After two years away from our friends Rey, Poe, and Finn, we’re about to be reunited with them in this month’s Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
The only problem? Well, the fact that it’s been two years. Maybe your memories of their last adventures are a little rusty. That’s why we’re here to help. Ahead of The Rise of Skywalker, here’s where all our main characters left off in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The Last Jedi was a rough ride for the good guys. The First Order’s attacks killed most of the Resistance forces, including Vice Admiral Holdo and Admiral Ackbar, leaving only a handful of survivors to escape from Crait on the Millennium Falcon.
Among them is Rey, who wonders, “How do we build a rebellion from this?” Leia reassures her: “We have everything we need.”
Presumably, we’ll find out in The Rise of Skywalker whether that turns out to be true. But there is reason to believe, at the end of Last Jedi, that Poe was right when he declared, “We are the spark that’ll light the fire that’ll burn the First Order down.”
The story ends with the young Canto Bight stablehands recounting the legend of Luke Skywalker, after which one of them steps out to sweep the floors. He’s got Force abilities, a Rebellion insignia ring on his fingers, and a determined look in his eye as he gazes up at the skies. Who knows how many more like him are out there, growing up into the next generation of Resistance fighters?
The First Order
Things are looking up for the First Order at the end of The Last Jedi, relatively speaking. They emerged victorious from the Battle of Crait, having all but wiped out the Resistance under the command of Kylo Ren — who’s anointed himself the new Supreme Leader, after killing Snoke.
Sure, there looks to be some infighting; General Hux, for one, seems pretty irritated with this change in leadership. But there’s nothing a military this big and powerful and ruthless can’t conquer. Right?
Rey ended The Last Jedi on a definitive choice: She severed the intense Force connection she’d shared with Kylo Ren for much of the movie and flew away from Crait on the Millennium Falcon.
Elsewhere in the movie, she learned to wield the Force from Luke Skywalker himself, apparently made peace with the realization that her parents were nobodies, and finally, at long last, met Poe Dameron. We’re betting Rise of Skywalker will have more to reveal about her past, her connection to the Force, and maybe her relationship with Kylo Ren.
Kylo Ren came out on top in The Last Jedi, having made himself Supreme Leader of the First Order. But he lost one of the only true friends he had when Rey broke off their connection. His own mother, Leia, seems to have given up on saving his soul. And not everyone who works under him seems content to stay under him (yes, Hux, we saw you considering killing him). Rough skies ahead, looks like.
At Crait, Finn attempted to sacrifice himself in order to take out a First Order cannon, only to be thwarted when his new pal Rose purposely crashed into him. He thus lived to escape with the rest of the Resistance on the Millennium Falcon — and may be destined for a romance with Rose, after sharing a kiss with her on the battlefield.
Unfortunately, Rose’s rescue of Finn just about wiped her out. She had barely a chance to tell him that, “That’s how we’re going to win: not fighting what we hate, saving what we love,” and give him a kiss on the lips before passing out. The last time we see her in The Last Jedi, Finn is looking down at her still-unconscious body on the Millennium Falcon.
Despite his attempted mutiny against Vice Admiral Holdo, Poe Dameron remains in good standing with the Resistance as of the end of Last Jedi. He, too, is aboard the Millennium Falcon at the end, where he finally gets to shake hands with Rey.
The one thing we know not to expect from him in Rise of Skywalker is a romantic relationship with Finn — director J.J. Abrams has shut down that rumor already on the press tour, much to the disappointment of Stormpilot shippers.
General Leia Organa
In The Force Awakens, Leia lost her longtime love, Han Solo. In The Last Jedi, she said goodbye to her brother, Luke Skywalker; mourned the loss of her friend, Amilyn Holdo; and gave up on her son, Ben Solo a.k.a. Kylo Ren. Still, she has hope the Resistance will rise again — she says as much to Rey as they’re leaving Crait together on the Millennium Falcon.
BB-8, R2-D2, C-3PO, Chewbacca, and the porgs
All are present and accounted for on the Millennium Falcon in the final scenes of The Last Jedi, and will surely continue to provide comic relief and/or emotional shading and/or pure adorableness in The Rise of Skywalker.