WARNING:: The following article contains major spoilers for director Rian Johnson’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, in theaters now.
Originally intended to be killed off early in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron instead survived to become a fan-favorite character. Although he didn’t receive a lot of screen time in the 2015 film, he makes up for that in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Unfortunately for Poe, however, he appears to have gotten a little big for his britches.
Poe goes from being the loyal soldier in The Force Awakens to the leader of a small rebellion inside the Resistance in The Last Jedi. What would cause the hotshot pilot to go against the orders of his commanding officers? Keep reading to find out.
Commander to Captain
The sequel begins with the Resistance fleeing from its D’Qar base following its discovery by the First Order. While they journey off the planet in escape pods, Poe covers for his teammates by taking the fight to the First Order fleet. The Resistance isn’t slinking quietly into the night, thought: A battalion of bombers is sent directly at the First Order.
However, with its numbers dwindling, the Resistance doesn’t have enough ships to cover for the bombers, and the First Order begins to pick them off. General Leia Organa calls for a retreat, but Poe isn’t in the mood to run and hide. He believes they can’t pass up a chance to take out a First Order dreadnought, and need to complete their mission. Unfortunately, Poe should have listened to Leia, as all of the bombers are destroyed before making contact with the dreadnought, save for one pilot (Rose Tico’s sister), who sacrifices herself to drop her payload.
Once back on the Resistance cruiser, Poe is greeted with a slap across the face from Leia, and an immediate demotion from commander to captain. As much as Leia likes Poe, she can’t have her subordinates going rogue and disobeying orders, especially when lives are at stake.
Enter Vice Admiral Holdo
Poe’s demotion doesn’t put an end to his conflicts with superiors, however. Not long after his clash with Leia, the general gravely injured when her command deck is blown open and she’s sucked into space. That leads to one of the more impressive scenes in The Last Jedi, as Leia uses the Force to pull herself back aboard the Raddus. With Leia out of commission, command of the Resistance is passed to Laura Dern’s Vice Admiral Holdo.
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