Thousands of years before Luke Skywalker went into exile on Ahch-To, a powerful rogue Jedi called Revan led a war against Mandalore and fell to the Dark side. Incredibly, The Last Jedi might have made this former “Legend” part of canonized Star Wars history.
Revan, who has as many names as Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones, was born more than 4,000 years before the events of the new Star Wars trilogy. He was a revered and powerful Jedi Knight who defied the neutral wishes of the Jedi Council and chose to help the Galactic Republic in the Mandalorian Wars. He, along with many Jedi followers, won the war. But later, with his companion Alek, Revan fell to the Dark side and became a Sith Lord. The events in the widely praised Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Star Wars: The Old Republic video games both take place after this. The character’s story is a colorful one befitting of the twist-heavy Star Wars legacy.
Since The Force Awakens kicked off a new standard for what is canon and what is mere “Legend” within Star Wars, Revan was sort of stripped of his former glory as one of the most powerful Force-users to ever exist. But one line of description in Star Wars: The Last Jedi: The Visual Dictionary might’ve just changed all that for good.
The Last Jedi: The Visual Dictionary is the definitive guide, “revealing the characters, creatures, droids, locations, and technology from the new film,” and as such, it includes more than 100 images from the film. When the camera wanders around Luke’s hut on Ahch-To, we see what we assume is a fragment of a red kyber crystal in a metal holder. In The Visual Dictionary, these items are described as a “fragmented Sith lightsaber crystal” and a “recovered Jedi Crusader pendant.”
The key term here is “Jedi Crusader,” which mines some very deep Star Wars lore that exclusively references Revan.
They could’ve gone with Jedi Consular, Guardian, Seeker, or Sentinel — each of which represented a more refined subsection of Jedi teachings during the Old Republic. But instead, somebody made the deliberate choice to reference the “Jedi Crusaders,” aka the “Revanchists.” These were the two names given to the group of Jedi who defied the council to follow Revan during the Mandalorian Wars because they literally went on their own crusade against the Mandalorian Neo-Crusaders.
Admittedly, saying that The Last Jedi fully canonizes Revan’s existence is a bit of a stretch, but considering the Revanchists represent the only previous known use of the term “Jedi Crusader,” this one seems pretty likely. Especially because it was the Mandalorians who coined Revan the Jedi Crusader.
After Revan turned to the Dark side, he took up a new red lightsaber that was destroyed when his companion, Darth Malak, betrayed Revan and nearly killed him by firing on his ship. That lightsaber was destroyed in the attack and, seemingly, Revan’s Jedi lightsaber — a different weapon entirely — went from blue to green and eventually settled on violet to represent his straddling the line between the Light and Dark.
So what if Luke somehow found the remains of Darth Revan’s red lightsaber?
There’s also the interesting note that Revan’s costume looks almost identical to Kylo Ren’s.
All of these things could be mere nods to the non-canonical wider history of the Old Republic, or it could be a hint that the greater brand is ready to reintroduce some of its best non-movie Star Wars stories ever.
One thing’s all but certain: Rian Johnson’s all-new movie trilogy won’t be set in the Old Republic time period — or so he says.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is now in theaters.