Mark Hamill shook the world of the Star Wars fandom this past weekend, taking to Twitter to reveal – nay, warn – everyone who is a fan of the massive sci-fi franchise to stay away from an old comic book released in 1981, a comic featuring a stor titled “The Last Jedi.” The actor urged his followers to actively ignore the comic for fear of spoilers. “I'm begging you,” Hamill implored, “For your own good-DO NOT READ this spoiler-laden comic before Friday December 15th 2017,” which just so happens to be the official date of the theatrical release of the next installment in the Star Wars saga.
Most took it as a joke, though a few news outlets thought the actor was being serious. “Hilarious!” the actor said in a following tweet. “If anyone thinks Rian used plot-points from an 80's #SW comic book doesn't know [Rian Johnson]!” Indeed, Mr. Hamill. Indeed.
But wait, what if this subsequent tweet was simply damage control? What if the entire plot of Episode VIII actually is hidden in the pages of a comic book released two full years before Return of the Jedi would come to theaters? What if neither Rey nor Luke is in fact the last Jedi? Joins us as we dive into the pages of this comic and unearth the crucial details everyone at Lucasfilm -- and Mark Hamill, obviously -- absolutely don't want you to know!
Star Wars #49 was written by famed comic writer Mike W. Barr and illustrated by legendary artist Walt Simonson during a simpler time. The Empire Strikes Back had been released only a year ago, so we were still a few years away from the Sarlacc Pit, Endor, Ewoks and a final showdown between Luke and Darth Vader. Luke and Leia didn't even know they were brother and sister, yet! Han Solo was still frozen in carbonite, while Luke had a metal hand and a newfound unwavering confidence in his abilities as a master of the Force and Jedi. And that is exactly where we found him in this comic book.
Following a distress signal through the galaxy, Luke, Leia, C-3PO and R2-D2 traveled to an odd planet in the hopes of rallying an entire solar system to their cause, something that could prove to turn to the tide of the Rebellion's fight against the Empire. On this planet, our four heroes found exactly what they were looking for: a stranded prince by the name of Denid, rightful heir to the ruling throne of the planet Velmor. Betrayed by his Empire-friendly brother Anod, Denid was forced to flee his home planet before he could claim the throne, for fear of death.