New ‘Star Wars 7’ Trailer Brings The Force Ever Closer, But Still No Luke Skywalker

Another Star Wars 7 trailer arrived yesterday during one of TV’s most successful lineups. A 60-second trailer, much like a shortened, reworked version of the Star Wars 7 international trailer that came out on Disney’s Japanese YouTube channel, appeared in the midst of the series of programs by successful TV woman Shonda Rhimes.

As for what Star Wars has to do with shows like Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder, there is not much connection. As Forbes reports, that is precisely why a Star Wars trailer had to appear in one of the most unlikely of places, to make that connection and to widen the movie’s audience appeal. If the movie will cause the same kind of cultural phenomenon and have the same impact as the original, then it can’t just be people who already know the original and prequel trilogies to go see it. A new legion of fans can join onto the next giant Star Wars wave.

The new trailer shows us a Finn and Rey bonding while escaping destruction. You get to hear Finn do his great American accent as he introduces himself, despite his British upbringing. Daisey Ridley as Rey maintains her proper English accent. It doesn’t offer much new for people who have paid attention to all the other trailers that have been released up until now, but it does give a more compact, TV-centric perspective on the action, as if the new Star Wars were merely a shallow made-for-TV movie. This certainly isn’t a trailer for people who are already fans.

If a true Star Wars fan happened to be channel surfing and did manage to catch sight of this TV spot, they might still wonder why Luke Skywalker is unseen. That may be a major part of the draw for moviegoers already loyal to the franchise, to find out what happens to Luke Skywalker. He may be there, but not in a form that anybody expects, and one nobody will realize until the film comes in theaters next month. What if Luke Skywalker is inside Chewbacca, or someone else more central to this film? More clues and hints may be forthcoming in the weeks ahead. There is just a little over a month to go. A series of e-books are on their way with connection to the film, and more trailers are sure to follow.

What would be the most fun is if J.J. Abrams mentioned Luke Skywalker neither in the current promotional material, nor in Star Wars 7 itself, not until the very end, only to lead into a greater exposition of his story in Star Wars 8.

Though it’s hard to say what’s become of her brother, Leia Organa will no longer be referred to as a princess. She’ll now be called general. It’s rumored she will toughen up this time around in a display of maturity and power. She also reunites with Han Solo, and the couple can be seen embracing in the footage.

Entertainment Weekly interviewed director J.J. Abrams about the galactic lovers coming back to the franchise after so many years.

“The stakes are pretty high in the story for her, so there’s not much goofing around where Leia’s concerned. But it felt historic to have her, especially with Harrison, back in scenes together. I can only imagine the baggage that they bring to it, I’m just a fan who loves this stuff, but they’ve been living with it — and living in it — since ’77.”

Bringing back Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and even Chewbacca was a good move by the producers. It guaranteed them a certain level of credibility, despite the series being acquired by Disney and the underwhelming prequel trilogy. But will Star Wars 7 create more questions than it answers?

[Photo by Clemens Bilan/Getty Images]