- Star Wars fans debate changes to the Jedi and the Force in newer films, comparing them to the original trilogy.
- Original trilogy presents the Force as a mysterious energy with rare acts of manipulation tied to discipline and training.
- Newer media showcases Jedi with incredible powers, potentially deviating from the mystical and restrained portrayal in the originals.
Star Wars fans got into a heated argument over perceived changes to the nature of the Jedi and the Force in newer films and shows compared to the original trilogy.
In Star Wars: A New Hope, the Force is presented as an energy field that only a few characters can sense and channel. The film wisely holds back on showcasing too much, with Obi-Wan Kenobi using only small-scale mind tricks and the climax seeing Kenobi vanish when struck down by Vader. That mystery expands dramatically in the next two films with new powers on display, like force jumps, limited telekinesis, lightning conjuring, and the scene of Yoda straining to levitate Luke’s sunken X-Wing from a swamp. Yet despite raised stakes in combat against the Empire, these films keep such overt acts of Force manipulation relatively rare and tied to extensive discipline and training.
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A Reddit post from user u/conn_r21 argues that newer Star Wars media has transformed the Force into “dragonball”-esque displays of power, with beings effortlessly pulling Star Destroyers from the sky. Additionally, the prominence of Jedi characters across films, shows, and games has made them feel “common” rather than exceptionally rare. However, as user Michael_Gibb notes, looking deeper at the original trilogy reveals implications that Jedi were far more common before the rise of the Empire. Yes, they seem “rare” in the films, but there are references to a time when Jedi actively served the Old Republic as peacekeepers in what may have been far greater numbers.
The original Star Wars trilogy ties Force feats to key moments of character growth and dramatic tension. Backed by John Williams’ haunting score, these restraint helps sell the Force as a mystical energy that perhaps cannot be easily measured or explained. Few beings access it, and when they do, it feels special. Compare this to newer films and television series, where Jedi and Sith-in-training seem capable of incredible telekinetic, physical, and mental feats surpassing anything seen in the originals. For example, The Mandalorian series depicted Force prodigy Grogu effortlessly force choking and levitating objects.
The legacy of the original Star Wars trilogy makes it inevitable that additions and changes will be passionately debated within the fandom. The subtle, mystical presentation of the Force and the Jedi order established in those films holds nostalgic power. However, for the franchise to continue thriving, some evolution is necessary, even when it occasionally conflicts with past approaches.
The Star Wars saga is available on Disney Plus.
Star Wars is a multimedia franchise created by George Lucas and Lucasfilm Ltd with the 1977 motion picture. The science fiction franchise follows the adventures of characters (both humanoid and alien) in outer space, including those who can wield a mystical power known as the Force. Since the release of the original trilogy movies, the franchise has expanded to include multiple films and branched out to other mediums like comics, video games, TV shows, theme park attractions, and more. The IP and Lucasfilm were sold to Disney in 2012.
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Source: conn_r21, Michael_Gibb/ Reddit