Well, the new teaser trailer for Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens was just released. Although at a minute and a half, it seems to me to count as a regular trailer. But they’re calling it a teaser, so that’s that. It will be in theaters this Christmas but until then, let’s look at each shot in the teaser to see what we can learn about this mysterious new Star Wars sequel.
The first shot takes its time. A speeder crosses the desert from left to right and slowly we realize it isn’t a sand dune or mountain in the background: it’s a long-crashed Imperial Star Destroyer. Now, Return of the Jedi ended the Emperor and Darth Vader but there were probably still lots of Imperial Naval forces for the good guys to mop up over the last 30 years. Maybe the Star Wars never really stopped. Over these first several shots which remind us of the original Star Wars trilogy with Luke, Leia and Han, we hear the somber John Williams score. He did this score, but it may be his last contribution.
Never expected to see Darth Vader in any form but we get a lingering shot on his melted helmet. Who kept this? Luke? Seems like not the way he’d want to remember his father. But who else would have wanted it? Maybe there’s a massive subplot about the Ewoks cleaning up. When you see this helmet, do you hear the jingle “Three more days till Halloween, Halloween, Halloween”? If not, you are lucky to have missed Halloween 3: Season of the Witch. Because this melted mask looks a lot like their Jack O Lantern mask.
We see a fire so this is either a campsite or a lava planet. I lean towards campsite. It’s R2-D2! And while we see the last two shots and the next one, we hear a voiceover by Luke Skywalker. It’s obviously similar to the one he said to Leia in Return of the Jedi but there’s a little more at the end that’s new. He says: “The Force is strong in my family. My father has it. I have it. My sister has it. You have that power too!” But who is touching R2? It seems too small to be Luke but at the same time there’s a robotic hand and hood, like Luke would wear. So maybe it is him.
Who is handing over this lightsabre and who is receiving it? There’s no real clues but they seem to be women’s hands. Perhaps one is that of Rey, the new character played by Daisy Ridley? Too soon to know.
Finally the somber music hits its crescendo and we get tons of action shots really fast, set to a building orchestra that sounds like a new composition. The first thing we see are some X-Wings flying in formation but in the atmosphere, right above a lake or river.
Then we see pilot Poe Dameron, played by Oscar Isaac. He lets out a cheerful whoop like Han Solo used to do.
This shot is blink and you’ll miss it. All you can really notice at first is the red lightsabre blade. I paused it and you can catch the barest glimpse of a mask under the hood. Not like Darth Vader, but more like a visor and faceplate? If you look at the swinging sabre you can see that it is the one with the crossguard that we first saw in the first teaser.
Here’s our first clear glimpse of Daisy Ridley as Rey and John Boyega as Finn. They are running away from some pretty big explosions with droid BB-8 (the soccer ball droid) racing behind them. Rey looks determined but Finn gets surprised and looks flustered. It’s a little funny.
Here’s a slightly more clear shot of that Sith lord. At least, I’m assuming it’s a Sith lord because not only does he have a lightsabre (and Stormtroopers backing him up) but he throws his hand up as though he’s using the Force. The planet is either a lava planet or it’s at night and there’s fires going on.
Now we get a quick shot on a Hoth-like planet of a new breed of Stormtroopers turning in unison. It’s a big legion and there’s a new military symbol behind them. I’m guessing it’s a new version of the Empire but who knows?
Here’s a closeup of Rey looking up like someone’s interrupted her. She seems to have plates in front of her. Is she eating at home? A waiter somewhere?
A pair of TIE fighters emerge from smoke or clouds. I say new because they are more like a black chrome than grey, black and white like the originals. It is interesting that they’re coming through some sort of clouds because it means they are inside a planetary atmosphere.
We see another shot of that type of TIE fighter kind of clumsily floating through a hangar bay, blasting away at the Stormtroopers. One is even flying through the air. It looks like a lot of it was done with real stunts, not CG.
This is John Boyega’s Finn, who apparently starts off as a Stormtrooper. But in this quick shot he takes off his helmet and looks devastated and horrified. There’s a bloody handprint on his helmet. Just because he’s a Stormtrooper might not mean he’s a bad guy. Remember, Luke Skywalker intended to join the Imperial Academy before the droids and Obi-Wan Kenobi taught him about the Rebel Alliance.
A new type of ship approaches a Star Destroyer, flanked by security ships. The new ship looks like a V. It’s quite sleek.
This Stormtrooper is different than the rest. He or she is wearing a black cape with crimson lining and the armor is like black chrome. Is this one of a kind? It looks like some sort of special trooper.
BB-8 peaks around a corner of a spaceship. The background reminds me of the Millenium Falcon but I can’t be sure it’s that exact ship. Just a beat up one. Not a Star Destroyer or anything like that. Hell, maybe it’s a cantina. BB-8 is definitely the new “cute” robot.
Rey offers Finn a hand. He looks a bit surprised but eventually clasps her arm and gets up. The background looks like junk similar to Tattoine’s Mos Eisley area but is it the same planet or something new?
A pair of TIE fighters chase the Millenium Falcon, like we briefly saw in the first teaser trailer. But the Falcon has a wild plan to ditch them: it flights into a massive derelict spaceship! Classic Star Wars.
It’s reminiscent of Lando flying the Falcon through the second Death Star. In the trailer you can see that the Falcon now has a square radar dish, since Lando knocked the old round one off in the tight Death Star exhaust ports.
And we close on something that’s fun. Han Solo is heard saying: “Chewie. We’re home” and the shot fades up from black to see Chewbacca (looking the same as ever) and a grizzled Han Solo who still flashes his signature cockeyed smile. He seems to have more of a leather jacket than his old vest.
I can’t wait!