuggling compartments. The group then split up with different tasks. The droids find a place to hide, Luke, Han and Chewbacca (Chewie) go to rescue the princess, and Obi Wan finds a way to disable the tractor beam that is holding their ship. In order to allow Luke, Leah, Han, Chewie, and the droids to safely escape, Obi Wan engages Darth Vader in a lightsaber duel. As soon as they are able to escape, Obi Wan forfeits the duel and vanishes into thin air as he is struck down by Vader. At this point Obi Wan becomes one with the force and is able to guide Luke from the afterlife.
The group escapes with a tracking device hidden in their ship. Vader knows exactly where they're going. They flee to planet Yavin, where the rebel base is located and they find a weakness to the Death Star. Han Solo takes his fee and leaves the group to pay off a lone shark on Tatooine called Jabba the Hutt. Small one-man fighters attack the massive Death Star at close range. Among these fighters is Luke. In order to destroy the Death Star a torpedo must be fired into a small exhaust port to trigger a chain reaction. As Luke is taking his attack run, Darth Vader, now flying a small ship attacks Luke from behind. Just as it would seem that Luke is doomed, Han Solo comes back for a surprise attack and disables Vader's ship. Luke's attack is successful and he destroys the Death Star.
Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back
Vader is now obsessed with finding Luke Skywalker. He eventually finds the new rebel base on the ice planet of Hoth. The battle of Hoth begins, where the empire forces the rebels to quickly flea Hoth. Tensions arise between Leah and Han. Han is a mercenary and Leah is a rebel with a cause. The two are obviously attracted to each other, but can't stand each other at the same time. During the rebel retreat, Han becomes Leah's only way off of Hoth. While being chased by the imperial army, they realize that the light speed on the Millennium Falcon is disabled and they find a hiding spot in an asteroid field.
Obi Wan comes to Luke in a vision and instructs him to go to planet Degobah to study with Jedi Master Yoda. Degobah is a swamp planet with many creatures. Much to Luke's irritation, a small and annoying green creature with large pointy ears tags along, and insists that he knows how to find Yoda. After much aggravation and procrastination, Luke lashes out at the creature and demands to see Yoda now. Luke becomes very embarrassed when he finds out that this little creature is Yoda, and he was being tested all along. Yoda begins training Luke in the ways of the force.
Unable to repair his hyperdrive, Han Solo starts a direct attack against a massive imperial ship. As he attacks he quickly attaches himself to hull of the ship, becoming undetectable to the ships sensors. As far as Vader is concerned, the ship went into light speed at the last second and is now light years away. A very frustrated Darth Vader hires the help of Bounty Hunters to track down the Millennium Falcon. As Vader's ship dumps their garbage, the Millennium Falcon floats away without being detected by Vader's ship. One of the bounty hunters anticipated this tactic and follows the group to a planet called Bespin. The bounty hunter was called Boba Fett. Aside from being commissioned by Darth Vader, he was also commissioned by Jabba the Hutt, who put a large price on Han Solo's head. Han Solo owes Jabba a lot of money and hasn't had a chance to pay him back yet.
In Bespin there is a city in the clouds run by an old friend of Han's, Lando Calrissian. Lando agrees to hide Han's group for the time being. Unbeknownst to Han, Boba Fett led Darth Vader to the cloud city before Han arrived. Darth Vader captured the group as bait for Luke.
As Yoda teaches Luke to develop his force skills, he sees his first vision of his friends in pain in the cloud city. Against Yoda's wishes, Luke goes to Bespin to save his friends.
Vader's plan is to freeze Luke in carbonite and bring him before his emperor. Vader tests the carbon freezing facility on Han. Once Han is frozen he allows Boba Fett to take him to Jabba the Hutt. Vader also decides to take Leah and Chewie into his custody.
Luke arrives on Bespin and is led to Darth Vader in the carbon chamber. Luke narrowly escapes being frozen and begins a lightsaber duel with Darth Vader.
Leah and Chewie escape with the help of Lando Calrissian and attempt to rescue Han before Boba Fett leaves the city. They are too late. The three escape the cloud city on the Millennium Falcon.
At the same time, Luke is finding himself severely outmatched to Vader. Vader cuts off Luke's hand and asks him to join the dark side of the force. Luke resists. Vader then reveals to Luke that he is Luke's father. In a futile attempt to escape, Luke jumps off a high platform on which the two were fighting and gets pulled into a ventilation system where he is thrown out of the cloud city complex. Luke finds himself hanging off the bottom of the midair structure. Close to death, he calms his mind and calls for Leah through the force. Somehow, Leah hears his call and turns the Millennium Falcon around to rescue Luke. They once again escape.
Luke gets a prosthetic hand put on, and they
plan Han's rescue.
Episode 6: Return of the Jedi - summary by Damian Scro
All right, I'm going to give this a shot. It's kind of late, but we'll see how it goes.
In the final installment of Star Wars we see Luke as a Jedi. He may not be very impressive, but he is strong. In the beginning, we find out that Han Solo, still frozen in carbonate, has become a sort of decoration in Jabba the Hutt's palace. Jabba is a very powerful gangster who resides on Tattooine. It was he who commissioned Boba Fett for Han's capture. Han had been a smuggler for Jabba once, but now his loyalties lay elsewhere. C-3PO and R2-D2 are the first to arrive at Jabba's palace. They deliver Luke's message, in which he tries to bargain for Solo's life. Jabba does not even consider this and he puts the two droids to work. Shortly after, another bounty hunter arrives at the palace. This one appears to have Chewbacca, which he turns over to Jabba for the bounty. Later that night, the bounty hunter sneaks into the throne room and releases Han Solo from the carbonate chamber. We see that this bounty hunter is actually Leia and her love for Han is great. However, they are unable to escape from the mighty Jabba. Han is imprisoned with Chewie and Leia is chained up as Jabba's new slave. Meanwhile, we see that Lando is in Jabba's palace, he seems to be keeping a low profile until the time is right. Luke arrives at Jabba's palace. With the force at his side, he makes his way to Jabba and almost kills him before falling prey to the secret trap door to the Rancor pit. Luke manages to kill the large beast but this only makes Jabba angrier. He sentences them all to death at the pit of Carcoon. The pit is home to the mighty sarlacc, which will digest a person slowly over a thousand years. Jabba and his entire entourage travel to the pit. Before being thrown in, Luke gives Jabba one last chance. "Free us, or die". Jabba laughs at this remark and bellows "Put him in!" Luke gives a signal to R2, who is serving drinks on Jabba's barge. Luke jumps and flips himself back on the smaller ship as R2 launches his lightsaber into the air. Luke lands on the deck just in time for him to reach up and catch his weapon which he immediately ignites. A large battle ensues in which Luke kicks everyone's butt. Han and Chewie struggle to save Lando from falling into the pit. Leia strangles Jabba to death with the chains he used to lock her up. R2 frees Leia and saves 3PO from the pesty Salacious Crumb. They all race away as Jabba's sail barge explodes in a brilliant display. In the meantime, the emperor is personally overseeing the completion of the new Death Star. The emperor knows that the rebellion will strike soon and that Luke Skywalker will return to face Darth Vader again. Luke returns to Dagobah to complete his training with Yoda. Yoda cannot train him anymore, but gives Luke some advice. He also informs Luke of another Skywalker, which Luke later learns, is Leia. She is his twin sister. Yoda tells Luke that he must confront Vader and shortly afterwards, Yoda dies. Luke returns to the Rebel base and joins Han, Leia, Chewie, and the Droids on a mission to disable the shield that is protecting the new Death Star. They travel to the forest moon of Endor where the generator is located. While there they encounter the Ewoks who they eventually befriend. At this point, Luke decides to split from the group and allows himself to be captured so he can face Vader again. Luke pleads with Vader to search for the good side of himself. Luke can feel the inner conflict which is beginning to arise in Vader. Vader won't consider it and takes Luke to the Emperor. The Emperor tries to bring out the dark side in Luke by making him fight Vader. At the same time, a large Rebel fleet is approaching the new Death Star, which is thought to be incomplete and unoperational. The plan is for them to attack right after the team on the forest moon of Endor deactivates the shield. Things go wrong here. Han and Leia's squad is captured and it doesn't look good. This delays the Rebel fleet, the Empire ambushes them and a large fight begins. The Death Star also begins to fire upon the fleet even though it was thought to be unfinished. Unexpectantly, the Ewoks launch a major attack on the Empire's forces on the forest moon and another battle ensues. At this point, Luke is forced to fight Vader. The Emperor is trying to bring out Luke's anger by having him kill Vader and therefore take his place as the Emperor's apprentice. Han and the rebels on the forest moon finally get the upper hand thanks to the Ewoks. They are then able to deactivate the shielding on the Death Star. The fighters in the rebel fleet then proceed to attack the Death Star by flying through and hitting it at a crucial point. Luke is fighting Vader in the Death Star and comes very close to giving in to the dark side of the force. He defeats Vader, but will not destroy him as the Emperor wishes. The Emperor tells Luke that since he will not turn to the dark side, he will die. He attacks Luke, electrocuting him and draining the life out of him through the dark side of the force. As the Emperor mercilessly tortures Luke, we see Vader as he witnesses the awful sight. Though his face remains covered by his mask, we can see the conflict of emotions that comes to a boil as Vader watches his own son being killed. That is when it happens, the ancient prophecy is revealed as Darth Vader proceeds to grab the Emperor and kill him by throwing him down a large hole within the Death Star. This is the final turning point as Anakin Skywalker returns balance to the force. He redeems himself and returns to the light side of the force by saving his son's life. At this point Vader himself is dying. Meanwhile, Lando Calrissian and co-pilot Nien Numb blast the crucial point of the Death Star while flying through the huge space station. It is only a matter of time before it explodes. Luke attempts to save Vader but he is to far gone. Vader requests that Luke help him remove his mask so he can see his son with his own eyes. Luke knows that he will die, but honors his request. Anakin tells his Luke that he was right, and to tell his sister too. Luke manages to move Anakin's body to a shuttle and escapes the Death Star just in time. Thanks to the Millennium Falcon, Lando and Nien barely make it out of the station before it explodes in a magnificent display. Han, Leia, and the other Rebels watch from the forest moon. Shortly afterwards, a Galaxy wide celebration begins to celebrate the end of the Emperor's reign.
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