A new Star Wars comic that takes place between the original and new trilogies either just created a totally new lightsaber mystery or offered an explanation for where two new lightsabers featured in The Rise of Skywalker come from — it might even tease a major twist coming in The Mandalorian Season 2.
In a new preview for Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #2, which releases on Wednesday, we see Luke Skywalker and Ben Solo on a mission when Ben is a teenager. Written by Charles Soule with art by Will Sliney and colors by Guru-eFX, the preview pages show Luke and Ben on the planet of Elphrona in the Unknown Regions. There, they find an ancient Jedi outpost full of artifacts and other treasures. They also come into conflict with the Knights of Ren, but before they do, Luke says something interesting about finding a lightsaber in a similar place before.
“I found a lightsaber in a place like this once,” Luke says, “but the whole thing was a setup. A trap. Almost killed me.”
Heir to the Jedi is a canonical Star Wars novel that takes place after A New Hope but before Empire Strikes Back. In it, Luke is initially dispatched to secure a weapons supplier for the Rebel Alliance, but he winds up on the planet Rodia. There he meets Taneetch Soonta and they visit the mausoleum of her uncle, the dead Jedi Knight Huulik. They’re attacked by a monstrous ghest, but Soonta gives Luke Huulik’s old lightsaber to defend. He uses it to kill the beast and later dismantles the weapon to study how they’re made, accidentally breaking it in the process.
That explains why Luke doesn’t have this lightsaber going into Empire Strikes Back, but the circumstances don’t exactly match up with whatever Luke is talking about in The Rise of Kylo Ren. A random monster attack is not a trap, and he didn’t “find” Huulik’s lightsaber, it was a gift.
There’s also an event at a Jedi Temple on Vrogas Vas some time later where Luke was captured by the archaeologist Aphra and the assassin droid BT-1, but there wasn’t a new lightsaber involved there. There isn’t a single canonical event that fits his description in the new comic… yet.
A more likely explanation is that Luke is referring to some kind of event we don’t know about yet. Luke spent years after Return of the Jedi searching for Jedi relics, so it seems likely that he may have found this extra lightsaber at some point during that time period.
What could that mean? In our wildest dreams, it could overlap with a rumored Luke Skywalker role in The Mandalorian Season 2. The timing certainly fits.
Keep in mind that Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker introduced us to two new lightsabers that had never been seen previously: Leia’s blue-bladed lightsaber and Rey’s double-sided yellow lightsaber. Rey buries Luke and Leia’s blue lightsabers, so where does she get the kyber crystal and spare parts for her new saber?
This unexplained new lightsaber could be setting up a future explanation for how Leia acquired her lightsaber that was bequeathed to Rey. Alternatively, Rey could have somehow acquired this other lightsaber and fused some of the parts with her staff to make the custom yellow lightsaber we see at the end of Episode IX. In either case, the timing is right for this event to happen sometime around 9 or 10 years after the Battle of Yavin — exactly when The Mandalorian takes place.
What happened to this lightsaber? Will The Rise of Kylo Ren explain it somehow, or is it establishing a mystery that might be unraveled in future Star Wars stories?
Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #2 will be released January 8, 2020.