Clone plots are rarely remembered with fondness. Unless you include genetically modified clones like Mewtwo, most genre fans, upon hearing the word "clones," have war flashbacks from when the Jackal made what felt like 20,000 clones of Spider-Man, resulting in The Clone Saga.
But Star Wars has a long history with clones, too. Obviously, the Clone Wars are a huge period in Star Wars history, establishing the role clones played in creating the entire expanded history of the universe. However, a lesser known clone is Luuke Skywalker, the clone of Luke Skywalker and arguably the silliest portion of the otherwise beloved Thrawn Trilogy, a trilogy of novels written by Timothy Zahn in the now non-canon Star Wars Legends timeline. While the Legends timeline is no longer canon, the Disney era has drawn heavily from it on more than one occasion for inspiration in their current film slate.
With it being all but confirmed that Luke Skywalker will play some role in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, is there any possibility of Luuke appearing? And who even is Luuke?
A Handy Clone
Luuke Skywalker's origins are pretty straightforward. Remember the battle in Cloud City? Darth Vader slices off Luke's hand, sending both it and the lightsaber it held hurdling down a ramp? In the Star Wars Legends timeline, both the hand and lightsaber were taken to a warehouse Palpatine had on a planet called Wayland. Nine years after the Battle over Yavin-4, the Jedi clone Joruus C'baoth managed to manipulate key people in Grand Admiral Thrawn's legion of soldiers to create a clone of Luke Skywalker from said hand.
This clone, Luuke, was then trained by C'baoth to be, essentially, an instrument of his will. While Luuke physically looked like Luke, he was essentially just an extension of C'baoth.
Also, apparently, clones have trouble with the letter "U," seeing as how both Joruus and Luuke say their name with two u's, rather than one. Don't ask questions. It's fairly ridiculous.
Why Does This Exist?
There are many thematic reasons why Luuke exists. It exists as someone Luke can fight, confronting the potential externalized darkness inside him that he wrestled with throughout the series. It offers C'baoth something to do as part of his evil plans to turn Luke to the Dark Side.
But the real objective? This gave Zhan a chance to explain what happened to Luke's hand and his old lightsaber.
Well, in the new canon, we know what ended up happening to Luke's old lightsaber. We know it will appear in The Rise of Skywalker despite Rey and Kylo Ren splitting it apart in a force struggle in The Last Jedi.
Now, the films have yet to clarify how Maz Kanata retrieved Luke's lightsaber. Maybe The Rise of Skywalker will address this mystery. Maybe not.
But what does that matter? Will we see Luuke return as a clone?
You're More Likely to See Josh Trank's Boba Fett Film than Luuke Skywalker
It's a bad idea to rule out any idea, especially with a series as unpredictable as Disney's Star Wars. However, you knew the moment you clicked on this article that there was next to no chance Luuke Skywalker will appear.
Clones have played a huge role in Star Wars, yes, but as foot soldiers, not as an evil clone of a core character. The clone troopers work because Jango Fett was a character introduced in the film the clones appeared in. Audiences didn't grow with him for decades. Clones were an integral part of his character from his inception.
But with Luke? It feels forced. It only made some degree of sense in the Thrawn Trilogy because of C'baoth's connection to clones -- being one himself. But clones have not come up once in the entire sequel trilogy. So, to clone an established character this late in the game? It will feel forced.
Very, very forced.
Returning to Life as a Clone is Played Out
Furthermore, the whole idea of cloning being a way to revive deceased characters has been played out already in the Star Wars Legends canon. In the now infamous story Dark Empire, Emperor Palpatine returns to life and, again thanks to the use of cloned bodies, the villain is revived as a youthful, powerful warrior.
This plot is really dumb.
The idea of clone-based immortality is very hard to do effectively. After all, if a character can just come to life whenever, then what's significant about defeating them? It cheapens their physical presence in a story. It makes death feel like a cheap plot device.
Plus, it seems like Luke's death, despite the assurance in the trailer of nothing ever truly being gone, is pretty permanent. He may return as a Force Ghost at most. But he will not return from the dead via clones. That is just incredibly unlikely.
So, to all 14 people dying to see Luuke on the big screen, or Luuke's clone Luuuke Skywalker (he exists in Star Wars Legends canon, kinda), we're sorry.
Directed and co-written by J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker stars Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, Billie Lourd, Keri Russell, Anthony Daniels, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams and Carrie Fisher, with Naomi Ackie and Richard E. Grant. The film arrives on Dec. 20.