Those that are keeping track of the ever emerging new Star Wars canon may have taken note of one of the more recent episodes of the Disney XD series Star Wars: Rebels, in which our padawan hero Ezra constructs his own rather individualistic lightsaber. More than 30 years ago another young padawan, though he was never called that, built a saber of his own. But like so many other great moments in film history, Luke Skywalker’s light saber construction ended up on the cutting room floor. Thanks to the internet, where anything is possible, we proudly present that all too brief missing scene from Return of the Jedi.
The lightsaber has been a staple of the Star Wars fandom since the very beginning, but there are plenty of things that casual fans of the series may not know.
The lightsaber, in Obi Wan Kenobi’s words “a civilized weapon,” was originally a weapon of the dark side. Channeling dark energy with black crystals and alchemy, the first “forcesabers” would have turned the most noble Jedi to the dark side with a single use. The Jedi developed the lightsaber, a similarly constructed weapon that would channel the lighter side of the force, to combat their dark counterparts.
By the time Luke, and eventually Ezra, get around to constructing their own sabers the Emperor and Sith Lord Palpatine has made even owning a saber a punishable crime, even going so far as to outlaw the trade of the crystals used in their construction. The crystal used by Luke is a synth-crystal, likely created in a lab of some sorts, while Ezra has the benefit of a living master to lead him to the traditional path of the Jedi. Fans will appreciate a special guest appearance if you haven’t already seen (Seriously, you need to be watching this show) Episode 8 : “Path of the Jedi”. This Rebels episode may not focus entirely on saber construction, but is a moving tribute to the journey every Jedi must take.
While Luke opts for the simple, straightforward saber construction inspired by that of his first master Obi Wan (which, according to Wookiepedia, is actually based on schematics Luke finds in an old journal of Kenobi’s), the film series, The Clone Wars series, and the newer Rebels series, demonstrate that saber design can be as unique as the Jedi or Sith who wields it.
Darth Mal and Ventress from the prequels and Clone Wars series both wield sabers of unique construction, and while the latest peek at what Episode VII may bring has garnered buzz, the split second peek at what looks like a new Sith lord’s saber has become the butt of an internet joke.
Doesn’t it make sense though, that those that wield the power of the force construct a weapon that suits their own style?
Sith, it seems, are partial to the dual wield/staff saber that allows for more versatility in fighting style. Ventress, Darth Maul, and now The Inquisitor all wield staff like sabers in the traditional villainous red, while most Jedi favor the classic style. Ezra, who is very new to the Jedi scene, incorporates a blaster into his saber design, as smugglers are well known for their appreciation of a good old blaster on their hip.
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Images: Disney, Lucasfilm, Weknowmemes, Jerry Vanderstelt